Meet the opposition | Blackburn Rovers

28th February
First team

As Swansea City prepare to head to Lancashire this weekend, we take a closer look at Blackburn Rovers.

What’s their story?

Blackburn Rovers

Blackburn made an instant return to the Championship in 2018, earning automatic promotion with a second-place finish in League One following their relegation in 2017.

They went on to consolidate in the second-tier last term, defying the predictions of many that they would make an instant return to League One.

They have been playing their football in the second and third tiers since their second stint in the Premier League came to an end in 2012.

Blackburn are one of only six sides to have won the Premier League, having beaten Manchester United to the title by a single point in the 1994-95 season.

They had previously won the top-flight title in 1912 and 1914, and have won six FA Cups and one League Cup.

How’s their form?

Blackburn Tosin Aderabioyo

Strong. Rovers have lost just one of their last nine games in the Championship. While that run may have included a few more draws than they would like, it has still been enough to put them firmly in the play-off mix and they are hitting form at the right time.

Their home form has been particularly good, losing just three league games at Ewood Park all season.

Who’s the boss?

Blackburn Tony Mowbray

Tony Mowbray. One of the most experienced bosses in the division, Mowbray has been in management for 15 years.

Having been appointed Blackburn manager in February 2017 following the departure of Owen Coyle, Mowbray was unable to steer the club away from relegation but won promotion back to the Championship at his first attempt.

Mowbray’s first permanent managerial post was at Hibernian, and he was named the Scottish Football Association’s manager of the year in his debut season at Easter Road.

Mowbray moved on to West Brom, where he won the second-tier title in 2008, but relegation followed a year later and he moved on to Celtic, who he had represented as a player.

After a difficult spell at Parkhead he then took charge at another old club, Middlesbrough, before a stint at Coventry which preceded his move to Blackburn.

Who are the key men?

Blackburn Adam Armstrong

Midfielder Bradley Dack has been a regular provider of goals for Rovers since his move from Gillingham in 2017, and that carried on into this season with 10 goals before he suffered a serious knee injury.

The loss of such a key player would have derailed many sides, but Adam Armstrong has stepped up to the plate in Dack’s absence.

He has 12 goals to his name this season, including a brace in the recent draw at Brentford.

Sam Gallagher and Danny Graham have also chipped in with goals, while Stewart Downing brings no shortage of experience although they are without the midfield talents of another injury victim in Lewis Holtby.

Tosin Adarabioyo has been a fine acquisition on loan from Manchester City at the back, while goalkeeper Christian Walton – on loan from Brighton – has filled the hole left by the departure of David Raya last summer.

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