Insider: Portsmouth target Curtis Tilt is Blackpool's best player who makes defending look easy

Blackpool Gazette reporter Matt Scrafton gives us the lowdown on Pompey target Curtis Tilt.

Monday, 24th June 2019, 6:00 pm
Curtis Tilt Picture: Pete Norton/Getty Images

Curtis Tilt is probably regarded as the best player at Blackpool.

Last season he wasn’t quite as good as he was the season before. That’s not to say he wasn’t good, though, because he definitely was. He was definitely up there with the best performers still.

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If you’re an outsider thinking about Blackpool’s squad, I guess you’d look at Curtis Tilt and Jay Spearing. They’re the two who spring to mind as the standout players.

We ran a player-of-the-year vote at the Blackpool Gazette at the end of the season and Tilt finished third or fourth. But when I counted up my average player ratings for the season he was first.

That was a little surprising to me because, although he didn’t have a poor season by an stretch, he maybe didn’t quite hit the levels of his first season here.

Curtis is a very, very good defender, though, and when you watch him in League One it’s hard to believe he’d spent his career before coming here in non-league football. It’s a surprise he wasn’t spotted by teams in the west midlands area beforehand.

LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 16: Curtis Tilt of Blackpool reacts during the Sky Bet League One match between Charlton Athletic and Blackpool at The Valley on February 16, 2019 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Jack Thomas/Getty Images)

He was actually spotted by Gary Bowyer’s dad, Ian, at Wrexham. He’d obviously worked under Brian Clough at Nottingham Forest and Gary said if someone with his background rated a player that was good enough for him.

Curtis is a very confident centre-back who brings the ball out.

It may be hypercritical but perhaps a slight criticism is he got over-confident doing that at times. If you get caught out it can lead to high-profile gaffes, but he is a very silky defender.

It comes to Curtis very easily and it’s almost felt he’s playing up to the scouts at times! But he looks good doing it and if you can then why not?

He’s capable of creating space coming forward but can do all the basics of defending as well.

Blackpool did a video of Curtis last season and it was mostly him bringing the ball out and beating players. It looks impressive. If it goes wrong it can look silly, but I don’t think he’s the type of player to stop it.

He is a goal threat, too, and he scored an overhead-kick last season in the 94th minute against Plymouth. How many defenders do you see do that? That sums up Curtis really.

The interest from Ipswich last year became dragged out. It became silly but probably summed up (former owner) Owen Oyston.

The contracts and signings were previously dealt with by the manager and the chief exec, but he got involved and everyone became fed up by the end of it.

There was no gossip, bids or anything to report in January, however. Now we’ll see what happens.