The busy festive period is really in full swing and blues begin a hectic Christmas schedule with a very tricky trip to Blackburn this Saturday looking to bounce back from a disappointing home defeat to Bristol city in which blues’ unbeaten home run came crashing to an end.
This is a chance for blues to really show what they are made of when they face back to back away games against teams with very good home form. Blackburn are one of the surprise packages this season having been promoted last season from league 1. Blackburn come into this fixture with a very good home record of 5 wins, 5 draws and 1 defeat so this game is going to be anything but easy.
Ewood Park hasn’t exactly been a happy hunting ground for blues with their last 3 results being a 1-1 draw, 2-0 defeat and a 1-0 defeat. However, blues have a very respectable away record this season with Garry Monks men accumulating 11 points on the road this season.
The squad will have the full week to recover and re focus and should be boosted by the return of Jota for the weekends game. The Spaniard has missed the last 4 games with a groin injury and his presence should be a huge lift for the team and could provide Garry Monk with a good headache ahead of the game.
The Bristol game was a little bit of a shock to the system and some of the more consistent performers were missing at the weekend with the midfield duo of Maikel Keiftenbeld and Gary Gardner not having the most memorable of game with the pair struggling to control the midfield. Other key players really went missing last Saturday as blues’ forward two struggled to open Bristol up and for large parts were very isolated.
As stated in previous articles, as good as blues are in what they do sometimes they lack a plan B, and this was evident in the Bristol game when looking to change the game the only tactical change that was made was to bring on Wes Harding. With Jota’s return would bring about the ability to have Jota on that right as an inside playmaker but also have the ability to push Jota more centrally and bring Mahoney on if needed also to play as a 3 with Maghoma on the left.
Blues will also be monitoring the fitness of Michael Morrison who was taken off just after the hour mark but will have Mark Roberts ready to step in if needed.
Overall, I think that blues need to be realistic and personally I would be happy with a point from this game and move on to Wigan next week who I believe we have more chance of picking up three points against.
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