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MATCH REPORT: BLACKBURN 3 TOWN 2

2 May 2015

Town go down despite Murphy brace but Blues set for derby showdown in Play-Offs

Town set up a Play-Off clash with Norwich after a tense 90 minutes at Ewood Park ended in defeat but ultimately celebration for the 2000 travelling Blues fans. 

Daryl Murphy struck twice to take his tally to 27 League goals for the season but Blackburn took the points with goals from Jordan Rhodes, Craig Conway and Rudy Gestede.

It was Blues who were celebrating at the end though, with Derby’s defeat by Reading leaving Town in sixth and that derby showdown against the Canaries to come.

Mick McCarthy made one change to the side that beat Forest last weekend, Jay Tabb back from illness and replacing Stephen Hunt in midfield. Noel Hunt was named among the substitutes after recovering from a knee ligament injury well ahead of schedule. 

David Dunn skippered Blackburn on his last appearance for the club before retirement, former Blue Rhodes leading the home side’s attack.

Teddy Bishop forced a corner as Town started on the front foot and Murphy sent the 2000 strong Blue Army into dreamland inside two minutes, volleying in brilliantly from Tabb’s corner. 

Blackburn were stretched again a minute later, Markus Olsson clearing as Jonathan Parr looked to get on the end of Tabb’s cross. 

Gestede fired wide in Blackburn’s first effort at goal, the Rovers’ striker then seeing his header saved by Bart Bialkowski. 

Luke Chambers headed over from a Tabb corner as the home side looked vulnerable from set-pieces, Tommy Spur putting the ball behind for a corner after a Town counter attack with Murphy’s cross looking destined for Freddie Sears.

Sears then smashed a shot against the bar from an acute angle as Town threatened a second, Rhodes seeing a shot deflected wide at the other end but on 35 minutes the home side were level, Rhodes the inevitable scorer, heading in from Conway’s corner.

Rovers added a second soon after, Gestede flicked on Spurr’s throw and Conway did the rest at the far post to leave Town’s Play-Off hopes hanging in the balance at the break

Stephen Hunt replaced Tabb at half-time in Town’s first change, the midfielder soon in the action, curling in a free-kick at ‘keeper David Raya, then firing over from a good position.

It needed the reflexes of Bialkowski to keep out Rhodes at the far post, Bishop then showing a great touch to bring the ball under instant control on a difficult pitch but his shot sailed over the bar.

Paul Anderson replaced Parr as Mick McCarthy shuffled his pack, Bialkowski gathering well from Olsson’s cross. 

On the hour, Rovers added to their lead, Bishop’s clearance cannoned off a Town team-mate and Gestede toe-poked the ball past Bialkowski and into the net. 

Murphy mis-kicked from a good position as Blues looked to respond, Hunt’s cross falling behind Sears.

Murphy headed over from Tyrone Mings’ cross, then Adam Henley went down in the box under Mings’ challenge but no penalty.

Anderson was denied by the hands of Raya, Sears by the tackling of Henley as Blues looked for a way back into the game. Sears then lifting the ball over the bar after a corner broke to him a few yards out.

Dunn was given a standing ovation as he was replaced 15 minutes from time by Ben Marshall. 

Substitute Josh King hit a wonder strike against the underside of the bar as the game approached the closing stages, Sears then blasting over at the other end. 

Eight minutes from time, Town pulled a goal back from the penalty spot, Murphy sending Raya the wrong way after Bishop had been brought down to set up a tense finish to the game, if it could get any more tense but with news coming in from the iPro Stadium of Derby’s defeat, the celebrations began amongst the Blue Army.

Blackburn: Raya, Henley, Spurr, Lenihan, Olsson, Dunn (Marshall 76), Williamson, Evans, Conway, Rhodes, Gestede (King 72). Subs not used: Eastwood, O'Sullivan, Cairney, Nyambe, Brown. 
Town: Bialkowski, Chambers, Berra, Smith, Mings, Parr (Anderson 54), Skuse, Tabb (S.Hunt 46), Bishop (Bru 84), Murphy, Sears. Subs not used: Gerken, Fryers, Chaplow, N.Hunt. Booked: Skuse, Tabb.

















Town set up a Play-Off clash with Norwich after a tense 90 minutes at Ewood Park ended in defeat but ultimately celebration for the 2000 travelling Blues fans. 
Daryl Murphy struck twice to take his tally to 27 League goals for the season but Blackburn took the points with goals from Jordan Rhodes, Craig Conway and Rudy Gestede.
It was Blues who were celebrating at the end though, with Derby’s defeat by Reading leaving Town in sixth and that derby showdown against the Canaries to come.
Mick McCarthy made one change to the side that beat Forest last weekend, Jay Tabb back from illness and replacing Stephen Hunt in midfield. Noel Hunt was named among the substitutes after recovering from a knee ligament injury well ahead of schedule. 
David Dunn skippered Blackburn on his last appearance for the club before retirement, former Blue Rhodes leading the home side’s attack.
Teddy Bishop forced a corner as Town started on the front foot and Murphy sent the 2000 strong Blue Army into dreamland inside two minutes, volleying in brilliantly from Tabb’s corner. 
Blackburn were stretched again a minute later, Markus Olsson clearing as Jonathan Parr looked to get on the end of Tabb’s cross. 
Gestede fired wide in Blackburn’s first effort at goal, the Rovers’ striker then seeing his header saved by Bart Bialkowski. 
Luke Chambers headed over from a Tabb corner as the home side looked vulnerable from set-pieces, Tommy Spur putting the ball behind for a corner after a Town counter attack with Murphy’s cross looking destined for Freddie Sears.
Sears then smashed a shot against the bar from an acute angle as Town threatened a second, Rhodes seeing a shot deflected wide at the other end but on 35 minutes the home side were level, Rhodes the inevitable scorer, heading in from Conway’s corner.
Rovers added a second soon after, Gestede flicked on Spurr’s throw and Conway did the rest at the far post to leave Town’s Play-Off hopes hanging in the balance at the break
Stephen Hunt replaced Tabb at half-time in Town’s first change, the midfielder soon in the action, curling in a free-kick at ‘keeper David Raya, then firing over from a good position.
It needed the reflexes of Bialkowski to keep out Rhodes at the far post, Bishop then showing a great touch to bring the ball under instant control on a difficult pitch but his shot sailed over the bar.
Paul Anderson replaced Parr as Mick McCarthy shuffled his pack, Bialkowski gathering well from Olsson’s cross. 
On the hour, Rovers added to their lead, Bishop’s clearance cannoned off a Town team-mate and Gestede toe-poked the ball past Bialkowski and into the net. 
Murphy mis-kicked from a good position as Blues looked to respond, Hunt’s cross falling behind Sears.
Murphy headed over from Tyrone Mings’ cross, then Adam Henley went down in the box under Mings’ challenge but no penalty.
Anderson was denied by the hands of Raya, Sears by the tackling of Henley as Blues looked for a way back into the game. Sears then lifting the ball over the bar after a corner broke to him a few yards out.
Dunn was given a standing ovation as he was replaced 15 minutes from time by Ben Marshall. 
Substitute Josh King hit a wonder strike against the underside of the bar as the game approached the closing stages, Sears then blasting over at the other end. 
Eight minutes from time, Town pulled a goal back from the penalty spot, Murphy sending Raya the wrong way after Bishop had been brought down to set up a tense finish to the game, if it could get any more tense but with news coming in from the iPro Stadium of Derby’s defeat, the celebrations began amongst the Blue Army.
Blackburn: Raya, Henley, Spurr, Lenihan, Olsson, Dunn (Marshall 76), Williamson, Evans, Conway, Rhodes, Gestede (King 72). Subs not used: Eastwood, O'Sullivan, Cairney, Nyambe, Brown. 
Town: Bialkowski, Chambers, Berra, Smith, Mings, Parr (Anderson 54), Skuse, Tabb (S.Hunt 46), Bishop (Bru 84), Murphy, Sears. Subs not used: Gerken, Fryers, Chaplow, N.Hunt. Booked: Skuse, Tabb.



























 












 


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