Championship Preview: Blackburn manager Steve Kean faces Leicester test
The Championship is known for exciting, end-to-end and unpredictable football. It certainly lived up to this reputation in the first week of the new campaign which was ram packed with goals and upsets.
As sides look to make up for opening week defeats or consolidate good starts, the Championship fixture list again throws up some mouth-watering matches.
We look ahead to the standout games and players to watch this week……
MATCH OF THE WEEK…
Blackburn Rovers v Leicester City
Two promotion contenders who have made solid starts to the season after making several additions to their squads.
Rovers captured Danny Murphy to control the midfield and provide a solid base for their more expansive players to express themselves. Moreover Nuno Gomes offers a wealth of experience internationally and the enigmatic Colin Kazim-Richards has already netted twice in two games.
Steve Kean will be desperate to secure a win not only in the long run to secure promotion back to the promised land but also in the short term to silence his critics.
Speculation has been rife that without wins, Kean could well be given his marching orders inside the first five games.
Rovers followed up a 1-1 draw at Ipswich Town with a 1-0 home win against Hull City, but this game will show provide a better indication of whether they can be considered for promotion.
The Foxes have added Jamie Vardy to their ranks, a hard-working striker who scored at a prolific rate in non-league football, and have also acquired the Premier League experience of Ritchie De Laet and Zak Whitbread.
After finishing 9th last season, Nigel Pearson will be determined to propel his hugely talented squad into the Premier League.
A game that will be full of quality and with the quantity of natural goalscorers on show, should provide goals.
OTHER NOTABLE MATCHES…
Bolton v Nottingham Forest: Forest have invested heavily in their squad, while Owen Coyle has plenty of Premier League quality at his disposal.
Blackpool v Ipswich Town: Neither has spent millions in the transfer market but two hard-working teams who have started the season brightly.
Bristol City v Cardiff City
The Severnside derby is renowned for the fierce rivalry and hostility between the two teams and two sets of fans. Players taunting the crowd, red cards, and managers sent to the stands are normal occurrences.
In a part of the world where there are not too many big rivalries, this game means that little bit extra to both sets of fans.
Bristol City come into the game off the back of a fantastic midweek performance against Crystal Palace, whilst Cardiff drew at Brighton. In a fixture that the Bluebirds in recent times have come out on top the Robins will be desperate to avenge past defeats.
Expect action, passion and taunting about the new colour of Cardiff’s home shirt.
PLAYER TO WATCH…
Son of former England captain Paul Ince, Tom impressed in his first season at Bloomfield Road, scoring eight times. Blessed with great skill, vision and trickery, he will be a player many Championship defenders will fear.
Off the back of a double against Millwall in the first game of Blackpool’s season and a solid performance against Leeds in midweek, he will be full of confidence heading into Saturday’s home game against Ipswich Town.
Both teams have started the season well. Therefore Ince may well be the difference between the two sides.Tagged in: championship, football
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