It’s been something of a mixed season so far for Blackburn Rovers.
Both performances and results have been better at certain times than others, enough to keep Tony Mowbray’s side within touching distance of the play-off places, without ever really looking like breaking into the top six in the Championship table.
With promotion back to the Premier League seemingly a big target for the Lancashire-based club this season, it is likely that Mowbray will be looking to make some alterations to his side as we approach the halfway stage of the campaign, in a bid to ensure that return to the top-flight does indeed have a chance of happening.
Here, we take a look at two changes we might see at Blackburn next month, as they look to boost their promotion hopes for this season.
A new centre back
Tony Mowbray has previously claimed that Blackburn Rovers are unlikely to dip into the transfer market in January for any new signings unless his club sells any players, but you feel his hand may now be forced in the centre of defence.
As things stand, Blackburn have just one fit and available senior centre back in the shape of Darragh Lenihan, with both Derrick Williams and Scott Wharton facing several months on the sidelines due to injury, while Daniel Ayala misses out on Saturday afternoon’s clash with Stoke, with the full extent of his injury concern still to be confirmed.
Given that both Lenihan himself also have something of a history of injuries themselves, you do feel as though Rovers may have to head into the market in January in order to make sure they do not risk leaving themselves short on numbers at the heart of their defence, even if it is just on a loan deal until those who are currently stuck in the treatment are back to full fitness.
The return of the Dack (and others)
Given the injuries they have had to cope with up until now, it could be argued that Blackburn have yet to name their strongest starting lineup this season.
Long-term injury absentees Bradley Dack and Lewis Travis would surely have been regulars this season had they been fit, while Mowbray himself has admitted that Ben Brereton’s absence from the last four games due to injury has been a blow to his side, with the attacker having played his best football for the club while ever present in the Rovers starting XI prior to that injury.
With that trio among a number of injury hit players the club are hoping to have available again come the turn of the year, you would imagine that – fitness permitting – there will be a bit more stability about Rovers’ lineup from game to the next, which could help give the side’s performances a welcome element of consistency that has been rather noticeable by its absence in recent weeks.