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PLAYER WATCH v Stoke City (H)

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PLAYER WATCH v Stoke City (H)

Each incident in the match was rated on the following scale: 

+5 GOAL 

+4 Excellent play 

+3 Very good play 

+2 Pleasing/good play 

+1 Decent play 

  0 Routine stuff 

-1 Sloppy play 

 -2 Disappointing/poor play  

 -3 Very poor play 

 -4 Terrible play 

 -5 Own goal 

The ratings for each player were then combined to produce a measure of the players overall contribution to the match. 


Key incidents per player = coloured stars              Overall contribution = numbers

Kaminski                *****  *     4                              

Nyambe                 *************  ****     15

Lenihan                  ***************  *****     18     

van Hecke (45)      ******  ******    -4

Wharton                **********  *************     -4

Pickering               *************** *********     15

Travis                     ************** ******     13

Johnson (66)         *****  **********     -5

Dolan (74)             ***  ******     -4    

Gallagher               ****************** ******     20

Diaz                        ********  ******    0


Rothwell (45)        ******  ***     

Buckley (66)          *******  *     9

Hedges (74)           *****  *     7


Highlights and Lowlights 

(A justification for the main ratings given above)


The teams around us keep losing so we are still floating around the top 6 remarkably. Stoke in mid-table have nothing to play for so we’ll be OK today.


03 It’s a simple ball slipped through the middle to Brown 35 yards out. Wharton is on him but somehow lets him turn and run clear. Kaminski comes out to meet him but from the edge of the box Brown slides the ball past him and into the net. Terrible defending.

09 Stoke are passing around with confidence. We can’t get the ball and when we do we lose it. Also we are conceding an alarming number of free kicks. Lenihan is the culprit this time.

15 Devoid of ideas as we pass the ball back and forth (mainly back) around the halfway line.

19 The 2nd or 3rd poor foul by Wharton.

23 Pickering is taking all the set-pieces today. Here he puts a decent ball into the Stoke box. Wharton and van Hecke go for the ball and head each other.

25 Stoke are happy to stroll around with the ball at the back and there’s absolutely no pressing from Rovers.

29 Rovers lack ambition; under no pressure we go from halfway to Kaminski when Nyambe was the only man in our half!

31 Another Wharton rugby tackle earns him a yellow card. He was turned too easily by Brown..

33 This time it’s van Hecke who can’t handle Brown. Foul on halfway and another yellow card.

36 Another nice delivery from Pickering from the corner. Van Hecke is in space but his header is well over. Disappointing.

37 Oh dear! Van Hecke is beaten again and resorts to pulling the man down. Lucky not to receive a second yellow…..much worse than Edun’s efforts last game. He has a tendency to lose his head JP.

39 Johnson fires the ball forward but it’s intercepted. It doesn’t matter though as both Diaz and Gallagher were offside!

42 Dolan slides the ball to Diaz on the right wing and he miscontrols but Bellis slips and Ben heads to the box. It’s a good run but he’s wide and his shot from a narrow angle is saved at the near post.

43 Diaz, at the near post heads a Stoke corner straight to a City man on the penalty spot. Lenihan is the only Rover to react and as he slides in the ball is blocked for another corner which Diaz heads out of the box this time.

46 A good strong run by Gallagher deep into the box but there’s too many defenders and he loses the ball.

Half time and Pickering throws the ball into the ground. Frustration abounds. Boos ring around Ewood and this shadow of a team looks broken.


45 Rothwell on, van Hecke off….to save him from an inevitable red card!

46 Dolan dives.

53 Travis gets a chance to shoot from just outside the box but there’s a reason he hasn’t scored forever and the ball sails 10 yards wide.

54 At last some neat interplay between Rothwell, Travis and Gallagher and Sam steams off towards the box again but as before he is dispossessed.

55 Stoke cuts us apart again and Nyambe just gets a foot in to put the City man off his shot. 

67 We get a free kick 32 yards out and Diaz is standing in a blatantly offside position….so it’s all a waste!

69 Buckley somehow manages to survive a couple of robust challenges and Diaz lays the ball off nicely to Pickering on the wing. He puts in another good cross and Gallagher rises above the Stoke man 10 yards out. His header is brilliantly saved by the keeper just under the bar. The ball comes to an unmarked Travis on the edge of the box who performs his usual Row T mis-shot.

71 Buckley has definitely made a difference. A nice little run here but it went just over the byline.

72 Dolan, for some reason, tries to lob a harmless ball goalwards from just outside the box. It’s well over. Then he falls over again. He’s having another poor game.

74 Dolan is put out of his misery. He’s off and Hedges is on.

Some nice footwork from Hedges around their box followed by a cross square through the penalty spot but there’s no one there.

75 A nice ball from Rothwell to Gallagher just to the left of the box. Sam sends it square into the box but it seemed to bounce off Hedges’ legs! 

76 A lovely ball from Buckley into the box on to Gallagher’s chest but he’s offside!

80 Lenihan loses out to  Bidace and Brown eventually gets the ball on their right. His cross comes in; there’s 4 men in the goalmouth, Wharton misses it and the rest fall down! It hit Maja I think but Nyambe somehow got his foot to it first! Comedy hour!

Rothwell runs the ball out of the box and Hedges performs a delightful backflick to Travis and he feeds Gallagher near halfway. Sam’s off, he does a quick 1-2 with Hedges and fires in a decent shot from 25 yards but the goalie saves at his near post at the 2nd attempt.

82 A nice block in our box by Travis

83 Buckley threads a neat ball down the left wing to Gallagher’s feet, midway in the Stoke half, and Sam’s steaming away and into the box again. This time he fires in his shot from a narrow angle and it scrapes the top of the bar! He’s having quite a game today. Worthy of an equaliser that one.

88 Rovers’ defence is stretched and Brown receives and moves into the box before firing his shot at goal but it’s at Kaminski and he parries it back to Brown and this time his shot hits Lenihan’s arm. No penalty! Fortunate.

90 Diaz offside again!

91 Travis from 28 yards lofts a ball into the box and Hedges, 9 yards out, gets a good glancing header on target inside the left post but the keeper is equal to it and pulls off an excellent diving save. Diaz hits the rebound into the side-netting.

94 The final whistle goes along with any dreams we may have been holding on to. Killed by another terrible first half. A very unhappy Easter!

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11 hours ago, Herbie6590 said:

Nice to see Sam Gallagher top the poll for a change…

He’s the most frustrating bloke. Sometimes, I swear, he’s the worst forward I’ve seen…..other times, like Saturday, he was a real handful. How can that happen?

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9 hours ago, Miller11 said:

I caught up on the game last night for some reason. All looks about right from what I saw, although I did expect Travis would score lower. Our midfield was pretty hopeless.

What gets me….our centre backs have been the usual top scorers consistently….now they’ve fallen apart. Ayala seems to be out of the picture completely. He was a big influence, I think, when we were putting together that “impenetrable” back 5 back in the day.

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11 minutes ago, tonyoz said:

He’s the most frustrating bloke. Sometimes, I swear, he’s the worst forward I’ve seen…..other times, like Saturday, he was a real handful. How can that happen?

He was till it was time to pull the trigger; I thought all the efforts on goal were poor technique: soft header, mis-timed header, hit the bar when he should’ve just curled it in. Got into great positions but let himself down imo.

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1 minute ago, Exiled in Toronto said:

He was till it was time to pull the trigger; I thought all the efforts on goal were poor technique: soft header, mis-timed header, hit the bar when he should’ve just curled it in. Got into great positions but let himself down imo.

Yes, agreed, but he did cause trouble. He’s not my cup of tea but we’re stuck with him!

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