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P.J. Murray 18th May 2012 - 13:48

You know when you've been Tangoed

In 2010 Man Utd finished second in the Premier League, Bayern Munich lost the Champions League final and Blackpool were promoted in the Championship play-off, is history set to repeat itself.

Ian Holloway's side have the experience, but West Ham have the calibre, which will win out on what is one of the biggest days in the footballing calendar.

The Hammers have the psychological advantage of having won both league encounters between the sides, 4-1 at Bloomfield Road before another comprehensive 4-0 win at Upton Park. In fact Blackpool have won just one of their last 10 against the Irons, in six of those defeats they have conceded three or four goals.

Sam Allardyce's side are Even money favourites to win the tie in 90 minutes, and they may be playing for more than mere promotion. The Hammers managed to retain a lot of the squad which saw them relegated, should they fail to go up however, they will find it hard to convince these players to hang on for another season.

Blackpool (13/5) are looking for their second stint in the top flight, for pure footballing reasons I would personally love to see them back in the big time. They haven't tried to buy their way up, but rather, put together a solid squad and stick with them. The 5/4 on them to be promoted seems quite good.

Considering the high scoring nature of games between these two sides we are offering 4/1 on 4 or more goals to be scored as part of another value Match Winner offer. And, rather than being a cagey affair, the last two play-off finals have been open and attacking affairs.

Kevin Philips is not the man you want in your side if you are superstitious, the 38-year-old has lost twice in the final, once with Sunderland and then again with West Brom, co-incidentally both are now established Premier League sides. But he is a goalscorer and at 15/2 to open the scoring he could be breaking all sorts of hoodoos.

Ricardo Vaz Te has been the man who has singlehandedly saved West Ham's season as he propelled them into third in the league with a glut of goals since signing. He is 6/1 to score first and 7/4 to hit the net anytime.

West Ham minus a goal at 11/4 or Blackpool minus a goal at 13/2 seem to be great bets, depending on your persuasion of course. I fancy one side to totally dominate and it's just all down to who settles into the occasion a bit more. Both teams to score at 7/10 is quite short, but if you were to double it with Chelsea to win the Champions League later that day it's a nice double.

For me, Blackpool have the experience and Holloway will have them primed for another tilt at the Premier League and I think everyone real football fan will want the Tangerine army back in the Premier League.


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