EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW – MATT BLINKHORN
Chris Park caught up with striker Matt Blinkhorn ahead of this week’s Play-off matches to get his thoughts on a massive week for AFC Fylde.
Would you say this is the biggest week in the club’s history?
Definitely, the aim at the start of the season was to get promoted one way or another and we’re in with a very good chance of doing that. We can’t look too far ahead though and we’ve got to win on Tuesday before even thinking about Saturday’s Final.
So what have you learned from the experience of last season’s Play-off defeat?
None of the lads who were involved last season want to have that feeling again. I felt sick after that defeat and Chally said to us on the pitch after the game that we need to remember that feeling and use it to spur us on this season. I think that definitely drove the lads on to not be in that situation again this time around on Tuesday night. Also, there are different factors this season as we’re playing at home in both games and we know that we can beat anybody on our day on our own pitch as long as we perform to our full potential.
Do you think the run that the side are on towards the end of the season, just one defeat in 26 matches in all competitions, stand you in good stead?
I’ve always said that you find that winning’s a habit and so is losing. We found that in December when we couldn’t get the results but also, since early January and despite the defeat to Grantham a couple of weeks ago, we’ve not looked back. Its knock-out football from now on and our wins in the Lancashire FA Challenge Trophy and Doodson Sport Cup will give us confidence that we can succeed in that situation.
How do you see Ashton approaching the game?
They’ll certainly be up for it. I think they rested one or two key players over the past couple of games ahead of their Semi Final match. They’ll be full of confidence after beating FC United in the manor they did but as I said earlier that shouldn’t be an issue as we’ll concentrate on our own performance, and on our own pitch we can beat anyone.
I know you don’t look past the next game but what would success this week mean to the club in your opinion?
It would be massive for the club. With the plans off the pitch that they have as well what better way to celebrate what will hopefully be good news on the stadium next month with promotion to the Conference North. It’ll open up so many doors for the club and I can’t wait to get out on the pitch and do my bit in order that we fulfil our dreams.