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Won't stop a small handful criticising him, which frankly is starting to piss me off. I get having scapegoats of our worst players all the time, there's always a weak link in a side to be improved. Bu

Its absolutely no coincidence that Elliott on Tuesday, with quite frankly less able team mates around him, was poor. With Rothwell, Brereton, Armstrong and to an extent Johnson round him he looke

Lest we forget, Brereton is still 21. Hope he continues on his trajectory 

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With 12 guys out vs Boro, & still getting a gutty draw, I don’t think the attitude of our players is giving their best effort. After the break, I hope there isn’t an overconfidence borne of getting key players back. The team still has to work hard, to get any positive result. 

Somebody said earlier two points at Ewood this week isn’t enough; we’re 17th; a point tomorrow won’t even get us to 16th. Hopefully, we see Rovers get all 3. This fixture 10 months ago saw us win, 2-1, on goals by Armstrong & Lenihan. I would gratefully take the same result tomorrow. 

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A little thing I did earlier this week with the excellent @loftforwords site previewing the game...

https://www.fansnetwork.co.uk/football/queensparkrangers/news/53337

 

Injuries chewing into Rovers' promising start - Interview
Friday, 6th Nov 2020 13:38 by Clive Whittingham

Blackburn had an excellent transfer window, and started with a hail of goals scored, but growing problems with injuries and Covid-19 are undermining Tony Mowbray's side according to BRFCS Podcast host Ian Herbert. 

 

How was last season for you?

It ended up being another season of consolidation but it threatened, albeit fleetingly, just before Christmas and once again right after lockdown, to deliver a play-off finale. Instead, all that was on the matt behind the front door was a red and white docket of doom, indicating that as we were out, our package of opportunity had been left with Swansea. 

A place in the play-offs would have been an incredible achievement, especially given the loss of our talisman, Bradley Dack, for more than half a season. But in the end, the combination of a brittle defence and a pair of expensive, goal-shy (wide) strikers resulted in an eleventh-placed finish, four places higher and three points better off than 2019. 

As is usual, the final league table rarely lies and in this instance, it would have survived the close scrutiny of an enthusiastic prosecution barrister in a court of law. Rovers were not as good as we had hoped, but not as bad as we had sometimes feared. 

Some notable highs, including a 5-0 victory at Hillsborough were balanced out by some extraordinary lows. Kenilworth Road, for the final game of this extended season, proved the point admirably, as Rovers contrived to lose 3-2; despite Luton registering only a single shot on target during the game. Never change Rovers.

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Very up and down start to the season for Blackburn, some big wins and defeats, how do you assess it overall?

A look at the nascent league table indicates that those teams we have ruthlessly put to the sword are congregated very much towards the bottom end of the division and so any euphoria from those wins needs to be contextualised. The not inconsiderable benefit of playing ten men for large parts of a couple of those games was seemingly more influential than perhaps initially we wanted to admit. However, we have struggled against sides a man down historically, including the last 20 minutes or so against Cardiff City only last month, so when we do take advantage it rather bucks the trend and warms the heart.

Since returning to the Championship, Rovers have tended to come up short when playing anyone decent, the hope was that our record against the top six especially might improve this season but particularly the dispiriting defeats at home to Forest and Reading and away to Watford and Swansea have sucked the life out of our season after just ten games.

Blackburn league results so far… 
Bournemouth 3-2 Blackburn Stacey 25, Lerma 53, Groeneveld 84 – Johnson 42, Armstrong 73 
Blackburn 5-0 Wycombe Armstrong pen 16, 33, 84, Dolan 20, Williams 67 
Derby 0-4 Blackburn Dolan 11, Johnson 12, 15, Armstrong 77 
Blackburn 0-0 Cardiff 
Blackburn 0-1 Forest Taylor 90 
Watford 3-1 Blackburn Pedro 13, Cleverley 17, Lenihan og 49 – Brereton 28 
Coventry 0-4 Blackburn Armstrong pen 15, 49, Elliott 62, Gallagher 88 
Blackburn 2-4 Reading Armstrong 3, 66, Meite 1, Olise 15, Laurent 18, Joao 82 
Swansea 2-0 Blackburn Cabango 25, Ayew 61 
Blackburn 0-0 Middlesbrough

I personally thought Blackburn had a better transfer window than almost any club in the league, given relative budgets etc, how do you assess the business done?

The last window was undoubtedly our best for years. At its closure, it seemed that Rovers were serious about promotion after all. Almost all of the holes in the squad seemed to have been filled; new goalkeepers, a left back, a centre back, central midfielder, maverick winger, tricky wide forward, things were looking good. The only doubt was whether the loss of Danny Graham without a like for like replacement would prove to be problematical. Ben Brereton has therefore been ordered to grow a beard and adopt an Alice band and as a consequence the immediate panic has subsided; he even scored a terrific goal against Watford.

Considering that Rovers were allegedly sailing perilously close to the wind of FFP prior to COVID, the backing from the owners, albeit largely on loan signings, was welcome news and lifted spirits across the fanbase quite dramatically. At the time of writing however, upon checking the table, we don’t yet appear to have been awarded any points for “winning the window”.

Ins>> Thomas Kaminski, 27, GK, Gent, £450k >>> Aynsley Pears, 22, GK< Middlesbrough, £400k >>> Antonis Stergiakis, 21, GK, Slavia Sofia, Free >>> Thyrys Dolan, 18, RW, PNE, Free >>> Daniel Ayala, 29, CB, Middlesbrough, Free >>> Tom Trybull, 27, CM, Norwich, Loan >>> Harvey Elliott, 17, RW, Liverpool, Loan >>> Barry Douglas, 31, LB, Leeds, Loan

Outs >>> Richard Smallwood, 29, CM, Hull, Free >>> Dominic Samuel, 26, CF, Gillingham, Free >>> Danny Graham, 34, CF, Sunderland, Free >>> Sam Hart, 23, LB, Released >>> Jayson Leutwiler, 31, GK, Fleetwood, Free >>> Charlie Mulgrew, 34, CB, Fleetwood, Loan

No sooner had I Tweeted that, than Rovers lost to Forest at home, and have now lost four out of six and conceded ten in the process, what’s gone wrong of late other than me opening my big mouth?

Many and various factors are at play I suspect, combining to rip out the heart of Tony Mowbray’s cunning plans. These include adopting a vibrant new (Liverpool-influenced) formation (no, really), integrating so many players into the side at once, the impacts of COVID, a lengthening injury list and loss of form of a couple of key players (Lenihan & Nyambe). Following the extraordinary goalless game against Middlesbrough on Tuesday evening in which Rovers defending was a footballing tribute to the defence of the Alamo, Rovers now genuinely have a complete XI unavailable, of which you would reasonably say six or seven would normally start (Thomas Kaminski, Elliott Bennett, Daniel Ayala, Derrick Williams, Amari’i Bell, Barry Douglas, Lewis Travis, Bradley Dack, Adam Armstrong, Tom Trybull, Bradley Johnson and Stewart Downing).

No manager can reasonably be expected to accommodate such absences without an adverse impact in all fairness. Whether we should have coped better than we have in practice is a point for debate.

Latest temperature check on the general mood towards Tony Mowbray?

Whilst we haven’t crossed the Rubicon just now, we are in the coach en route & can see the roadsigns counting down the distance. The additions to the squad, especially Thomas Kaminski in goal, Barry Douglas at left back and Daniel Ayala at centre back addressed the biggest pre-season issues in the team; the addition of the exciting Liverpool youngster Harvey Elliott on loan promises much and the early-season form of Adam Armstrong all pointed to increased (realistic) aspirations.

A genuine attempt to reach the play-offs seemed eminently reasonable in terms of expectations but the disruptions mentioned above seemed to have de-railed our efforts no sooner has our promotion train left the station.

Mowbray’s tenure is not under any immediate threat it appears. The owners seem content to let him continue, but this season already is taking on the mantle of make or break - if not with the owners, with the supporters, many of whom struggle to point to a substantive progression.

For what it’s worth, my view is that he has been given the tools to do the job this season and it’s not wholly unreasonable to expect to see some meaningful progress. 

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Where is the team strong and where is it weak?

At the moment, we are weak in all areas due to the injury/Covid-19 crises noted above, just putting out a team and a full complement on the bench would be a triumph of sorts. We are down to ‘Arry Redknapp style bare bones and so anticipating what First XI can be selected on Saturday is a fool’s errand right now.

With everyone fit and ready, Lewis Travis, Bradley Dack, Adam Armstrong and Harvey Elliott would ordinarily worry most opponents in the Championship but only Elliott played on Tuesday and Armstrong is by no means certain to return at the weekend.

With a second choice keeper, a makeshift defence, a rag-tag midfield and a pair of strikers who cost £12m boasting two goals from 18 appearances so far this season likely to feature on Saturday, we are there frankly for the taking.

What are your expectations for the season now you’ve seen the team and the rest of the division?

Before our successful window I was predicting fifteenth; I re-calibrated that to “a serious play-off push” after reviewing the array of incoming talent but having seen via iFollow how it’s all falling apart then matching last season’s eleventh feels like a challenge. 

“When everyone comes back we will be fine..” is something to hang our hats on but experience tells me that no club ever has a full complement of players fit, firing and raring to go, there are always injuries, suspensions and this time, Covid-19 to contend with. 

Rovers would do well to grind out a few more ugly results to keep us “above the fold” if at all possible by Christmas, then we can re-group, re-assess and “Go Again” in the second half of the season.

Links >>> Official website >>> Lancashire Telegraph – Local Paper >>> BRFCS message board and podcast >>> Rovers Chat – Blog

The Twitter @ianherbert, @loftforwords

Pictures – Action Images

 

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2 hours ago, JHRover said:

It goes without saying that there will be harm to attendances across the board and clubs are really going to have their work cut out to try and address it.

What I am interested in is how our decline compares to those elsewhere at rival clubs. I am expecting us to be one of the worst affected, and I don't believe that this will be down to 'demographics' or the local population, but will be down to a shoddy poorly thought out strategy from those running the club.

Lets assume that fans will be allowed back without restrictions for the 2021-22 season. Lets assume we are still on the road to nowhere with Mowbray in the summer. Then Waggott is going to have to work his socks off over the summer to get people back. It isn't going to be easy, or quick, but serious, sustained and innovative ideas need to be rolled out to do it and re-engage supporters and get people back in the habit. Groundhog day just won't sell.

I'm afraid sticking an extra £50 on the price and attempting to emotionally blackmail supporters into signing up will just alienate even more.

'As you were folks' and 'we're committed, are you?' attitude to it will not bring people back. This is going to be the stage when a £300,000 a year CEO needs to earn his salary.

Sadly I don't think Waggott has the capability, innovation or interest never mind the freedom to spearhead such a thing. All he will do is propose a pricing structure and await approval from the money men in India.

Scary really whilst Accy Stanley are this week distributing free kits to Hyndburn primary school children. Keep them interested, keep them hooked.

Totally agree with you there, JHRover.

I'm currently listening to 'Out of their League', the podcast about the way in Bury AFC was established in the wake of Bury FC being kicked out of the EFL. Earlier today, I listened to an episode describing the importance of involving young volunteers in establishing the Phoenix club. The majority of the older Bury AFC fans won't be that fussed about doing jobs around the place but if you can get the youngsters on board, . . .

So it'll have to be at Ewood; we have to appeal to the younger generation. They are the 'us on here' of the 2030s and going forward who'll, hopefully, carry the torch of This historically Great Club Of Ours forward.

It sounds like Stanley have grasped that; it's pathetic if Waggott - is he really on £300,000 a year? What ideas does he come up with to warrant such a salary? - can't.

Because without some radical thinking at Ewood for the post-Virus era, I fear for the attendance figures once fans can be re-admitted to the ground. And that leads onto fearing about the very existence of the club in the medium- to long-term.

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5 hours ago, Mercer said:

Mowbray in LT on Downing:

“But as I sit here, he hasn’t done anything in the last three months and you can’t come and train for two days and think you can go and go and affect a football match".

So Downing hasn't done anything in three months which is approximately the length of time between the final league game of a closing season and the opening league game of a new season.

So based on a normal pre season of 5/6 weeks or so, I would not have thought he would be 'match fit' until the middle of December by which time we'll have played 18 or 19 games.  IMO, what a nonsense - a desperate signing by a desperate manager.

 

It could be worse, Mercer; I'm still half-waiting, half-fearing Mowbray announcing the signing of Stuart Ripley!

Well, he must be the only Teesside-born player we haven't signed in the last few years!

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15 hours ago, Tom said:

Sadly I didn’t have a clue who we were playing and have no inclination to buy a streaming pass.

I wish it wasn’t this way but struggling for any enthusiasm 

You're not the only one, Tom.

I'm technologically incompetent; and because Mrs. M1st & I never had any children, I don't now have any grandchildren to watch my feeble attempts to load an iFollow programme and say, "Oh Grandad; it's dead easy!"

And if I couldn't do it last season when it was 'free', I'm certainly not going to blow £10 per game on it this season when I haven't renewed my season ticket.

So I have to check the BBC Sport website to check who our next opponents are.

It's sad; very sad.

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I heard mumblings that Armstrong may in fact make this match but lets wait and see.  Whoever plays a dramatic improvement needs to take place as we cant be scraping draws at home like we did midweek.  Dare I say it, we have a good record against QPR and if ever we needed a bit of positivity it is now. Downing free kick to seal it?

 

 

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52 minutes ago, m1st said:

It could be worse, Mercer; I'm still half-waiting, half-fearing Mowbray announcing the signing of Stuart Ripley!

Well, he must be the only Teesside-born player we haven't signed in the last few years!

Hahaha, the signing of Stuart Ripley!....at 52 he could offer us something lol

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3 hours ago, WacoRover said:

With 12 guys out vs Boro, & still getting a gutty draw, I don’t think the attitude of our players is giving their best effort. After the break, I hope there isn’t an overconfidence borne of getting key players back. The team still has to work hard, to get any positive result. 

Somebody said earlier two points at Ewood this week isn’t enough; we’re 17th; a point tomorrow won’t even get us to 16th. Hopefully, we see Rovers get all 3. This fixture 10 months ago saw us win, 2-1, on goals by Armstrong & Lenihan. I would gratefully take the same result tomorrow. 

13 out now. People who wanted to get him toughened up now have their wish. 
 

https://www.hartlepoolmail.co.uk/sport/football/hartlepool-united-confirm-loan-signing-blackburn-rovers-defender-tyler-magloire-who-faster-psg-star-kylian-mbappe-3028149

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Just now, bigbrandjohn said:

be a steep learning curve in physicallity,hopefully he`ll come back being able to head a football,apart from lacking that mandatary asset he`s not half bad

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Mate is a QPR fan so I end up absorbing a lot of QPR information and am usually on the look out to make sure that Rovers finish above them as our annual £20 bet is on the line. 

I would describe QPR very similar to us form and style wise. Warburton likes to play the 'right' way and they seemingly go through spells of form and death spirals like we do. If you look at our form the last two years, when we have been in form so have QPR and when out of form they have too. We have literally mirrored each other but both seasons we have ended up with a few more points at the seasons end. QPR lost by far the best player in the Championship in the summer in Eze, whom I am very surprised hasn't found his feet quicker in the Premier Leauge. They still have Bright Osaye-Samuel who is fast and physical and is gradually adding an end product to his game. There were a lot of changes for QPR over the summer though with numerous players brought in with the Eze money making them a little hard to judge.  

Personally I would say given our current form there is no better side for us to be facing right now as like us, they can be a soft touch. I don't see them necessarily outbattling us which we are vulnerable too. Though I am basing this much on last seasons team.

Hopefully we can get 3 points on the board before the international break, ready for a few players to come back from injury and we can then push on. In my opinion Mowbray is here to stay so as Souy said we've got to 'wee with the willy were given'. I still have faith in the large majority of our squad if we can get them on the itch together so we need to use this winnable game as a springboard. 

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Just now, ben_the_beast said:

Mate is a QPR fan so I end up absorbing a lot of QPR information and am usually on the look out to make sure that Rovers finish above them as our annual £20 bet is on the line. 

I would describe QPR very similar to us form and style wise. Warburton likes to play the 'right' way and they seemingly go through spells of form and death spirals like we do. If you look at our form the last two years, when we have been in form so have QPR and when out of form they have too. We have literally mirrored each other but both seasons we have ended up with a few more points at the seasons end. QPR lost by far the best player in the Championship in the summer in Eze, whom I am very surprised hasn't found his feet quicker in the Premier Leauge. They still have Bright Osaye-Samuel who is fast and physical and is gradually adding an end product to his game. There were a lot of changes for QPR over the summer though with numerous players brought in with the Eze money making them a little hard to judge.  

Personally I would say given our current form there is no better side for us to be facing right now as like us, they can be a soft touch. I don't see them necessarily outbattling us which we are vulnerable too. Though I am basing this much on last seasons team.

Hopefully we can get 3 points on the board before the international break, ready for a few players to come back from injury and we can then push on. In my opinion Mowbray is here to stay so as Souy said we've got to 'wee with the willy were given'. I still have faith in the large majority of our squad if we can get them on the itch together so we need to use this winnable game as a springboard. 

I don’t know anything about QPR except that samuel is quality and will run any of our full backs ragged , including if the injured and COVID hit  ones where fit

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1 minute ago, Oldgregg86 said:

I don’t know anything about QPR except that samuel is quality and will run any of our full backs ragged , including if the injured and COVID hit  ones where fit

I remember watching him skin Bennett (not hard I know) time and time again a couple of years ago, only to see him repeatedly hammer it into the stands. Hopefully he has one of those days tomorrow but he does seem more consistent and less raw these days.

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1 hour ago, ben_the_beast said:

I remember watching him skin Bennett (not hard I know) time and time again a couple of years ago, only to see him repeatedly hammer it into the stands. Hopefully he has one of those days tomorrow but he does seem more consistent and less raw these days.

Osaye-Samuel is a doubt for tomorrow so let’s hope he doesn’t make it 

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10 hours ago, Mercer said:

Mowbray in LT on Downing:

“But as I sit here, he hasn’t done anything in the last three months and you can’t come and train for two days and think you can go and go and affect a football match".

So Downing hasn't done anything in three months which is approximately the length of time between the final league game of a closing season and the opening league game of a new season.

So based on a normal pre season of 5/6 weeks or so, I would not have thought he would be 'match fit' until the middle of December by which time we'll have played 18 or 19 games.  IMO, what a nonsense - a desperate signing by a desperate manager.

We are so lucky to have a manager like this.

In the middle of a crisis with so many players not fit to play he decides to bring in another one. :rolleyes: 

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12 minutes ago, chaddyrovers said:

is Kaminski back fit given that both Stergiaski have played for under 23's tonight? 

I think Armstrong will be on the bench at least

Vale and Paton both injured too!

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27 minutes ago, chaddyrovers said:

is Kaminski back fit given that both Stergiaski have played for under 23's tonight? 

I think Armstrong will be on the bench at least

Unless he is 100 percent I’d rather rest him and go into the break. Hamstrings are so easily tweaked and could be out for a 2-3 months for the sake of 90 minutes it’s not worth the risk when he is our only source of goals

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8 minutes ago, Oldgregg86 said:

Unless he is 100 percent I’d rather rest him and go into the break. Hamstrings are so easily tweaked and could be out for a 2-3 months for the sake of 90 minutes it’s not worth the risk when he is our only source of goals

If he’s our only source of goals then tomorrow’s target is a 0-0. That’s pretty depressing! Even more depressing given I’ve just bought a match pass.

All of a sudden our transfer window business looks just as bad as the previous 4. What on earth happened to Dack? He was due back imminently and now... silence. (Coincidentally just when his TV career is getting going.

We need someone to step up and knock a couple in.

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4 minutes ago, Stuart said:

What on earth happened to Dack?

He has had a couple of setbacks. Should be back in month time. Not even in contact training yet. His injury was a major one and something that was always going to happened was setbacks. He mention one of the injury in his show with his missus

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