Tony Mowbray has suggested that Blackburn Rovers have been handed a tough start but claims he is not overawed by the challenge ahead.
Instead, he believes the tough fixtures offer him a good chance to assess his squad and their chances of success this season, and whether they can build on last season’s 15th-placed finish.
Rovers lost their first two league games against Charlton and Fulham, and after the weekend’s game against Middlesbrough, they play Hull away before welcoming Cardiff.
Speaking in the Boro pre-match press conference, Mowbray said: “Our opening games are seeing us come up against teams with ambitions to be at the top end of the table this season.
“It’s tough run of games but we’re looking forward to them because it gives us an idea of where we should expect to be.”
Boro are difficult opponents on paper, and will be determined to pick up their first win in the Championship. Another loss for Rovers would cement their place at the foot of the division and cause some concern about their chances of survival.
Mowbray took positives out of the two defeats so far but will be eager to put some points on the board to ensure confidence doesn’t drop, and will hope for a reaction against Middlesbrough.
Blackburn have to start picking up points soon otherwise they will face an uphill struggle to finish where they want to this season, and numerous defeats could create discontent.
The likes of Bradley Dack likely hold ambitions greater than what Rovers can offer and if they struggle this season he will probably want a move away, and the club simply can’t afford to lose its best players.
Boro are tough opposition, particularly as they are in search of their first win, so the players will need to be at the top of their game to pick up the win, which could be tricky.