Holloway keeps feet firmly on ground

LONDON - Blackpool manager Ian Holloway was keeping his feet firmly on the ground after watching his team launch their first top flight season for nearly 40 years in stunning fashion with a 4-0 win at Wigan Athletic on Saturday.

Even for a Victorian seaside town famous for its rollercoaster rides, few fans of the club could have dreamed of such an adrenaline rush on the opening day of the Premier League season which most observers believe will end in instant relegation for the Tangerines.

But frantic last-ditch trading secured five players this week and one of them, former West Ham United and Aston Villa frontman Marlon Harewood, scored twice in a victory that could have been even more emphatic.

"I didn't dream it would end like that," Holloway, who took the club into the top flight via a playoff victory over Cardiff City, told the BBC. "I had the opposite dream actually.

"Some of these boys only shipped up this week and I had to introduce everybody to each other. People were worried about us and what we had spent, but I don't think it's about what you spend. The boys have got fantastic spirit and we're going to need that by the end of the season.

"Things went our way today and that's absolutely terrific but we have to keep our feet on the ground because we have a long, long way to go to get enought points to stay up."

Harewood was joined at Blackpool this week by Manchester United defender Craig Cathcart and former France under-21 winger Elliot Grandin and all three made their debuts at Wigan.

"We had a disastrous summer to be honest, finding out where we are compared to everyody else," Holloway said. "Where we were last year and what we pay compared to everybody else wasn't going to give us a realistic chance if you look at it on paper."

Blackpool are away again next week, at Arsenal, when things could get a little tougher for Holloway and his players.

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