INCE BACKING LUDOVIC DEAL
BLACKPOOL ....1 BURNLEY ........0
BLACKPOOL manager Paul Ince believes Ludovic Sylvestre is making a good case for a fresh deal after the playmaker’s piledriver secured a vital three points against Burnley.
The former Barcelona trainee joined the Seasiders in 2010 and has struck twice in his last two games – with his most recent effort worthy of winning any game.
Now 29, the midfielder’s contract runs out in the summer and with relegation still a threat in a ridiculously tight bottom half of the table, Ince is in no mood to start renewing deals.
However few goals this season are likely to prove as valuable as the rocket that won the Lancashire derby and after dedicating the win to Gary MacKenzie, after the defender’s grandfather passed away in mid-week, Ince admitted he was impressed by the mercurial midfielder.
“Loads of players are out of contract,” he said.“We’ve got some very good players here.
“But I’ve said to them from day one, as soon as we get to where we need to in this league, we’ll sit down and talk about the future but Ludovic is certainly not doing himself any harm.
“When he’s playing in that No.10 role, because he’s such a good footballer he’s always attracted to the ball – but if he can just get more central he will be able to get shots off and make it happen.
“Gary MacKenzie was outstanding. He lost his granddad in the week and we said we’d dedicate the win to him.
“We wanted to give him a couple days off too but he wanted to be part of it and considering the situation, he was brilliant.
“I don’t think we’re safe. It’s a crazy league, isn’t it?”
Burnley made their presence felt with a quarter-hour gone when ex-West Ham man Junior Stanislas let a screaming shot rip – beating Matthew Gilks but not the post.
However, the Blackpool goalkeeper’s hand was forced just before half-time with a full-stretched save to deny winger Ross Wallace his fourth goal of the season.
The Seasiders took a little inspiration from Guadeloupe following the restart as Sylvestre buried the ball into the top corner in the 58th minute – making a statue out of Burnley keeper Lee Grant.
And the 29-year-old had the perfect opportunity to double-up ten minutes from time, but somehow nodded wide after Thomas Ince’s deflected effort thudded against the crossbar.
Sean Dyche refused to blame Blackpool’s muchmaligned pitch in a game the former centre-back insisted was more suited for the backline than 28-goal Charlie Austin.
“On that surface it was either probably going to end up as a mistake from someone or a quality finish,” said Dyche.
“They had the better fist of it early on but I actually thought they managed to play on that surface.
“We had pockets of it as the half went on.Their keeper made a brilliant save against Wallace which is the best I’ve seen for some time.
“Second-half the quality softened because of the pitch – which is the worst I’ve ever seen in my career and I’ve played on some bad ones, I can assure you.
“I’m absolutely sure Paul Ince wants to play on a better surface than that but it what it is – there are no excuses, I want to make that clear.
“Charlie certainly doesn’t hear anything about getting that 30-goal milestone from me, he just wants to play, affect games and score.”
HAVE SOME OF THAT: Ludovic Sylvestre scores the only goal of the game
GIVE ME FIVE: Ludovic Sylvestre celebrates scoring with his teammates