There were plenty of eyebrows raised when Leeds United let Paudie O’Connor join Blackpool on loan in the summer.
The 21-year-old made a positive impression during a 2017/18 breakthrough season at Elland Road, making four appearances in the Championship. And, with only two senior centre-backs on Leeds’ books - Pontus Jansson and Liam Cooper - it was expected that O’Connor would be handed a bigger role under Marcelo Bielsa.
Instead, he was farmed out to League One. And, after an impressive start to life at Blackpool, starring in the goalless draw against AFC Wimbledon on the first day of the season, O’Connor’s game time has suddenly dried up.
He started four of Blackpool’s first five league games but has not featured in the club’s last three matches. O’Connor was benched for the clash with Walsall on September 1 and has been left out of the squad by manager Terry McPhillips in the last two games.
Curtis Tilt and Donovan Daniels have started together against Bradford and Plymouth. But O’Connor could be given a chance to re-establish himself next time out given that Daniels was sent off for scuffling with his own teammate in the defeat to Plymouth.
This is a chance O’Connor must take if he is to avoid a prolonged run out of the team.