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Goodbye 2004


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At the dawn of a new year, I hope in footballing terms 2005 turns out to be more memorable and enjoyable for Rovers supporters than 2004.

Rovers started 2004, in 14th position in the league with 21 points after beating Newcastle with a solitary goal from Paul Gallagher, a game that was to see Ferguson damage his knee and rule him out for the remainder of the season.

Things were not to get any better as Rovers were knocked out of the FA Cup at the first hurdle by Birmingham 4-0 at St Andrews and a league win didn’t arrive until February, when new signing Jon Stead from Huddersfield got the winner away at Middlesbrough.

With only one win during March 2 – 0 away at Villa, Rovers goal difference was the only factor that kept them out of the bottom three after a diabolical performance and defeat at Ewood to relegation candidates Leeds United.

With the drop looking inevitable Rovers turned the season around in April, starting with a 4 – 3 win away to Fulham, followed by consecutive wins against Leicester, Everton and Manchester United; and although they only managed one point from their remaining two fixture, they finished 15th with 44 points as Leeds, Leicester and Wolves were relegated.

During the summer there was no major acquisitions in the transfer market by Rovers, with Dickov, Matteo, De Pedro and Pederson coming in, whilst Cole joined Fulham.

Rovers started the 2004-05 season in poor form and were in the bottom three at the start of September, when Graeme Souness jumped ship to join Newcastle. To their credit the Rovers board were quick to react and Wales Manager Mark Hughes was appointed as the new Rovers manager, who oversaw Rovers first win of the season against Portsmouth, with a goal from the recalled fans favourite Matt Jansen.

Hughes appointment wasn’t however to be an instant success, as he juggled his managerial duties between Rovers and Wales for the first month. Exit from the League cup by Bournemouth and consecutive 4 – 0 defeats by Boro and Chelsea saw grey clouds gather over Ewood; before Hughes and his newly appointed back room staff started to turn things around at Ewood. A period that saw the departure, after over 30 years at the club, of Tony Parkes.

As we go into the first game of 2005 with 19 points and 15th in the league Rovers are virtually in the same position as they started 2004. However as we prepare for the first game of 2005, away to Villa, Rovers appear to be in better shape than last year, have only lost one of their last ten games.

Lets hope we can look back at 2005 with fonder memories.

Happy New Year.

Link to Fans Memories of 2004

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