Keith Southern says a 5-1 victory over Swansea City was the moment when he knew something special was about to happen in Blackpool’s promotion year of 2010.
The midfielder, who recently sat down for a lengthy interview to reflect on the anniversary of the Seasiders’ elevation to the top-flight, remembers that match being a pivotal one under the lights.
“The game that stands out for me was in the March time, towards the back end of the season when we played Swansea at home,” he admitted.
“It was a night game and I think we were eighth or ninth in the league and Swansea were sixth, I think, at the time. It was one of those six-pointer games and if they’d have won, they’d have galloped away from us with games running out.
“We ended up beating them 5-1 on a mud bath of a pitch I remember and we were outstanding. We really made a statement that night.
“From that day on, I kind of thought that something special is going to happen here.”
The result against Swansea that night was the start of a run that saw Blackpool win nine out of 11 games in the run to promotion, with the final one coming against another Welsh side, Cardiff City, at Wembley.
“It was tough. They were a top Championship side with good players, but we had that character and belief just to get over the line and see the job through,” Southern said of the 3-2 win.
Pool’s midfield general also picked up the Man of the Match award in the final, picking up an individual trophy to go alongside his 2010 play-off medal.
“I thought I did OK, I thought I had a decent game. It probably suited my game in the second-half, with the way it went. We were leading and I could win some tackles, put my foot in and break play up. It probably made me look a better player than I was at the time.
“It’s a memory that I’ll cherish forever. I got a lovely trophy for it and I remember coming out after the game, back onto the pitch and my photo was on the big screen at Wembley with Man of the Match. I was immensely proud.
“But I was proud of everybody. I’d been at the Club a long time – I’d been there for eight years prior to that moment – and on a journey with various managers and hundreds of different players. To get to that point, I was quite emotional, crying and waving to my wife in the top tier of the stand, then seeing my little boy afterwards and meeting friends and family at the after do.
“To spend eight years there and then get to the Premier League was incredible, really.”
You can watch the full 27-minute interview with Keith on the YouTube video below.