The Rovers Wrap!!
Well we have just crossed the half way point, and its time to analyze each member of our first team squad, their impact this season, and a player rating!!!
The former England number one has held down the Blackburn Number 1 Jersey this season, and is proving to be pivotal in Sam Allardyce's game plan. His distribution and kicking game is second to none, however, is prone to the occasional....'Howler of the week' award....i.e- Chelsea Carling Cup Semi Final.... In saying that, he can use his experience when needed, pulling off a few vital saves throughout the season and holding his nerve in the shoot out v Chelsea in the Semi.....
By far, has to be the best cover keeper in the English Premier League. However, he has only been limited to cup action this season, not much of Browny unfortunately
Ryan Nelsen- The Admiral always leads by example, even pinching in with a couple of handy goals. Looks slightly off the pace these days, however his anticipation and awareness makes up for this. Would like him to be slightly more physical in defence, just like what we have seen in previous seasons
Christopher Samba- One of the most feared defenders in the English Premier League, seems to be having a quiet season. The big man does the job, dont get me wrong, but gives away way too many fouls, especially in attack, and has been caught out a couple of times on the counter. A big finish to the season will mean safety for Blackburn, and possibly a cup final
Pascal Chimbonda- The best of our defenders this season. Regardless what position he plays, Pascal has delivered. Strong and tough in defence, whilst quick and classy on the counter, Pascal immediately became a fan favourite in the derby encounter when he turned on the class, scoring the third for Rovers. A great Sam Allardyce signing, though we need more of this!
Gael Givet- As discussed before, not the Givet of last year. Still reads the game well, but looks unhappy playing out wide, preferring a more central role. However, just as Chimbonda is showing, sometimes, to play first team football, you must play anywhere, Givet needs to find that confidence that he showed us last year
Lars Jacobsen- Looked pretty shabby at first, however, is finding himself at home when called on in the right back role. Reads the game well, but will find it hard to crack into the first team squad when all fit. A good squad man
Michel Salgado- Shown signs of class whilst on the pitch, but must be the most defensive minded right midfielder the world has ever seen. Has lost his pace, but still plays a nice pass. $45k wages....not sure if we really are getting what we want from him
Martin Olsson- The young Swede is starting to poke his head back into the first team, with a few bench appearances and some good outings in the cup. Looks like he is back on track after a few atrocious performances last season
Phil Jones- The surprise packet of the season. Hasnt been called up for EPL duty as of yet, but looks to have poked himself ahead of a few more experienced players. Some top notch performances in the cup has ensured progress, might find himself a spot on the bench for the first team if he keeps it up
David Dunn- The local boy has turned it on for all to see, even so much that his name has been mentioned for a call up to the national team. However, unfortunately for Dunn, Blackburn and possibly England, injury struk, keeping the creative midfielder out of the game for a few weeks. Dunny is back on the pitch, and hopefully the calls, Dunny for England, are heard around Ewood once again
Steve Nzonzi- What a gem this guy has turned out to be. Solid in the holding role, good distribution, and can move quickly when required. Possibly needs to become more of an enforcer, but that will come with time
El Hadji Diouf- The controversial midfielder has put in performances ranging from sheer brilliance, to absolutely atrocious. A rash tackle in the cup did not help the cause. We know what he can do, just needs to do it much much more.....
Vince Grella- What can I say. Dissapointed. Another season plagued by injuries, the guy must have done something in Italy before coming over, abuse the Pope, attack Mr Totti, something.... When on the field, he is a true force, unfortunately, he spends three times the time off the field
Brett Emerton- Fresh of the surgeons table, Brett has returned, showing us exactly what we all know he can do. Strong prescence, out runs everybody on the paddock, as well as a wicked cross, Emerton will be vital in the run home for Rovers
Morten Gamst Pedersen- Who? Where is he know.....Once the first name on the team sheet, Gamst really has faded into the wilderness, with a cameo appearance here and there. A well taken goal last weekend and a few decent performances have brought him back into the first team lately, will this last, who knows...
Keith Andrews- The last man standing. Always fit, maybe thats because he does nothing, cant pass, cant tackle, though it looks like he can pull the trigger when needed. Should of sold him when Fulham came calling, but then again, who would be playing if we did?
David Hoillet- Who knows what this kid's best position is. I do know that he is the future of our club, and we must sign him up. The kid has pace, has finesse, just needs the confidence. Looks the goods, and hopefully proves to have the goods
Jason Roberts- Faded off the radar. Under Sam Allardyce, you would expect Roberts would be playing the target man role up front, however this is not to be. Hasnt had many opportunities this season, though did score a few vital goals against Portsmouth.
Franco Di Santo- The most appearances out of all our strikers, yet just the one goal. Thats the problem. Works his arse off all game, hunts down lost causes, creates plenty of chances for himself, runs amazing lines, though if he had converted even half the chances he has had, we would be sitting pretty in the top 10...
Nikola Kalinic- Starting to step up into the first team, and really must score soon. Hasnt had as many chances as Di Santo, but when they come, he must take them
Benni McCarthy- By far, our best, yet most underused striker. Creates for others, we actually look dangerous with him out on the pitch. Though he is not the big target man Sam wants, nor is he as fit as Sam would like. Whether he leaves or not, thats yet to be determined, if he does leave, im sure the Ewood Faithful will not be happy
Sam Allardyce- The Jury is out. Some like him, some dont. Personally, I thank him for keeping us up last season, however, the style of football we are playing is atrocious, if we played it well then at least he would have a case, but we arent, and we are only a few points from the drop zone. If we had been out of the Carling Cup much earlier, im sure the bells would be ringing for Sam, though the cup has acted as a cloud, covering the bigger issue.....
As for the rest of the squad, the likes of Doran, Zurab, Righters and Co, might just need to move on as they dont seem to be getting a look in.
What do you think, plenty of points to discuss, and as always, im sure there will be differing opinions!