Blackpool boss Neil Critchley beats Man City’s Pep Guardiola to manager of the season award

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Neil Critchley has been named the manager of the season ahead of Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola at a prestigious annual award ceremony.

 

Pool’s head coach claimed the accolade at last night’s North West Football Awards, which was held at the Old Trafford Cricket Ground in Manchester.

Critchley, who guided the Seasiders to promotion from League One in his first full season in charge last term, also saw off competition from Pool legend and Bolton Wanderers boss Ian Evatt, who guided the Trotters back to the third tier.

Derek Adams, formerly of Morecambe but now at Bradford City, and Wigan Athletic’s Leam Richardson were also shortlisted for the gong.

Critchley attended the ceremony to collect the award, while owner Simon Sadler was also present along with several other club staff.

Despite captaining Blackpool to promotion last season, Chris Maxwell surprisingly missed out in the League One player of the season category.

The award instead went to Wigan Athletic’s Will Keane, who scored 11 goals last season, following a public vote.

Critchley guided Blackpool to promotion from League One in his first full season in charge

Critchley guided Blackpool to promotion from League One in his first full season in charge

Maxwell kept 23 clean sheets last term, the most of any goalkeeper in the third tier, and conceded the fewest goals.

Jerry Yates, who scored 23 goals in all competitions to help fire Pool back to the Championship, missed out in the ‘rising star’ category. The award instead went to Liverpool’s Harvey Elliot, who spent last season on loan with Blackburn Rovers.

There was further success for the Seasiders in the ‘community club of the season’ category, which covered the Championship, League One and League Two.

The award recognises the fantastic work the Trust is doing within the community, delivering more than 20 different projects to people across Blackpool.

In the past season the Trust, working under the umbrella of Altogether Now – a legacy for Blackpool, has worked with more than 17,500 different people across the town on projects focused around education, health and inclusion.

The Trust delivered more than 8,000 sessions throughout the year with these sessions being visited more than 181,000 times.

The community trusts from Blackburn Rovers, Bolton Wanderers, Preston North End, Tranmere Rovers and Wigan Athletic were also shortlisted.