Match Report

500 Words After Wigan

Tuesday 7 February 2023

This match was destined to be an awful goalless draw at 7:55pm. It’s baffling how Sky Sports saw any potential in this Lancashire Derby, especially since the last such televised meetup at Ewood ended in a dour 0-0 in December 2019 (the one where Bradley Dack sadly did his ACL).

Rovers are in indifferent form with the lowest ‘xG’ in the league and are suddenly starting to draw matches. Wigan are rooted to the bottom of the league having just appointed a new manager and were happy to scrape any points. Nil-nil.

Sorba Thomas looks like another Ryan Giles, with the ability to deliver a constant supply of dangerous crosses and fortunately JDT isn’t stifling him by playing him on the ‘wrong side’ as Tony Mowbray did with Giles. Despite a few wayward crosses early on, his radar was getting spot on in the second half, just as he was subbed.

Dack is the only player showing any consistent creativity this year and it was no surprise to see him frustrated at being hooked as well around 80 minutes. But it wouldn’t have made any difference if they’d both stayed on.

Ben Brereton Diaz should have been the match-winner early on with a classic Diaz opportunity from Dack’s great forward pass – but this is a man so badly out of form that he looks just like the forlorn 19-year-old we had four years ago. For all the talk of whether Thomas Kaminski and Tyler Morton are worth a start at the moment, surely the time has come to drop Brereton because he’s currently offering nothing.

That late free kick summed it all up. Ryan Hedges had a chance to whip it into the box from the right with most of the team pushed up, yet reverted to that favourite tactic of Rovers this season of messing around with the ball. It went back to Harry Pickering, who sent the ball into Row Z of the Blackburn End from 30 yards. Shocking stuff.

Anyway, here’s a list of some Ewood matches over the years which Sky Sports decided were good for their cameras:

  • Rovers 0-0 Wigan, February 2023
  • Rovers 0-0 Middlesbrough, November 2020
  • Rovers 0-0 Wigan, December 2019
  • Rovers 0-0 Bolton, August 2015
  • Rovers 0-0 Sunderland, October 2010
  • Rovers 0-0 Everton, March 2009
  • Rovers 0-0 Bolton, January 2006
  • Rovers 0-0 Leicester, October 2001
  • Rovers 0-0 Manchester United, May 1999


Some positive news. I picked up 550 copies of 4,000 Holes Issue 107 from the printers at 5pm and managed to ‘leak’ 25 copies out to the public before the match. Thanks for buying. It’s another Special Edition covering tales from 2000 to 2010 – the follow-up to last year’s 2010 to 2020 one which got a lot of decent feedback.

They are planned to properly go on sale at the Swansea match as I need to do all the publicising and posting out of about 150 copies in the next week. If you want to order a copy early doors, the link is here:

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