Date: 16th November 2008 at 1:21am
Written by:

After the midweek triumph against the visitors in the Carling cup, Blackburn made several changes to the line up, restoring Samba, Gamst, Santa Cruz and Oijer to the starting line up.

Rovers got the game of to a flyer, and should have been in the lead. A cross by Gamst Pedersen was headed down into the path of Steven Warnock. However Stevie could only blast his half-volley wide of the goal. Blackburn continued to pressure the defence. A brace of corners almost found Rovers in the lead, the first a deflected header by Zurab, was scrambled of the line. THe following corner found the head of Roque Santa Cruz, who could only manage the cross bar.

Gamst Pedersen continued his fine start to the game, forcing Sunderland stand in keeper Fulop into a great save after a 25 yard free kick. Rovers almost rued their missed chances, with Djibril Cisse set free by a delightful long ball. With the onrushing Robinson at his feet, Cisse attempted to lob the keeper, however the ball bounced wide of the near post.

Rovers were awarded another free kick in a dangerous position. Keith Andrews stepped up with a low driven strike, forcing Fulop again to pull of a great save. The half started to fizz out, but Rovers did manage to get the deserved lead before the break.

Another superb delivery from a Gamst corner found the 6’5′ head of Samba, who rocketed his header into the back of the net. 1-0 Rovers

No changes were made at the break, but whatever Keane said to his troops, they definately listened. Sunderland almost equalised immediately, Steed Malbranque placed a neat chip onto the head of Kenwyne Jones, whose header struck the cross bar.

Jones would not be denied moments later, after a blunder by Rovers goal keeper, Paul Robinson. Robbo attempted to clear a Sunderland corner, but could only make minimal contact with the ball. Jones, from 6 yards out, struck a neat scissor kick into the top corner of the net. 1-1.

THe error could not have come at a worse time for Robinson, with the England Goal Keeper coach sitting in the stands.

Robinson made amends minutes later. A dangerous Keiron Richardson swerving free kick, leaving Robbo with seconds to react, was parried over the crossbar. Sunderland continued to push on, and it appeared Rovers simply could not match them.

In the 70th minute, Malbranque placed a delightful throughball for Cisse, who out muscled Zurab, and chipped Robinson, dribbling into the back of the net. 2-1 Sunderland.

Blackburn’s chances in the second half were minimal, with the best chance falling to the most unlikely of players in the dying minutes, Aaron Mokoena. After a Villanueva corner, Zurabs header found the outstreched leg of Roque Santa Cruz, who flicked the ball goal wards. Desperate defending prevent Roque finding the net, with the ball bouncing up on the penalty spot. Mokoena unleashed a furios volley, but the Sunderland defence put their bodies on the line. No luck for Rovers

Full Time

Blackburn 1- Sunderland 2

Player Ratings

Paul Robinson 6.5
The best of both worlds from Robbo. A pair of clean saves, a blunder for the first goal, and part blame for the second. Zurab made the vital error, but Robbo did go to the ground much to early.

Zurab 5.5
Poor game from the Monk. Had a delightful game last week, but he was simply outmuscled by Cisse all game. Should of got on the score sheet

Chris Samba 8
Great effort from the big man

Andre Oijer 6
Frustrating game from the Dutch International. Looked out of place, looked confused, didnt seem happy.

Danny Simpson 6.5
A good game from the young kid. Couldnt do anything about the goals, chased down his men, and did push on well

Aaron Mokoena 7
Good game from the axe. Provided nothing in attack, but did fill the hole well

Morten Gamst Pedersen 8
Very good game from Gamst. Every single delivery of his was dangerous, did look a threat. Should not have been substitituted

Keith Andrews 7
Worked hard with little to show for it

Steven Warnock 7
Should of buried a goal early in the game. Chased hard, toiled, but no real impact in attack

Roque Santa Cruz 7.5
Worked hard and linked up well with the wide man. Really should of buried the header

Jason Roberts 6
He frustrated me last night. Went down too softly too many times. His big, he is strong, he is mean, but geez Jason, do you have to go down everytime you get touched, get up shaking your head with a grin, and continue ranting for 10 minutes? Use your strength, use your acceleration….

No real impact on the game

Carlos Villanueva
Looked dangerous just in behind the striker

Great passing display in the last 10 minutes.

Manager Rating
Poor. Very poor.

Ince is struggling in my eyes, and he is making the wrong decisions. We are loosing 2-1, why take of your most attacking player in the midfield, Gamst. He should of taken the Axe of, who played well, but we needed to push on for a result.

Cant Defend
24 Goals Conceded. Worst in the league.

Cant Score
14 goals scored. 4 at home. Second worst in the league


Not happy Ince……


14 Replies to “Rovers on the Slide….”

  • Another loss and i think it might be time to put a few dollars on a new manger for Christmas, Ince has done his best, but im just not sure if his best is good enough

  • if we dont get rid of ince we will get relegated we can do alot better with the players we have and if we dont get rid of ince we will start losing players like santa cruz samba warnock its not right i know he s know hughes but we can do alot more …….

  • i think ince is doing his best. But i dont think his best is premier league material yet. He did great luring in Danny Simpson, closing up on Grella and Carlos, but apart from that, the performances arent inspiring

  • Gotta say that yest was TERRIBLE!!!! A serious lack of quality on the pitch…..not feelin the “Ince Out” jibes though!! Who is gonna do any better with the players currently at his disposal?? No Nelsen, No Dunn, No Reid, No Grella, No Emerton, No Mcarthey etc….No one could cobble together a decent team at Rovers without those players……Dont get me wrong, Ince makes mistakes….Warnock in midield??? Going to 4-5-1 when the score is 1-1 at home?? but i dont think anyone else would have us cos we have no money!!! How did we honestly expect to fly this year when u consider our spending power to EVERYONE else in the premiership….Take Sunderland, a distinctly average team who beat us yest because their forward line cost 17m…..that was the real diference between them and our second eleven….having defended Ince i do think there are several players who are not up to the task on a consistent level…..Zurab, Simpson, Mokoena, Warnock (In Midfield), Roberts – ALL AVERAGE. gotta get some players back soon but no knee jerk reactions eh!!!

  • But Ince ins’t on a probation 1 year trial contract is he… like Hughes was, so we probably won’t be able to afford to sack and get a new manager in.. any thoughts??

  • Gary Megson???, Neil Warnock??, Ian Dowie?? come on boys this is the calibre of managers who would be happy to take us at the mo….Allardyce alluded to the fact that he turned us down this summer as oppose to the opposite….this was because he was told there was nothing to spend (Interview in Dubai – discussing the effect of the credit crunch on football)…..a realistic possibilty is Roberto Martinez (Swansea) this guy is really well thought of throughout football but i just dont think that sacking Ince will do us any favours……..yet

  • We’re overreacting a bit here lads. Ince doesnt need to go, the players need to step up and battle for him. Yes they were dreadful in the second half but it happens. Its how we react that is important.

  • Normally I agree with your ratings sas mate but I must say somet about a couple dude. Zurab was the best Rovers player on display, his reading of the game was excellent however he was left exposed fir the second goal. Villanueva was awful and kept falling over and slipping. Oh and Tugay came on and showed the rest of the midfield just how terrible they were,,,,

  • In addition to Mikey D’ comments, I didn’t think much of Andrews either. Regarding Ince, you have to question where he plays his personell. Someone mentioned that it would be hard to cobble together a team with the players we have out. I could cobble together a team if they played in their most suited position! Warnock = left back; Derbyshire = forward; Andrews = centre midfielder; Carlos = winger, and not where Ince was playing them. Maybe his tactics is to baffle the opposition as to his team positioning…I would not be surprised to Ooijer in goal, and Robinson right wing on Saturday…!

  • Would you like Hughes back? Because you’re absolutely welcome to him! He’s the worst manager I’ve seen at City in a long long time and there’s been some *****e ones as you know!

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