Last season we were very lucky to get away with three points at Ewood Park – remember the Tevez goal which shouldn’t have been? If that goal hadn’t been given, instead of playing at Ewood Park this season, we might be at Layer Road.
We’re now in a comfortable mid table position, but a bit of a gap has opened up between us and the Top Nine. Three points are vital today. Several Blackburn players are missing through suspension, including the in-form David Bentley. We have a few players on their way back and for the first time this season Alan Curbishley has a few selection headaches, not least whether to bring Marlk Noble back into the first eleven. Scott Parker and Hayden Mullins, one of our most in form players at the moment, had blinders against Chelsea and do not deserve to be dropped. But football can be a cruel game. Our long term choice for central midfield has to be Noble and Parker. At some point, maybe not today, Mullins will make place for Noble.
I think today is the day to bring back Dean Ashton and partner him with Carlton Cole. This means that Boa Morte would make way, which in some ways would be unfair, as he had a good game against Chelsea too.
There are rumours that Anton Ferdinand is fit and will replace Danny Gabbidon. I suspect that this is not the case and that he will be on the bench. The only other selection dilemma is whether to replace Solano with Ljungberg. Again, Solano has done little wrong and keeping him in will spur him on to greater things. So far this season, Freddie Ljungberg has flattered to deceive.
To be honest, I’m not that optimistic we will come away with three points from here. It’s a ground we tend to do badly on, and although we have won a few times in recent years, it’s not a game we look forward to. Especially when that idiot Robbie Savage is playing.