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Opinion: Why EFL star should reject potential move to Blackburn Rovers amid injury update

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In an ideal world for Marcus Harness, he would probably be plying his trade regularly in the Championship now after recording seven goals and eight assists in the third tier last term.

Not only was he a regular contributor going forward for Danny Cowley’s men – but he also played in all 46 league games – a remarkable record that will make interested teams sit up and take notice with the need for reliability.

This reliability is especially important at a time when Covid cases continue to cause problems, with injuries on top of these positive tests causing the postponement of some games and that will no doubt prove to be detrimental for teams whose fixture lists start to get clogged with these rescheduled matches.

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Blackburn Rovers are currently the side most heavily linked with the 25-year-old ahead of a potential move this month, with Tony Mowbray potentially looking to add depth to his attacking department in Rovers’ quest to retain their spot in the top six.

The Lancashire side already seemed to have a settled starting lineup with John Buckley being nothing short of a revelation this season in an advanced midfield position and the in-form Ben Brereton Diaz and Reda Khadra starting up top.

Tyrhys Dolan and Sam Gallagher, the latter of whom recently signed a contract extension at Ewood Park, have also given manager Mowbray a real threat from the bench having previously formed a formidable front three with Chilean Brereton Diaz before the increased involvement of Brighton loanee Khadra.

But another one of their most valuable assets is still to return in Bradley Dack, who is recovering well from his ACL injury and has even been involved in contact training ahead of his return, giving Rovers another option in the attacking midfield position.

He may have a big challenge on his hands in replacing Buckley though, because the latter’s performances have been sensational having registered six assists in 24 league appearances this term.

As a 22-year-old, he will only get better and this may be a concern to Harness if he’s currently weighing up the merits of travelling to Lancashire to link up with the second-tier side.

Not only that, but Mowbray clearly rates Dack very highly as well, publicly labelling him as the club’s ‘best player’ – and with his return not too far away – the Pompey man would probably find his first-team chances very limited.

Many people would argue that he may be able to fill in at right wing-back. But after scoring nine League One goals already for Pompey this season, Blackburn’s boss may want to use him in a more attacking position and in their current formation, there’s no real opportunity to play in an advanced winger role. And Ryan Nyambe seems to be the nailed-on first-choice option on the right-hand side anyway.

Instead, Rovers would probably benefit more from promoting a younger player to provide depth or bring in a loanee with a more defensive midfield player in Leighton Clarkson freeing up a space after his premature departure.

For Harness, he should bide his time with regular pitch time needing to be the priority. He has a chance to earn that move up to the Championship with his current side as they sit just outside the play-off zone.

The Irishman may deserve a transfer to the second tier already, with his own manager even previously admitting that he was expecting teams from the division to submit bids for his services, but he needs to ensure he can win regular minutes.

With the quality they have and in their current position as high-flyers and perhaps a slight reluctance to rock the boat with too many additions, Blackburn can’t offer him that.

It’s a real shame because he’s exactly the sort of player Rovers should be going for with his attacking firepower, potential and hunger to do well. But for the player in question, it just doesn’t seem like a logical step at this stage.

Things can change at any moment though, so he should revisit this possible switch in the summer.


A 21-year-old Reading FC fan and writer who graduated from the University for the Creative Arts in the summer with a degree in Journalism and Media Production. Other topics written about include politics, mental health and education.

ScoopDragon Football News Network

Article title: Opinion: Why EFL star should reject potential move to Blackburn Rovers amid injury update

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