Blackburn Rovers manager Tony Mowbray has heaped praise on the contribution of Elliott Bennett, after the 30-year-old’s emergence as a key utility player in an injury-hit season on the club’s return to the Championship.
Injuries in the back line, in particular, have seen Bennett, naturally a midfielder, play in both a right back and left back position across the course of the season, while also filling in across the midfield and taking the captain’s armband in the absence of regular skipper Charlie Mulgrew through injury.
Speaking to Rovers’ official club website about the impact of Bennett on the side, Mowbray said: “Elliott Bennett is filling in, right back isn’t his preferred position.
“At the moment he’s filling in anywhere and everywhere for us and doing a fantastic job.”
Speaking about Bennett’s abilities in those various positions, the Rovers boss added:
“He fulfils the expectation I have of him every week. I think he does an amazing job wherever I ask him to play.
“He might not be the trickiest winger, he might not be the strongest tackling full back with the best understanding of the position, but he is a very thoughtful footballer.”
Bennett has made 34 appearances in all competitions for the Ewood Park side this season, scoring his first goal of the campaign in Saturday’s 4-2 defeat to Sheffield Wednesday at Hillsborough on Saturday.
Despite its name, there was little surprise when Rovers “Unsung Hero” award at the end of last season’s promotion-winning campaign was handed to Elliott Bennett, and the hugely popular player in Rovers circles has continued to do whatever is asked of him tirelessly this season.
The international break has come at a good time for Rovers as they look to get something resembling a fully fit squad again, but until they do, Mowbray knows he will be able to call on his vice-captain to do whatever is required of him.