Date: 25th October 2008 at 8:02pm
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On a chilli,rainy night, Blackburn faced Middlesbrough, who has just come of a spanking to Premier League favourites, Chelsea. Rovers made a few changes to the line up, Derbyshire replacing Roberts, Roque Santa Cruz replacing Fowler, Oijer replacing Samba in the heart of the defence, and Grella making his home debut, replacing Tugay.

In what looked like a defensive outfit, Rovers appeared to start the game with little confidence. An Olsson error early on almost set Aliadiare free, forcing the young Swede to foul. Worryingly for Rovers fans, not a Boro goal, but Mark Hughes was shown on the big screen, am i right that this is the second game in a row he has been watching…..I wonder who he is after….

Boro almost took the early advantage. Riggot sent a lovely ball over the Rovers defence, with Aliadiare only managing to hit the woodwork. Rovers first real chance of the half was from a brilliant piece of play from Grella. A floated ball over the top from Grella sent Emerton free, who’s shot on target was saved by the keeper, earning a corner. Few minutes later, it was Roque’s turn to go close. A nice pass by Warnock set up Santa Cruz, brushing past his defender, striking the inside of the far post, and bouncing back into open play.

Midway through the first half, fortune favoured Rovers. A lofted header by Digard set Tuncay free, who’s overhead bicycle kick found the back of the net, but he was controversially flagged offside. Carlos Villanueva was finding his feet, however a flash of brilliance in the 38th minute got the Rovers fans excited. Carlos took the ball in full flight, spun and layed it of, almost in one motion, but Warnock could only find the grandstand.

An entertaining first half in miserable weather, with both sides unlucky not to be leading at the break, 0-0.

A slow start to the second half, with foul after foul eventuating in Matt Derbyshire being cautioned. Not too long after, it was Derbyshire to make way for Benni McCarthy. The change almost payed dividens. An excellent surging run by Brett Emerton was followed by a delightful one-two with Benni Mc, with Santa Cruz being released. The fortnight of must have rusted of Roque, with the ball becoming stuck in his stried, opportunity gone.

Rovers where made to pay for there poor finishing, with a long ball setting ALves free, who skipped around Oijer and blasted into the back of the net. 1-0 Boro….

An attacking change for Rovers followed, Olsson of, Treacy on. The match started to disspointingly fizz out, with Blackburn suddenly lacking any attacking threat. 4 minutes of injury time…

Rovers were awarded a free kick just inside the attacking half, taken by Warnock and cleared for a corner. In a last ditch attempt, it was all guns blazing with Paul Robinson surging into the box. A delightful corner found Benni McCarthy free on the edge of the 6 yard box, up he went, a strong powerful header into the back corner of the net. 1-1 at Ewood

Manager Rating
Im confued. Warnock and Grella both in central midfield? Two defensive minded midfielders, with Carlos on one wing, and Emerton on the other. Surely Gamst is not that out of favour.

However credit must go to Ince for not starting Benni Mc and bringing him on later in the game. Match Fitness is what he needs, hopefully he might be ready for a start next time round

Benni McCarthy
Isnt it greawt just to see him again, let alone on the score sheet. It has been longer then a year since he has scored from open play, and when he jumped up for that header, it always looked in. Darn it, if only Roberts can learn

BRING HIM BACK. The Sasman is a big fan of the Gamst. The Gamst offers what others dont, a delightful cross, and a chest of skills. Carlos needs to be playing more central, just infront of Grella who will make the space for him. Get Gamst on the flank, and Warnock back in defence. Look at our scoring record, 9 goals in 9 games? Thats poor, we need delivery and opportunities.


18 Replies to “Benni salvages a point”

  • and no offence sas but? whats with the comment on gamst! ye he really is that bad, his crossin has gone awful! he doesnt beat the 1st man!!! and skills eh? are u serious! come on you might like him but but he simply AINT GOOD ENOUGH!

  • this is a real dilemma, and i can see where sasman is coming from. after watching carlos playing for the first time closely for the boro, he appears to be fitted to play in the middle. he tends to cut back in when he’s out wide anyway. props to derbyshire for working so hard, but he is not meant to play on the flank, let alone the left one. treacy is far from becoming starting material. he looks confused when he was on the pitch.
    in some way, gamst is still our best bet on the left, although i agree he has not been doing his job.
    final note, it’s time to put warnock back to defense. warnock was always imposing when he was at left back, olsson was shaky today.

  • Did carlos, warnock, treacy or pedersen play on the flank… no! derbyshire did and yeh he was useless but at least he wnts to play for blackburn not runnin 2 the press and sayhis tht hes sick of being substituted! pedersen if to soft and easy to figure out

  • One thing I want to say is that I am sorry for criticising Emo for so long as he is fast becoming my favourite Rover. Always gives the team 100% no matter what position he is played in and even tries to convince his aussie mates to come and join the party too. Top bloke

  • On the match itself, Gamst has been droppped for the right reasons he is performing at the same level as treacy or anyone else for that matter. If we were to forget what he did a few years ago we would be saying he should be nowhere near the team simple as! I agree taht Grella was pretty good today got stuck in when needed. however for grella to be really effective he needs dunny or some such player in beside him. IMO benni wasnt that good when he came on in terms of quality but he was certainly up for it and ill take that over the usual benni anyday. Matty isnt a winger-get him in the box and watch him do the damage. Today wasnt a good result although when ya think we drew with boro at ewood last season its not all bad

  • Regarding the MGP issue I think that the biggest problem with him is that he became familiar in the EPL long time ago. He aint this fresh winger from Norway but a well known star, and thus people learnt the way to close him down: they know he can’t round a player so they give him much more space, but they don’t let him get into the center of the area because they know he’s a gifted scorer.
    Since Treacy does’nt seem to be the new Duff/Ripley and Peter is injured since 2002 I’d say we should bring a LW: Jon Ledley or S. Hunt would do the job just fine!

  • We created enough chances to have put them to bed – could of been 3 or 4 but Boro defended well and we were wasteful – sadly Matty was the main culprit. Nelsen was excellent at the back and Sas is right – Grella had a great game but doesnt suit playing with Warnock – change that Ince.

  • I thought Grells had a good game. But I echo many opinons that he needs a Dunn or Carlos playing alongside to be a fully effective midfield. Warnock again was lost in midfield, get him back to left back! I don’t think Gamst would had added anything different to Saturday’s game. We had anough chances to win. I don’t think Robinson had anything to do, apart from picking the ball out of the the goal twice…Turnbull as clearly the more busier of the keepers. However, saying that, we didn’t score the 3 or 4 goals that we should have done, and I think it was 2 points dropped.

  • I’m probably gonna get some stick here lads but i thought Ince got it completely wrong on Saturday…..I’ve been very supportive of him recently after my initial scepticism but to play with only one forward at home to Middlesborough was scandalous!!! He’s been ranting on about Benni looking sharp in training all week and then leaves him on the bench!!! Warnock is NOT a central midfielder and against Boro i would have played CV in the centre with Grella, Warnock back to left back and Benni up front. An early goal against them would have caused a landslide…..he was too negative from the out set and RSC never got the support in and around him….Having said that had RSC been fully fit then i believe he would have got a couple on the night!!! 1-1 at home to Boro is NOT a good result and i really think that the tactics were at fault. Mr Ince has to take this one on the chin i’m afraid….PS get Warnock out of midfiel, it was ok as a temp measure but the guy doesn’t pass or play correctly in this position and needs to go back to what he knows best!!

  • I dont think Warnock had a bad game at all. i agree with mani that he shouldnt be used there permanently but he didnt have as bad a game as some suggest.

  • I have to agree that i think playing Warnock in the middle of midfield is not the beat idea, he IS are best left back, no offense to Olsson there cos i like him and think he will only get better, but to leave Gamst and Vogel out of the entire squad, then to leave Andrews on the bench, i just cant see his thinking there, yes as i said in another article Andrews is only coming to terms with the league and the pace but its just seems odd is all to have Warnock there…I would play Carlos as a 2nd striker too, with Gamst behind him, i know we have loads of strikers but i think it would work, Benni has to prove his fitness and desire before he goes straight back in the team in my opinion.

  • I really liked some periods of the game. The ball posesion percentage must have benn BRFC 75 %. Boro 25 %. We had the ball all the game long, and we should’ve scored 2 or 3 goals in the firts half. I liked Carlos V. game…he participated a lot and tried to lead the team by creating situations. I’m glad for BenniMc…when he’s fit, then he must play. Grella: FANTASTIC. And I must say…I liked Warnock in the middle!. To be fair…we deserved to win, but like Walker could have been worse. Good performance…not so great result

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