Thursday, October 7
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Sep 25, 2021 at 3pm UK
BlackburnBlackburn Rovers
CardiffCardiff City
Gallagher (24'), Brereton Diaz (32', 45+1', 90' pen.), Dolan (53')
FT(HT: 3-0)
Morrison (58')
Flint (8'), Phillips (89')

Preview: Blackburn Rovers vs. Cardiff City - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: Blackburn Rovers vs. Cardiff City - prediction, team news, lineups:
Sports Mole previews Saturday's Championship clash between Blackburn Rovers and Cardiff City, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
Sports Mole

Blackburn Rovers will be looking to keep hold of their place in the playoffs when they welcome fellow promotion chasers Cardiff City to Ewood Park on Saturday afternoon.

The Blue and Whites have lost just one of their opening eight games and are sixth in the Championship, while Cardiff have slipped to 10th following back-to-back defeats.

Match preview

Rovers ended the 2020-21 campaign strongly and have carried that momentum into the 2021-22 campaign, having now lost just one of their last 11 league matches.

Tony Mowbray's men may have drawn three of their last four matches, but they occupy the final playoff spot and would happily accept that position come next May.

The most recent of those draws came away at Barnsley last weekend in a quiet contest that saw both sides fail to take their limited opportunities in front of goal.

At home, Blackburn have won five of their last seven in the league, which is as many as they managed in their previous 19 in the competition at Ewood Park.

Cardiff have been strong on their travels since Mick McCarthy arrived at the start of the year, although they did fall to a 1-0 loss to Coventry City in their last away game.

That was followed by a 1-0 defeat to Bournemouth on home soil last weekend, seeing the Bluebirds fall two points behind Blackburn in that final playoff spot.

McCarthy could have no complaints about the scoreline against the Cherries as his side were second best pretty much throughout at the Cardiff City Stadium.

City have now failed to score in back-to-back games, and they are without a first-half goal in the Championship so far this season.

Incredibly, eight of the Welsh side's goals this term - each scored after the 52nd minute - have come via headers, which is double that of any other side.

McCarthy will not care how his side find the net as long as they manage to do so this weekend, knowing that a win in Lancashire could well propel his side into the top six.

Blackburn Rovers Championship form:
  • W
  • L
  • D
  • D
  • W
  • D

Cardiff City Championship form:
  • W
  • L
  • L
  • W
  • L
  • L

Cardiff City form (all competitions):
  • D
  • W
  • L
  • W
  • L
  • L

Team News

Joe Rankin-Costello and Bradley Johnson have yet to feature for Blackburn this season and Mowbray is not willing to rush back either player.

There is more positive news in terms of striker Sam Gallagher, however, as he has been declared fit to feature after missing Rovers' last two games.

Gallagher's return could see Ben Brereton Diaz moved to the left-hand side, though Mowbray also has the option of bringing in Reda Khadra for a first start of the season.

As for Cardiff, McCarthy has had a full week to reflect on the defeat to Bournemouth and is expected to make a few changes.

Rubin Colwill starred in the recent away win at Nottingham Forest and is pushing for a recall, while Ryan Giles may be back available after recently being struck down by COVID-19.

Joel Bagan and Perry Ng are two others that will be eager to start after being overlooked last time out.

Blackburn Rovers possible starting lineup:
Kaminski; Nyambe, Lenihan, Ayala, Pickering; Buckley, Travis, Rothwell; Dolan, Gallagher, Brereton

Cardiff City possible starting lineup:
Phillips; Morrison, Flint, Nelson; Ng, Ralls, Vaulks, Pack, Bagan; Colwill, Moore

We say: Blackburn Rovers 1-1 Cardiff City

There has not been a great deal of difference between these sides in the early stages of the season in terms of results and history suggests that this game is certain to be tight.

Seven of the last 10 league meetings between Blackburn and Cardiff have ended as draws, including both matches last season.

That includes a run of five successive draws at Ewood Park, though unlike the last two of those we cannot see this one finishing goalless.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting over 1.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Over 1.5:data

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