Even though a defeat by Montenegro in their final game meant that it was Wales, as well as England, who missed out in their qualifying group for the under 19 Euros, it was still a good October international break all told and now attention switches to club football for a month as City try to hit the levels they reached before things went off the rails somewhat against Middlesbrough and Watford.
City travel to Blackburn tomorrow having already been heavily beaten there this season in the League Cup and since what may have been their best performance of their Championship winning 12/13 season when they put on a show for the Sky cameras with a 4-1 win at Ewood Park, their record at the ground is a poor one.
Blackburn have been scoring goals a plenty this season, but they’ve been letting in a lot as well, hence their position of seventeenth. Rovers are averaging just short of two goals a game conceded so far and, before their toothless showings in their last two matches, you would have backed City to score once or twice up there tomorrow – we were told City were very tired against Watford in the last match before the break, so the question is have they recharged their batteries enough in the last fortnight to see a much needed improvement tomorrow?
In the meantime, here’s seven Blackburn related questions – I’ll post the answers on here on Sunday.
60s. It’s not true to say that this forward’s sixteen year career consisted of him driving up and down a fourteen mile stretch of the A666, but you could forgive anyone who thought like that because he only ever represented a couple of clubs situated on that road. I remember him more for his time with the club that isn’t Blackburn Rovers (he played more than twice as many games for them and scored more than twice as many goals for the team he joined from his hometown club). Nevertheless, he scored fifty times in just over one hundred and twenty league games in his two spells with Blackburn – who am I describing?
70s. A forward who only returned to his native north east right at the end of his career, his football career got off to an unusual start as he was taken on by Everton as a teenager only to ask to be released by them four days later. Returning home to become a welder, his goalscoring record for a pub team was so good that Football League clubs were noticing his exploits. In particular, yellow/amber shirted Southeners who were soon picking him in their first team. He helped achieve a promotion and scored a famous goal for the club before a move further south to wear red. The goals really dried up for him at this club (just the one in nearly thirty matches) though, so he must have been grateful to Blackburn for coming to his rescue even if it meant him dropping down a division. Although hardly a prolific scorer, he did better at Ewood Park during his three years there and was transferred to another club wearing blue and white only to struggle again to score. His career was now in its final stages and after a loan to a northern location that’s male population was responsible for determining the 2019 election if you believed a centre right think tank, he ended his career back in the county of his birth representing a team which has recently been relegated from the Football League, again. Can you name the player concerned?
80s. Possible warning of Viking/French invasion?
90s. Cry for tag team featuring full back maybe. (4,5)
00s. Born in a city that’s most famous team once faced us in the Cup Winners Cup, he won ninety two caps for his country and spent a good portion of his career playing in the UK. Blackburn were one of five British teams he played for and his sixty odd league appearances for them were more than he made at any of the other four – he also scored his one and only goal in this country while at Blackburn. Can you name him?
10s. He’s currently on a six year Bankruptcy Undertaking Order, spent the latter years of his career representing the Gates of Shropshire, the Fierce Dragon, the Saddlers and Icelandic blues. He also represented Blackburn against City during this decade and made his first start as a senior football in a game played in Galatasaray. Name him.
20s. Midfielder who might be The Man Who represents Britpop band on Scottish island?
60s. John Byrom made his debut for Blackburn in 1961 and five years later was transferred to Bolton for £25,000. Bolton were a team in decline at that time and Byrom was unable to stop a slide which saw them drop from Division One to Division Three, but he still managed to score goals at a rate of better than one in three for them over a decade, before he returned to Blackburn for a season before his retirement in 1977.
70s.Barry Endean signed for Watford after having given up on his first attempt to make a career in professional football and was a regular in their team which were promoted in 1969. The following year, Endean scored the goal which beat Liverpool at Vicarage Road in the FA Cup as Watford made it to the Semi Finals, but Endean was soon sold on to Charlton and then Blackburn. A transfer to Huddersfield followed, but he only played a dozen games for them and, following a loan spell at Workington (“Workington man” was a phrase designed to represent a traditional Labour supporting male who voted for Brexit and opted for the Conservatives in the General Election of 2019, thereby demolishing Labour’s “red wall” of Northern English seats), he finished his career at Hartlepool.
80s. Norman Bell.
90s. Gary Croft.
00s. Zurab Khizinashivili started his career in the city he was born in playing for Dinamo Tblisi (who beat City 3-1 on aggregate in the Cup Winners Cup in 75/76). He played ninety two times for and represented Dundee, Rangers, Blackburn, Newcastle and Reading during a career lasting nineteen years.
10s. Danny Guthrie played for Liverpool in Galatasaray and went on to play for Oakengates Athletic, Mitra Kukar, Walsall and Fram among others..
20s. Lewis Travis.