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Season Preview: Blackburn Rovers

Season Preview: Blackburn Rovers
The latest instalment of the Vital Watford season preview is here and today we turn our attentions to Blackburn Rovers...

Rovers can be considered something of an unknown quantity. Despite being in this division last term and having Gary Bowyer at the helm for at least part of the season, the Lancastrian outfit are that unpredictable that it is impossible to guess what this term holds for them.

Some things are however pretty certain: it will be funny to not be a Blackburn fan, it will be extremely depressing to be a Blackburn fan and Bowyer will not finish the season as manager, which is a shame really, as he has done well when handed the reins temporarily.

There has been a very noticeable change in the club`s recruitment policy this summer; whilst last term Steve Kean brought in veteran Portuguese icon Nuno Gomes and £8m striker Jordan Rhodes as well as a number of young Portuguese players who appeared - from the outside at least - to have been foisted on the hapless Scot, this summer has been about recruiting from the lower leagues on free transfers.

Quite what will happen at Ewood Park over the next 12 months remains anyone`s guess...

In: Chris Taylor (Millwall, free), Alan Judge (Notts County, free), Simon Eastwood (Portsmouth, free), Devarn Green (Burton Albion, undisc.), DJ Campbell (QPR, free), Matt Kilgallon (Sunderland, free), Alex Marrow (Crystal Palace, free) & Todd Kane (Chelsea, loan)

Out: Nuno Henrique (Arouca, loan), David Goodwillie (Dundee United, loan), Anton Forrester (Bury, loan), Edinho Junior (Whitehawk, loan), Micah Evans, Osayaymen Osawe, Christopher Dilo, Peter Wylie, Jamie Maclaren, Rhys Hands, Ryan Humphrey, Danny Laverty (all released), Nuno Gomes (mutual consent), Danny Murphy (mutual consent) & Martin Olsson (Norwich City, undisc.).

Key Player - Jordan Rhodes: The £8m goal machine certainly delivered the goals expected of him last term following his move from Huddersfield Town - 27 from 42 Championship starts, in fact.

A full Scotland international, the 23 year-old forward made his name with the Terriers before moving to Ewood Park, having scored 73 league goals in just 110 appearances for the Yorkshire outfit.

Pacey and direct, the 6`2" started his career at Ipswich Town before taking in loan spells with Oxford United, Rochdale and Brentford.

Predictions:

Tom: 18th
Chris: 13th

"Blackburn really will be a mystery team this season with regards to predicting how they will do. That is mainly because nobody knows what is going to be happening with the manager.

"Gary Bowyer saw Blackburn to a decent end to last season and ended up getting the job but if they start badly this year will the same boardroom problems resurface. The other major problem is that the fans feel so disconnected from the club. It really is a tough situation.

"So far this summer they gone for more sensible transfers with young players like Alan Judge and Todd Kane with a bit of experience in the form of Matt Kilgallon. And with Jordan Rhodes in the team they are more than capable of pulling out a victory against anybody."

Writer:Tom Bodell
Date:Tuesday July 23 2013
Time: 9:30AM

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3 Spurs 22 13 7 2 46 29
4 Liverpool 22 13 6 3 45 24
5 Man City 22 13 4 5 43 15
6 Man Utd 22 11 8 3 41 12
7 Everton 22 10 6 6 36 10
8 WBA 22 9 5 8 32 2
9 Stoke 22 7 7 8 28 -6
10 West Ham 22 8 4 10 28 -7
11 Southampton 22 7 6 9 27 -4
12 AFC Bournemouth 22 7 5 10 26 -7
13 Burnley 22 8 2 12 26 -9
14 Watford 22 6 6 10 24 -13
15 Leicester City 22 5 6 11 21 -13
16 Middlesbrough 22 4 8 10 20 -7
17 Swansea 22 5 3 14 18 -25
18 Crystal Palace 22 4 4 14 16 -11
19 Hull City 22 4 4 14 16 -27
20 Sunderland 22 4 3 15 15 -22
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