Gary Bowyer: Blackpool's low turnout for Wembley win 'a shame', says manager

Gary Bowyer
Gary Bowyer guided Blackpool back to League One at the first attempt following relegation last season

Manager Gary Bowyer says it was "a shame" that fewer than 6,000 Blackpool fans saw them win promotion to League One by beating Exeter City at Wembley.

The Blackpool Supporters' Trust continued their boycott of games in protest at the club's owners.

"I was used to that situation at Blackburn, where fans were not happy with their owners," said Bowyer, 45.

"I don't waste time on things I can't control. It's difficult but that's the line you have to adopt."

He told BBC Sport: "It is a shame because it would have been great to have more here, but the ones that were here made a hell of a noise like they have done all season."

Protests about how owner Owen Oyston and his son, chairman Karl, are running the club took place outside Bloomfield Road before their final home game of the season against Leyton Orient, as well as a joint protest in January with Blackburn supporters before their FA Cup tie.

The Lancashire club, which has now gone up via the play-offs on a record five occasions, reportedly took more than 30,000 fans to Wembley in each of their previous two visits when they appeared in Championship play-off finals in 2010 and 2012.

Blackpool goalkeeper Sam Slocombe paid tribute to the supporters who attended, but also looked to defend the club's hierarchy.

"A little bit of credit has to be given to the chairman for backing Gary this year," said Slocombe.

"I think that must be said, because he has helped him and he's allowed us to create the dressing room we have."

Striker Mark Cullen, who scored Blackpool's winning goal in their 2-1 success, added: "5,000 - that's the most we've had all season so we can't really complain too much, and I'm sure that everyone back in Blackpool watching the game really enjoyed it and will be happy for us to get promoted."

Blackpool fans protests
The Blackpool Supporters' Trust have not attended home matches this season and boycotted the club's play-off final at Wembley

Top Stories