Allardyce: Final is no grudge match

Fri, 18 May 13:04:45 2012

Sam Allardyce insists he has no axe to grind with Blackpool ahead of West Ham's Wembley encounter with his former club.

The Hammers boss is potentially 90 minutes from a return to the Barclays Premier League, 18 months after he was sacked by Blackburn's owners Venky's.

Standing in his way in Saturday's play-off final are the Seasiders, the club where Allardyce cut his managerial teeth before he was also ruthlessly shown the door after narrowly missing out on promotion to Division One in 1996.

But the 57-year-old says he bears no grudges ahead of the £90million promotion shoot-out.

"It's long gone, water under the bridge," he said. "At the time it was devastating because I thought I might have been lost to football, I thought I might not get back into the game.

"Luckily that wasn't the case but the experience I gained as a manager has stood me in good stead to go on and do better things, so I have no axe to grind with Blackpool."


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