Blackburn Rovers - VB Weekend Winners and Losers
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VB Weekend Winners and Losers

Happy Monday morning everybody!

This is quite an interesting period for us Rovers fans in that we seemed to have progressed from a side that ships goals for fun to a mean, lean defensive machine.

The flip side of that is that we don't score much either so we are now at a point where we are hard to beat but if we expand our wings and try and open up will we ship the goals again?

It is a conundrum... one that could have a load of answers but that is for another column, another day even.

My job is to pick the 3 winners and losers for this weekend's game, the 0-0 draw away at the KC stadium in Hull.


RYAN NELSEN - This actually seems to have escaped some fans attention but Ryan didn't put a foot wrong on Saturday.

He will always have his limitations, pace being the main one but he, like Richard Dunne of Aston Villa, is a player that knows what works for him and what doesn't and he sticks to it.

For the lack of pace and movement that he can occassionally be exposed to, he makes up for that with as good a display of positioning and strength as you will likely see from anyone.

No more so was this evident than Saturday. Every time Hull were going to whip in a cross, Ryan nipped into position to head away - he even used his body to get back possession when a through ball was played.

Super stuff again from a super captain.

JUNIOR HOILETT - A debut in the column for the Canadian.

Will we keep him? Will he leave to go abroad? Who knows - but what I do know is that he undeniably a cracking prospect.

Playing out on the left wing on Saturday, he was at times left to fight a lone battle but when released and given time to stretch his legs, he looked threatening.

Maybe he could benefit from a more central role in the team?

What is clear though is that belongs in the Rovers first team.

NIKOLA KALINIC - I like. I am really starting to like.

Now I am not blind, I can see he missed one glaring chance but I am getting to why he is here!

In twenty minutes on the pitch he created three chances for himself fighting off ther scraps he was given.

Di Santo made one chance in seventy!

His movement and his strength on the ball will create further chances in future games.

It is easy to take a potshot at the Croatian for his missbut look at the big picture - he IS getting there.


VINCE GRELLA - Very good for 35 minutes but then the usual happened.

And by usual I mean he got injured... can we afford to keep a man that pulls up every two games?

Can we keep the talent if we can't use the talent?

These are questions levelled at Steven Reid also but if we can all ask them about Steve when do we start asking them about Vince Grella (sorry Sas and Retro...)

KEITH ANDREWS - Dreadful stuff from the Irishman on Saturday.

Came on to replace the injured Vince and proceeded to romp around the pitch... doing pretty much nothing for an hour.

For all the energy in the world he didn't offer many tackles and he didn't really offer presence or creativity.

That is like me running round the house for an hour with a hoover not plugged in or a mop with no bucket...

It's just not good enough.

JASON ROBERTS - Normally when bought on as a sub, J-Rob looks like he wants to prove a point.

Against Hull, all he seemed bothered about was picking a fight or arguing witht the ref.

There are three good strikers at the club that cover their own areas of expertise... how is Jason going to get in the side more regularly by standing there, waving his arms around and moaning all the time?

Answers on a postcard please...
The Journalist

Writer: Mikey Delap Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Monday December 14 2009

Time: 10:10AM

Your Comments (oldest first)

Change to most recent first
Mate Grella was taken off as a precaution, he "felt" something wrong, so Sam hooked him before any further damage, he will be iced up and ready to go for the weekend.....Disagree with Kalinic, we now have 3 strikers, J rob, Kalinic and Di Santo, who cant score in a brothel....
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14/12/2009 10:28:00

As much as I like Di Santo we need to let him go back to Chelski and get in someone new. SA has said he won't buy a new one unless we lose one and I dont see J-Rob and Benni going. Kalinic I think will come through in the end but we need to get in someone who can hit the ground running, who doesnt need 4 months to adapt. Problem is on our shoestring budget and being "an unfashionable club"....who can we bring in?!
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14/12/2009 11:06:00

All good points guys but I stand by what i say, I can see the effect Kalinic can have. Grella may get iced up but how long before this happens again?
Mikey Delap
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14/12/2009 11:10:00

Good to hear that about Grella Sas... look, despite a poor run the last two years, he had Emos pre-knee injury record. He will be ok. ANd i couldn't agree with you more about Kalinic. He will be fantastic. In january we do not need to but another striker
Report Abuse
14/12/2009 11:17:00

Right, who created Kalinic's chance, which was the best of the game? You lot are ungrateful.
Report Abuse
14/12/2009 12:38:00

You know, if he was as worthless and as poor as you think, why would you manager play him over more established names?
Report Abuse
14/12/2009 12:39:00

Alright touchy. No-one has said he is "worthless and poor". We are merely pointing out the obvious that he isn't taking his chances. At a side like blackburn rovers where we dont have 30+ million pounds worth of strikers in the squad what few we do have we need them to put some away on occasion in order to ensure our premiership status. Jesus there is being defensive and being a bit OTT daniel. Also I commented to not take him on for the rest of the season because he is a loan striker and we dont need to find a suitor to take him off our hands and he would just go back to Chelsea and develop into what will surely be a top goalscorer there. No people in their right mind would buy Roberts and McCarthy and we need to free up one wage to create space for another. Take it with a pinch of salt mate.
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14/12/2009 14:58:00

Mikey - I totally agree with your winners and losers this weekend. Ryan is on fire - it'd be great to see him keep up this form throughout the season. JT_Daniel - a striker is judged by his goal totals - at the moment his game play time to goal ratio is worse than Bobby Zamora's - how does that make you feel? Also, I happen to think that he is a talented kid with a great touch and skill - but you guys should be the grateful ones, as we're the outfit giving him the experience he's lacking so badly at Chelski - also, when he returns to you he still won't get a game, so you should be thanking us for paying his wages!
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14/12/2009 17:48:00

flipping heck JT calm down! He is getting an equal measure of pros and cons at the mo Di Santo... we are not calling him worthless!! calm down and chillax a bit!!!
Mikey Delap
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14/12/2009 23:02:00

JT must be related to him......he is a striker, and a striker who cant finish is not a good striker! If he was an attacking midfielder, a winger, anywhere else, and wasnt getting goals, then thats fine, he is getting 2 clear chances a game, and cant bury expect us to rave about how good he is?
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15/12/2009 04:52:00

sasman, I can assure you I'm not related to him. :-) And Freidel1 I assure you, we ARE grateful for giving him valuable experience. You lot are'nt doing too badly at the moment and Di Santo is'nt exactly Andriy Voronin on the pitch, so all I'm asking is give the lad a bit more time. Hopefully, the loan deal should be extended and he should bang in lots of goals for you lot. Sorry for the tone of my previous comments, though, I was upset at the thought of devaluing our youngster. :-)
Report Abuse
15/12/2009 12:39:00


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