I feel awful that I so drastically underestimated Blackpool when I relegated them at the start of the season. The tangerines have not only been one of the most suprising teams, they have also been the most exciting. Ian Holloway has put together an amazing team with spirit to burn. They also shockingly play lovely, attacking football.
There have been a number of complaints that the Barclay's Premier League is not a quality league, but I think it is. With teams like Blackpool, West Brom, Spurs, and Chelsea, we are getting to witness the game as it should be played. The beautiful game exists somewhere other than Barcelona. I think the sad part is that teams like Manchester City can be at the top of the table when they can be seen playing such ugly and negative football. The same can be said of Manchester United as well. Since they haven't played particularly well as most would expect, they seem to play a bit negatively. I personally hope that one of the positive teams will win the league this year, and I hate to admit it, but I'd prefer Arsenal to Man City or Man United if those were my only choices.
I think another really positive sign that football is going in the right direction is that teams like Bolton, Wigan and Newcastle who are usually considered physical team, are all playing football to differing levels of success. But to see these teams trying to play the beautiful game as it was intended is a bright point. And it is good to see that there is only one player in those three teams that I really believe is a thug and a bit negative. Tiote for Newcastle is a walking red card and I was discussing him with someone and argued that I think he is a blight on what is a very positive side in Newcastle. Maybe I'm being a bit harsh, but even Joey Barton is doing well, when he's not punching his fellow professionals.
But back to the team that brought me to post today, Blackpool. With the transfer window open, it is a breath of fresh air to hear Holloway making sure that his squad stays together when he said that it was ridiculous to see the teams below Blackpool trying to buy his players. He's right. Why should Charlie Adam go to a team that might actually go down when his team is fighting for a top ten finish. It would be nice to see more players and managers have enough spirit to stick with their team and not simply chase money. Pride and glory will always be worth that bit more.
Go on you Tangerines! Just please be nice to my Spurs.... :)