Arsenal loanee Daniel Ballard continued his strong recent form with a goal for Blackpool in midweek, as Championship clubs eye him up for next season.
On Tuesday night, Daniel Ballard helped Blackpool to secure a draw against Crewe Alexandra. After his Team of the Week appearance and two consecutive clean sheets, the centre-back scored the opening goal this time around, heading home from a set-piece.
💪 A first goal in tangerine for @dg_ballard!
🍊 #UTMP pic.twitter.com/DSR8RgI5et
— Blackpool FC (@BlackpoolFC) March 3, 2021
The 21-year-old’s strong recent form in League One is reportedly catching the eye in the Championship, with Arsenal Youth reporting that there’s interest from several clubs in a loan move for next season. Arsenal are reportedly pleased with his development too.
What’s more, Ballard is set for another international call-up later this month, after starting Northern Ireland’s last couple of competitive matches.
Speaking after Tuesday night’s game, Ballard said: “I’ve been waiting for my first goal and I probably could have done a lot better in the box up to now. Hopefully, now I’ve got one, I can push on and get a few more.”
Unfortunately, Crewe came back into the game to earn a draw with a late equaliser, which Ballard admitted was frustrating. But he’s clearly glad to be back starting again recently.
“It’s been a bit stop-start for me,” Ballard admitted. “Hopefully, now I can stay fit, injury-free, and put in some good performances to help the team. We’ve got a busy schedule coming up so we’re going to need all the squad.”
Per stats from Blackpool StatZone, Ballard has six clean sheets with Blackpool in 10 starts, winning 81 duels, making 40 recoveries, and an average of two interceptions per game.
The chance to step up to the Championship next season would certainly be welcome for the defender.