Blackpool Arsenal on loan for EFL League 1 Player of the Month against Oxford United, Hull City and Burton Albion men

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Neil Critchley is delighted to have Marvin Ekpiteta and Keshi Anderson return from …

The defenseman was in good shape last month, helping the Seasiders keep three sheets clean to put them on the verge of securing a play-off spot.

The loaned Arsenal has made 33 appearances for Neil Critchley’s men this season, scoring twice.

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Ballard helped Blackpool keep three sheets clean last season

“The youngster on loan is a throwback from a defender who enjoys a physical battle,” the EFL said when announcing Ballard’s appointment.

“He kept the prolific Charlie Wyke quiet as Blackpool claimed two vital 1-0 wins over Sunderland with just five goals conceded in seven games for Ballard.

Ballard faces competition for player of the month gong from Oxford United back Sam Long, Hull City forward Josh Magennis and Burton Albion midfielder Joe Powell.

Long, who recently signed a new contract with Oxford, scored three of his team’s 18 goals in April.

Magennis scored six times for title winners Hull, also recording an assist, while Powell scored three goals for the Brewers.

The manager of the month award will be contested between Lincoln City’s Michael Appleton, Hull boss Grant McCann, Wigan Athletic’s Leam Richardson and AFC Wimbledon boss Mark Robinson.

The winners of the two prizes will be announced on Friday morning.

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