Blackpool manager Ian Holloway was left wishing for “a story that would probably beat Cinderella” after his team were faced with a final day survival battle against champions Manchester United.
The Seasiders kept their hopes of avoiding relegation alive with a 4-3 win at home to Bolton Wanderers on Saturday, with Charlie Adam sealing victory shortly after the hour mark.
However, Wolverhampton Wanderers’ 3-1 win at Sunderland left Blackpool in the bottom three and the Tangerines may require a victory at Old Trafford next weekend if they are to avoid an immediate return to the Championship.
Holloway, whose side are currently in the relegation zone on goal difference alone, a point shy of safety, refused to let the disappointment of Wolves’ win cast a shadow over Blackpool’s thrilling victory at Bloomfield Road.
“That’s four games unbeaten and anyone who’s seen the last four games can tell that Blackpool are back and looking like we did at the start of the season,” he said. “That was really important to us. This story has been unfolding for the last two years. We’ve got to go to Manchester United and probably get a win, and that might not even be enough.”
“I believe it will be, though, because Wolves are at home to Blackburn. I’ve had some strange things happen in my life and maybe the main man up there has written a story that would probably beat Cinderella, and I believe we can do it, whoever they put out. I want to spoil their party,” Holloway said.
Wolves were left 16th in the table after a fine win away to Sunderland, just a point clear of the bottom three.
Former Sunderland defender Jody Craddock gave Wolves a 22nd-minute lead on his return to the Stadium of Light, before a failure to clear a corner allowed Stephane Sessegnon to smash home a 34th-minute equalizer at the far post, but Matt Jarvis, a halftime substitute, provided the cross from the right that allowed Steven Fletcher to head Wolves in at the far post.
George Elokobi sealed Wolves’ victory with a header 12 minutes from time.
However, former Black Cats boss McCarthy, whose Wolves side also beat West Bromwich Albion 3-1 last weekend, said: “It’s the same three points as last week. I said it would go to May 22 and it’s going there, isn’t it?”
“Nobody can do anything about it. Everybody has been in your earhole — the media, mums, dads, kids, friends. ‘If this happens. If that happens,’” he said. “Just win our game. If we win our game, then nobody can do anything about it and the same applies on Sunday against Blackburn.”
Saturday’s other match saw West Brom beat Everton 1-0, Youssouf Mulumbu scoring the only goal of the game in the 10th minute, before the Toffees’ Russian substitute, Diniyar Bilyaletdinov, was sent off.