VB Weekend Winners and Losers
A different type of 1-1 draw took place at Ewood Park on Saturday, one that left that little flat feeling in your stomach.
The more demoralising aspect from a Rovers point of view this season is that a total of 5 points have been lost from winning positions in the first 5 games.
That is costly and very unlike a Sam Allardyce team.
But who did themselves proud and who covered himself in less than a shower of glory?
CHRIS SAMBA - This could get boring. The best defender on the pitch and to add to that this week the source of the aerial threat that produced a goal.
The goal was contentious to say the least but by that point their goalkeeper Schwarzer shouldn't have been on the pitch by then anyway.
I am not sure that the Congolese man knew a great deal about the goal, a bounce off the top of the head is hardly the most gracious of finishes.
But it was reward for the usual colossal effort down the end of the pitch where he normally conducts his business.
Alongside Nemanja Vidic and (amazingly
Titus Bramble, there hasn't been a better centre back in the Premier League this season.
EL HADJI DIOUF - Ignoring the shenanigans for the Rovers goal, if the season ended right now it would be a straight fight between the aforementioned Samba and Diouf snr. for the player of the season award.
On Saturday he produced another industrious performance on either flank with some silky movement to boot.
If he had played like this for his whole Rovers career then there would be no qualms about his output that has often centred around clowning around and starting arguments.
The more of the El Hadji Diouf that we have seen since August that is on show the more he will slowly wipe away the memories of his less productive days... even if it is too late in the eyes of the casual fan to forget the spitting, shouting and diving.
BENJANI - Only on the pitch for 25 minutes and was bought on in a strange swap with Nikola Kalinic but produced enough in that short space of time to suggest this could be a good signing.
Whilst not offering anything like an effort on goal due to the level of service in the closing moments of the game, he did show enough work rate, skill on the ball and awareness to make himself a worthy presence.
It's going to be a log haul but the signs are promising.
VINCE GRELLA - Nothing to do with his defensive effort as by and large the man did an effective job in one of the two holding roles.
My main gripe is constant attempt to try passes that above and beyond his creative ability level.
The Aussie contingent may be able to explain if he has ever been capable of the long pass but too many of his efforts went noticeably astray.
Someone should maybe take him aside and explain to him that he is an effective, strong and firm presence in that midfield but he seems incapable of what the casual fans call the 'Hollywood Ball'.
MICHEL SALGADO - It's not his fault he is 35 but maybe these were the games where the faster and more versatile Pascal Chimbonda should have played.
Was skinned by Fulham left back Salcido three or fours times and was perhaps 'risked' when it wasn't required after that thigh strain last week.
BIG SAM ALLARDYCE - I am not sure the Real Madrid scouts would have liked that?
I am not even sure they would have celebrated the goal that we scored again.
For all the posturing and self congratulating which Big Sam lavishes upon himself, he still shows two main signs of weakness.
Big Sam is a much better manager than many people give him credit for but until he shows he has a little more tactical flexibility and assembles a playing staff that gives us more than one option no-one will take that praise even close to seriously.
If he was as honest about his short comings as he is about his skills then we could be a much better side.
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