Match Report: Paul Ince pleased with return to the family business
Blackpool 0 Leicester City 0
To borrow the title from Colin Shindler's book on three generations of the Summberbee family, this was an afternoon about fathers, sons and football.
When the Leicester goalkeeper, Kasper Schmeichel, batted down a lovely chip from Tom Ince, there must have been a range of emotions running through Paul Ince's mind. Here was his son being denied a goal by a boy he had watched growing up.
Peter Schmeichel works as an ambassador for Manchester United while Paul Ince has a position that carries with it the job security of a politician in a former Soviet republic. This was his first home game as Blackpool's fourth manager of a grinding, frustrating season.
Ince had been a frequent visitor to the directors' box at Bloomfield Road when watching Tom, who before the game was presented with the player-of-the month award for January.
He had managed him at Notts County, where Paul admitted some players had made comments about nepotism. Despite the choruses of "daddy's boy" from the Leicester fans, Tom Ince would merit a place in some Premier League sides, let alone this one.
"Of course your emotions are different," said his father. "When I was in the directors' box I was watching as a dad. My son was playing and all I wanted was for him to do well and Blackpool to win. As a manager it is different and tougher, but I am not complaining. It is nice to be back after 16 months out of the game."
Blackpool are a different side to the one they were under Ian Holloway, where the style of football was swashbuckling enough for the piratical shores of the Caribbean. Now they are more attuned to the Irish Sea in February. Solidity, not what Ince called "five-a-side games on an 11-a-side pitch", is what the new manager will offer Blackpool first. With just two wins in their last 12 League games, they certainly need it.
It was an awful game, played on an even worse surface, but for Paul Ince it was a first foothold back into football. However much glamour is attached to his name, Ince had lost his last six matches as a manager – five on the trot before his sacking from Notts County and his first for Blackpool at Leeds on Wednesday night.
Had Leicester not squandered a penalty when the usually reliable Chris Wood drove his spot-kick against the bar in the second half, he might have lost this too.
"Results can be deceiving," he said. "I thought we should have won at Leeds and I am pleased to get something from a very good Leicester side who have spent a fortune this year."
There is not much money at Blackpool, but there is plenty of sand. Quite a lot of the Pleasure Beach appeared to have been dumped on to the pitch, which the ground staff, with supreme futility, tried to dress with forks. They would have needed a fleet of steamrollers.
After the game, when Nigel Pearson walked into Bloomfield Road's modest press room, the Leicester manager thought it appropriate there was a beach ball on the carpet.
Blackpool (4-4-1-1): Gilkes; Baptiste, Broadfoot, Cathcart, Crainey; Eardley, Basham, Ferguson, Taylor-Fletcher (Delfouneso, 72); Phillips (Derbyshire, 81); Ince.
Leicester (4-4-2): Schmeichel; De Laet, Morgan, Keane, Konchesky; King, Drinkwater, Wood, Marshall (Knockaert, 74); Kane (Vardy, 80), Nugent (Dyer, 61).
Referee Simon Hooper.
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