Blackpool boss Neil Critchley reveals injury worry ahead of Sunderland clash in Carabao Cup

The Black Cats face the Tangerines at Bloomfield Road on Tuesday evening.

Monday, 23rd August 2021, 1:50 pm

Blackpool are sweating on the fitness of Grant Ward.

That’s after he was stretchered off in the 2-2 draw at AFC Bournemouth in the Championship last weekend.

The midfielder exited the match midway through the second half at the Vitality Stadium.

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Neil Critchley, Manager of Blackpool.

Neil Critchley’s side came from two goals down to earn their second Championship point of the season following promotion via the play-offs last season.

Midfield has been a problem area for the Seasiders, with Kevin Stewart, Demetri Mitchell and Matty Virtue all currently injured or on the road back to fitness.

It means Critchley is hoping for some good news on Ward as Pool prepare for tomorrow’s Carabao Cup tie against Sunderland at Bloomfield Road.

Asked about the 26-year-old, head coach Critchley admitted: “That is a concern. It’s his Achilles, so if that is serious, then that would really take the gloss off what was a fantastic performance.

“Wardy’s been magnificent for us. He epitomises what the team is about – humility, honesty and work ethic.

“He’s been outstanding for us, so if we do get bad news, then that would spoil this day for me.”

Frederik Alves will make his Sunderland debut on Tuesday, it has been confirmed, with the West Ham loanee set to start alongside Bailey Wright as Lee Johnson rotates his Sunderland XI.

There could also be opportunities for new signings, with Everton loanee Nathan Broadhead expected to benefit from more minutes alongside Alves, who has been in the last two matchday squads but is yet to make his debut.

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