Jump to content


SINCE 1996
Proudly partnered with TheTerraceStore.com

[Archived] Match Report: Bury 1-1 Blackburn Rovers

Recommended Posts

Parsonblue's match report from yesterday's friendly.

Tuesday 28th July 2015 – Pre-Season Friendly

Bury 1 v 1 Blackburn Rovers

Bury (1) 1

Pope 26

Christian Walton; Joe Riley, Nathan Cameron, Peter Clarke, Chris Hussey; Craig Jones (Chris Sedgewick 69), Tom Soares, Danny Pugh, Hallam Hope; Tom Pope (Danny Rose 65), Leon Clarke.

Sub not used:Rob Lainton (gk), Scott Burgess.

Manager:David Flitcroft

Blackburn Rovers (0) 1

Conway 65

David Raya; Adam Henley, Shane Duffy, Grant Hanley, Tommy Spurr; Jason Lowe (Danny Guthrie 46), Lee Williamson; John O’Sullivan (Willem Tomlinson 46), Ben Marshall, Craig Conway; Nathan Delfouneso (Anthon Forrester 78).

Subs not used: Jason Steele (gk), Connor Mahoney, Ryan Nyambe, Matt Kilgallon.

Manager:Gary Bowyer

Referee: Mr. M. Brown

Bookings: None


As was to be expected the visit to Gigg Lane provided the Rovers with probably their toughest test thus far in pre-season. Once again, Rudy Gestede and Jordan Rhodes were nowhere to be seen as Gary Bowyer opted for a 4-2-3-1 formation with Nathan Delfouneso being given another chance to impress playing as the lone striker. Another match and another trialist on the bench in the form of Danny Guthrie, the former Liverpool and Newcastle United midfield man who was released by Reading at the end of last season.

It was hardly pre-season weather on a chilly and very wet night as the Rovers carved out the first decent chance of the game when Delfouneso held the ball up well and provided John O’Sullivan with the chance to whip a fierce shot into the arms of Christian Walton.

After this early effort from O’Sullivan the game became more even with both sides trying to create chances in difficult conditions.

Excellent work from Jason Lowe and Craig Conway enabled Ben Marshall to try his luck from distance after twenty-two minutes and although the ball appeared to be going wide Walton took no chances and pushed it out for a corner. Moments later Marshall and Lowe were again involved in an intricate movement that enabled Lowe to play in Lee Williamson but his shot struck a defender and deflected against the crossbar before going out for a corner.

However, it was Bury who opened the scoring on twenty-six minutes and, once again, questions had to be asked about the marking in the penalty area. Chris Hussey’s in-swinging free-kick was flicked on by the head of Tom Soares to the back post where Tom Pope had evaded his marker and had the easy task of being able to tap home from close range.

The Rovers almost struck back immediately when a well worked move down the right allowed O’Sullivan to feed Adam Henley on the overlap and the young full-back found Delfouneso in the area. The former Villa man wasted no time in getting away a first time shot but Walton showed good reflexes in the Bury goal to turn the effort away.

Bury responded with a long-range free-kick which full-back Joe Riley struck with venom but the 30 yard effort flew just wide of the angle of post and crossbar.

After 39 minutes it was Raya’s turn to show his agility when Shane Duffy was beaten far too easily by Leon Clarke and the ‘keeper had to save a well struck shot after the Bury man had found himself free in the area and in front of goal.

Four minutes later it was Duffy who fluffed an excellent chance to put the Rovers level when Conway whipped in a free-kick from the left and Duffy was unable to make a connection when unmarked in front of goal as the ball flew past Walton’s post.

In truth the Rovers had struggled to make much headway during the first forty-five minutes and although Delfouneso had made several very promising runs the midfield had simply been unable to find him with any degree of accuracy.

For the start of the second-half Gary Bowyer made a couple of changes with Willem Tomlinson replacing O’Sullivan on the right wing whilst Danny Guthrie replaced Lowe in the centre of midfield.

Bury remained unchanged after the break and on 50 minutes they almost doubled their lead when yet another free-kick into the box caused the Rovers defence problems. Spurr was adjudged to have handled a cross just outside the area and Hussey whipped the ball in with pace from the free-kick. As the Rovers failed to clear their lines the ball fell at the feet of Leon Clarke who blasted the ball goalwards only to see Raya pounce on it on the line with the Bury players claiming that the ball had crossed the line. Fortunately, the officials disagreed.

With Williamsonholding the midfield together and Conway looking a constant threat on the wing, the Rovers pushed forward looking for a goal. Ben Marshall, who was struggling to find his form, struck a free-kick high over the bar but when the former Leicester man did find his touch he played a delightful through ball which picked up the run of Delfouneso. The former Villa man had escaped his markers and raced into the area but his shot was blocked by a last ditch tackle by Hussy.

However, on sixty-five minutes the Rovers were level and once again it was Conway who did the damage. The ball was worked out to Conway some twenty-five yards from goal and the Scottish international moved inside before he curled an inch perfect shot beyond the outstretched arms of Walton into the corner of the net.

The home side made a couple of changes and game became something of an end to end affair as both sides looked to snatch a winner. Williamson was forced to make a timely block when Danny Rose struck a powerful shot and then Duffy sold Raya short with a back pass and was thankful that Hanley was on hand to tidy up. Two minutes later the Spanish ‘keeper was called into action again when another Hussey free-kick caused mayhem in the box and Clarke managed to stoop to try to head the ball in from point blank range but Raya was agile enough to make a superb save.

Bowyer replaced Delfouneso with Forrester after seventy-eight minutes and a couple of minutes later Conway again found space on the edge of the area but his shot flew wide.

This was by far the toughest of the pre-season encounters which the Rovers have faced and in the main was a fairly entertaining affair for a friendly. Raya again established his claim to be the number one ‘keeper at Ewood with a confident display. Although plucked from Spanish football at an early age he has been developed at the Academy and through the Under-21’s and in that sense looks the best home grown goalkeeping prospect since the days of Paul Bradshaw.

Defensively the Rovers had moments of real concern and Shane Duffy had a very indifferent night whilst the new ‘slim line’ Grant Hanley looks to be rediscovering the form which made him such a good prospect under ‘Big Sam’.

In midfield, Lee Williamson, not for the first time this pre-season, was the outstanding performer. As steady as a rock, he provided not only a defensive shield but also got forward and initiated several promising attacking moves. Jason Lowe is clearly still building up fitness levels after his long layoff but Danny Guthrie looked promising playing alongside Williamson in the second half and initiated several attacking moves with long passes from deep positions.

In attack Craig Conway was again the player who caught the eye with an energetic display down the left wing. He always looked the man most likely to make something happened and, once again, he scored with a superb strike.

Nathan Delfouneso again impressed with his movement off the ball and given time, one suspects he could be a very useful addition to the Rovers squad, although much will depend on what happens with the two want-away strikers who seem to be sitting out the pre-season.

One cannot help but feel that the Rhodes/Gestede saga is hanging over the Rovers pre-season preparations like the ‘Sword of Damocles’ and needs to be resolved one way or the other sooner rather than later.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Good to hear Hanley has slimmed down had a good evening - it's been a big learning curve for him this last couple of years but I do think he is a decent defender. Probably needs a leader next to him rather than having to be the leader himself.

Williamson too sounds like he's had a good pre-season. Gets such a lot of flak from the crowd, and his passing can be untidy (or downright appalling), but he does protect the back 4 well. He was absolutely instrumental in our performances against L'pool.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.