The Midfielder's Thoughts Ahead Of Blackburn's Visit...
Games with local rivals often require plenty of heart and battle, step forward Neal Bishop, who is hoping to steer Blackpool to victory when Blackburn Rovers visit on Saturday.
Arguably the unsung here in this Blackpool side, Bishop has been impressive since his summer move, and last week helped put Paul Ince’s side fifth, ahead of the Blackburn visit.
It is the third time a fellow Lancashire club has come to Bloomfield Road this month, and having played in previous clashes with Bolton and Wigan, Bishop knows what to expect.
“It’s another derby, obviously following on from a great result against Wigan last Saturday. It is another opportunity to get three points against our rivals,” said Bishop.
“I don’t think we could have asked for much more. You always want to improve, we’ve had results where we’ve drawn and could have picked up three points, but maybe we’re asking too much. We’re where we deserve to be.
“We’re looking to push on, it’s been a good start, but we know it’s a long season – there is much more we want to achieve.”
Last Saturday Bishop played on the left side of midfield, rather than his familiar central role, and is likely to keep that slot for the visit of Rovers
“I wouldn’t describe the position I’ve been playing as left wing, more left midfield. I’m not going to get the ball down, drop my shoulder, and try to get the full back for pace. I’m out there to do a job and I think it’s been working really well.
“Competition for places is fierce, if you do well you’re more than likely to keep your place, which is what me and others have done. That is credit to the squad, people are willing to play anywhere to get a chance in the team.
“The Gaffer has asked not only me, but a number of players to play out of position, and everyone has done extremely well.”
Now the 32-year-old is focussed on claiming a fifth home victory that could push The Seasiders up to as high as third – but they’ll need the supporters to be in good voice, as they were last weekend.
“They really get behind us, especially on Saturday in the last ten minutes when we really needed them.
“The atmosphere here is absolutely fantastic, it’s been a pleasure to play here so far, it’s a good start but I won’t get carried away,” Bishop said.