'Dead duck' heading back to Wembley
Ian Holloway insists Blackpool have come back from being "a dead duck" last summer after guiding the club to the npower Championship play-off final at Wembley.
The Seasiders are just 90 minutes from making an immediate return to the Barclays Premier League as they prepare to meet West Ham at Wembley on May 19 in the most lucrative match in world football. Leading 1-0 from the first leg of their semi-final against Birmingham, Wednesday night's absorbing 2-2 draw at St Andrew's saw the Seasiders progress. The club's relegation from the top flight on the final day of last season, after just one year among England's elite, resulted in the departures of prized asset Charlie Adam as well as the likes of David Vaughan and DJ Campbell. It makes the Seasiders' progression to the showpiece final arguably even more remarkable than two years ago, when they went on beat Cardiff. Holloway left comparisons down to other people but said: "If you asked me last summer when I lost all those players, I would have said this was a dead duck but it certainly isn't. This club doesn't lie down, we keep going. We try and do it in a decent way. "I'm very proud, I'm proud my lads came here and tried to pass the ball, you almost saw what we were like. But with the opposition, as any boxing fight will tell you, you could get knocked out at any second if you've got a weak chin. It looked like we might have one but we haven't."