ESPN Soccernet - Correspondents - Blackburn Rovers
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Blackburn Rovers
Posted by Marcus Tattersall on 04/04/2012

Rovers were eventually undone at Ewood on Monday night by two strikes of the cane from a United side who look destined to claim their 20th title. In the process, Rovers were pushed into the deep end and submerged with a frantic fight for survival which lying ahead.

For 80 minutes Rovers held the visitors and if it wasn't for the brilliance of De Gea we may have been looking at a different league table this morning. Rovers battled and pressurised United, however they rarely moved out of first gear and the sloth like Scholes was able to dictate the pace of the game to suit his team’s needs. Sadly for Rovers, it was the substitution of the flame haired veteran which changed the course of the game and gave United the one commodity that they had been lacking throughout which was pace.

If it was plainly obvious to Fergie and 27,000 other people in the ground that substitutions may change the course of the game, but why didn't Steve Kean pick up on the vibes? I can understand the Rovers boss wanting to field an unchanged side when victorious as was the case against Wolves and Sunderland but Rovers were desperate for a change of direction after United scored. You can hardly blame the supporters for thinking there may be other reasons why substitutions are not taking place given the nonsense that has gone on this season regarding players' contracts. This is probably a long way off the mark but unfortunately paranoia and suspicion have characterised this season and the blame totally lies with the authorities at the club.

Two weeks ago the Rovers red rose appeared to be blooming again. Steve Kean was being lauded by the London media as the man who had proven the fans wrong and was in some circles being put forward as a candidate for manager of the year! I said at the time that this was short sighted and that there would be more twists and turns to come in the relegation battle and last weekend proved this to be the case with Wigan, QPR and Bolton all winning. I believe Rovers will somehow grab a further 8 points from the remaining games to come and finish on 36 points. Whether this will prove to be sufficient remains to be seen.

The FA Cup Final quite rightly has the day to itself on Saturday 5th May but Rovers' own Cup Final will take place at Ewood a day later against Wigan. Nothing other than a win will do, particularly with Wigan facing relegation fodder Wolves on the final day of the season and Rovers having to endure a trip to Stamford Bridge on the same day. Let's just hope the job is done before facing Chelsea on May 13th.

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