Ian Poveda joined Blackpool on a season-long loan from Leeds United in the summer but it took until Saturday in a draw against Cardiff for the winger to make an impact – something which has frustrated his boss Michael Appleton.

Poveda, 22, moved to Blackpool with the winger not in Jesse Marsch’s plans. It comes after he broke his leg while impressing at Blackburn last season – which ended his loan at Ewood Park early. Now, he is on the comeback trail.

Previously making nine appearances in the Championship for Blackpool this season, Poveda was yet to provide a goal or an assist. He had only started three of those nine matches. It looked as if it was only going one away before January.

But on Saturday, Poveda was called upon at half-time with Cardiff leading 1-0. He “made the difference” according to Lancs Live, who gave him a 7.5/10 for his display – Blackpool’s best. It was his cross that Gary Madine headed in.

Cardiff City v Blackpool - Sky Bet Championship
Photo by Ian Cook – CameraSport via Getty Images

Appleton gave his verdict to the Blackpool Gazette – saying he had expected Poveda to show the kind of form he is capable of a bit earlier on in Blackpool’s season. They currently sit in 22nd position in the Championship table.

“He was great,” Appleton told the Gazette. “He can play off both sides, he can play as a 10, potentially as an eight. He’s coming into it a little bit, a bit late for my liking but at least he’s showing now what he’s capable of,” Appleton said.

Leeds winger Poveda has frustrated Blackpool boss Appleton

Hopefully now, this is a kickstart for Poveda. When he joined Leeds, there were high hopes. Considered the next Raheem Sterling, earning praise from Pep Guardiola – well-liked by Marcelo Bielsa. But it has not worked for Poveda.

Even before his leg break, he had not done enough to convince Marsch that he should be a first-team player. Then, the injury occurred and it has pushed Poveda a few steps back. He even lost his no.7 shirt at Leeds to Brenden Aaronson.

He needs a really good loan spell at Blackpool to show Leeds that he can still do it. He has a contract at Elland Road until 2024. So, his assist and second-half display on Saturday could just be the start of Poveda turning it around.

Cardiff City v Blackpool - Sky Bet Championship
Photo by Ian Cook – CameraSport via Getty Images
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