Matchday, I'm a bit bored and haven't done anything like this in a while and have seemingly rubbed a few people the wrong way so figured I'd do a stat analysis on Blackburn's weaknesses.
Looking back at the last 3 teams to beat Blackburn at Ewood Park: Brighton, Reading and Leeds; I'm gonna go through the similarities in their performances and what weaknesses Blackburn showed consistently.
First thing is that all 3 teams favoured through balls. Clearly something Blackburn have a weakness with dealing with, we gotta take advantage of this and Washington starting could be key here. If the boy has the finishing boots he's had the last two games and we play the right balls forward for him, we'll see another goal or two from him today.
Their other weaknesses are avoiding offsides to playing a high line will play to our advantage and we can afford to do that with the pace we've got at the back in the form of Nedum, who's recovery work has been top notch recently.
Blackburn tend to give their opposition a bit of space outside of their defensive third so we have to be confident on the ball. Their first 11 barely changes so we should have done our research (As we did in our last game) and we should be able to identify weaknesses in their side, namely Gordon Greer, their 36 year old centre back who's played 18 games this season and does look to be a liability.
Their team is quite strong in the air, although only slightly more aerially sound than us, so again, this highlights the need for a low passing game. Luongo starting will help this given his choice to play very few aerial passes and with the pace of Wszolek and Washington as well as the workhorse attitude of Mackie, we can hurry and hassle their defenders and easily have the beating of them for pace.
No team has made fewer dribbles per game than Blackburn this season so tackling may not be as big as intercepting in this one and sticking to their players tightly will pressure them into giving it away. Similarly, no team has taken fewer shots per game than Blackburn, particularly at home where even we take more shots than them. We just have to take the chances we get.
We haven't beaten Blackburn in 12 matches since Gallen and Wardley got us a 2-0 win back in late '99, hopefully that'll change today.