Rovers returned to winning ways with a comfortable 2-0 victory over Rotherham United at Ewood Park on Tuesday night.
Goals from Marcus Antonsson and Harry Chapman gave Rovers an easy victory over Rotherham, and in reality, it could’ve been a lot more.
After a yo-yo start to the season, it was now time for Rovers to face fellow relegated team from the Championship, Rotherham United – neither of which so far really living up to the heights set by the fans.
The lineup for Rovers was changed slightly from the game against Shrewsbury, with the much anticipated switch of Downing for Ward, and Marcus Antonsson coming in for Graham who also excited against the Shrews – with, controversially, Harry Chapman starting on the bench.
For the first time at home this season, Rovers put in an excellent display from the off with the midfield and attack showing the real hunger everyone wanted to see, both going forward and tracking back.
The first half was all Rovers, with attack after attack and striking the woodwork twice before the breakthrough goal.
A beautifully whipped Charlie Mulgrew corner found the Leeds United loanee Marcus Antonsson, who had made the run to the near post to head it home for the Blue and Whites and make it 1-0.
The half time break came, and if it wasn’t for the Rotherham ‘keeper Rodak, it could’ve – and would’ve – been more goals for Mowbray’s men.
The first proper chance of the second half fell to the visitors. Mattock hit a dipping volley from 25 yards out, and David Raya did brilliantly to preserve his clean sheet.
The Millers did look like they was getting back into the game, as a volley from Lee Frecklington was turned around the post by Raya. The resulting corner saw Rotherham put the ball in the back of the net, but the linesman raised his flag for offside.
This prompted Tony Mowbray to bring on “the Starman” Harry Chapman, in place of Bradley Dack. Chapman was involved within the space of 60 seconds. He skipped past two Rotherham players, and struck a near post shot, but Rodak got down well to the ball.
The game should have been over with 12 minutes to go, Antonsson raced through clear on goal, but blazed the ball straight over the bar into the Blackburn End.
Rovers got away with it when Mulgrew had to clear a header from Moore off the line with 10 minutes to go.
With 5 minutes of normal time left, Rovers killed the game off – and who else could it have been, but the star man?
Chapman took a short corner, and made a bursting run into the box. Rodak saves his initial effort, before the on-loan winger smashed the ball home – and wheeled away before performing a front-flip!
Antonsson and Whittingham had chances to make the scoreline even better, but both chances went just past the post.
This was the best we have played in so long and realistically should have netted at least 4 just in the first 45 minutes.
The Blue and Whites put in the best performance of the season so far and this result has given Rovers fans great hope of a smoother ride for the rest of the season. With the next 3 fixtures against the current bottom 3, (Gillingham, Oldham and Plymouth), we’re all counting on 9 points to get yet another four on the bounce and continue climbing the table and if we play like we did tonight, we certainly can.
Come on you Blues!
We will be discussing the Rotherham game, and the Shrewsbury game, on our 1875 Podcast. We’ll also discuss the upcoming Gillingham game and Bury in the Checkatrade Trophy game.
To send us questions, email us at email@example.com or tweet us on Twitter at @rovers_chat or use #1875Podcast.