Owen Dale’s switch to Blackpool has finally been made into a permanent one.
The winger returned to Crewe Alexandra during the week after his loan spell at Bloomfield Road expired.
Dale initially joined the Seasiders on September 1 with a view to making the move permanent this month.
However, that was thrown into doubt when Crewe boss David Artell released a statement claiming the Railwaymen would “endeavour” to do all they could to get him back “fit and available”.However, contrary to reports, it’s understood a permanent move was always on the cards and it was just a case of finding a resolution between the two clubs.
Dale has agreed a two-year deal with the Seasiders, with an option to extend by 12 months.
Head coach Neil Critchley told The Gazette: “The agreement of the loan was always due to run out in January and then it was about finding an agreement – like with any transfer – between two clubs, which can take a bit of time.
“We found that resolution and both clubs came to an agreement, so he now becomes a permanent Blackpool player.
Dale’s loan spell with the Seasiders has now ended
“I’m absolutely delighted to welcome Owen back to the club on a permanent basis.
“Owen is someone I’ve known for a very long time. I’ve seen him have a very good upbringing and education at Crewe.
“I thought he had a fantastic season last season in a good Crewe team and this has always been our plan to bring him here permanently.
“We’re delighted we’ve been able to find a resolution with Crewe to come to an agreement.”
Dale scored on his Blackpool debut in the comeback win at Reading in October but only managed another six further appearances, last featuring in the defeat at Derby County on December 11.
The winger’s loan got off to a delayed start as an issue with his foot emerged during his medical, meaning he didn’t make his Blackpool bow for another seven weeks after joining.
Despite his stop-start time at Bloomfield Road to date, Critchley is excited about what the future holds for his latest recruit.
Dale becomes Blackpool’s second signing of the January transfer window, following in the footsteps of striker Jake Beesley from Rochdale.The Seasiders are also keen to strengthen in central midfield, where their options have been depleted by injuries and the recall of Ryan Wintle to Cardiff City.