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First Team

Hot Off The Press: Blackburn Rovers

Rich Sharpe of the Lancashire Telegraph previews tonight's game

27 November 2019

With 17 games gone, Blackburn sit 17th in the Championship standings after what could be described as an inconsistent few months. What have you made of what you’ve seen at Ewood Park so far?

For the quality and range of options at their disposal, Rovers have underperformed so far. Their away form of late has been poor, with five consecutive defeats. They have struggled to put two halves together and that has proved costly, as has not turning winning positions in to victories at Ewood. They have won back-to-back matches at home though, and with two more in their next three, will look to use this as something of a springboard to push towards the top half.

Rovers haven’t kept a clean sheet since the 2-0 win at home to Millwall on 14 September and have shipped nine in their last five league games. How much of an issue would you say this is proving to be? 

The goals against column was their downfall last season, letting in 69 in total, 46 of which came away from home. They haven’t addressed that as yet, with no clean sheet in 10, despite picking up four in six games earlier this season. The return to fitness of Darragh Lenihan is a boost, and the hope will be he can strike up a good understanding with Manchester City loanee Tosin Adarabioyo who has had his own fitness concerns.

He’s only been at the club two-and-a-half years, but Bradley Dack (pictured above) is closing in on the 50-goal mark, with eight already this term. Is there a worry that he might not be at the club past the January transfer window?

He remains the go-to man and their main source of goals. Dack turns 26 next month so is entering a critical period of his career. Despite his goals and reputations, Rovers haven’t been fending off bids left, right and centre. That largely comes down to which clubs that would realistically be in for him could be able to afford the asking price that Rovers would demand. He’s crucial to this side in terms of the goals he brings, and Rovers will do everything they can to keep hold of him.

Having finished 15th in their first season back in the Championship last year, what do you think is a realistic target for Rovers?

The manager wanted a sustained challenge at the top six, but Rovers have fallen short so far. Having consolidated last season after promotion, chalking up 60 points, I think heading towards 70 and a top-half finish would be more realistic.

Last season you said that Mowbray had exclusively used a 4-2-3-1 formation for the past two seasons. Is that how they are likely to line up on Wednesday?

They have gone with a back three once, but largely it’s been 4-2-3-1 again. Accommodating Bradley Dack in the role behind the central striker doesn’t leave much room for flexibility when it comes to the midfield area. They tend to go with a striker, whether it be Adam Armstrong or Sam Gallagher, as one of the wide options.

What’s your score prediction for the game?

Despite the likelihood of a David Raya masterclass, I’m expecting goals. 2-2.

Tickets for tonight's trip to Ewood Park will be on sale from the Away End Ticket Office at the Darwen End of the ground from 6pm on Wednesday, cash and card payment available.

Upper Tier Adults Senior
(65 and over)
18-25's Junior
(aged 12-17)
Under 12s
Matchday £28 £20 £15 £9 £7

If you can't make it to Ewood Park, the match will be shown live on iFollow Brentford for supporters around the world. 

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