The Sky Bet Championship weekend concludes on Sunday afternoon when two sides who would have had their sights on promotion at the start of the season meet at Carrow Road when Norwich City host Blackburn Rovers.
You would have to say the season isn’t really going to plan for either of these two teams and you sense that this is a big match for both of them as they look to get themselves up the table where they want to be.
Where to watch
The match will be shown live and in full on the Sky Sports Main Event and Sky Sports Football channels with the build-up in Norfolk beginning at 11.30am ahead of the 12 noon kick off.
The season actually started well for Norwich City with four wins from their opening six matches and at the time it looked like David Wagner had put a squad together with which the Canaries could launch a promotion challenge after a disappointing campaign last term. Since then though they have won just one of their last eight games and have dropped down the table like a stone. As ever, the Championship table is bunched between sixth and 20th but Norwich won’t want to many ahead of them to get away from them.
Injuries certainly haven’t helped Norwich but this run of form is disappointing even without that, however it was revealed this week that they are in a bit of a sorry state off the pitch which isn’t helping with things on it and you wonder if they have it within them to turn their form around. If they are going to do it then they need to defend better than they have been. They have conceded eight in their last three matches and have already shipped four at Southampton and six at Plymouth this term.
The Ewood Park outfit head into this clash off the back of a disappointment of exiting the Carabao Cup in midweek, although in their defence they made changes against a Chelsea side who were on it on the night and came up short. There is no real shame in that but they will want to get back to winning ways here, especially having seen a three match winning run snapped when they were surprisingly beaten at home by Swansea last weekend.
Rovers do have three wins in seven away from home in the Championship this term and only went down 4-3 at Ipswich earlier in the campaign, which shows that they can give the better teams in the league a game. This season is shaping up like the last one for Blackburn where they are not interested in draws. They went deep into the season without one last term and only have one in their opening 14 games here.
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The Norwich City injury list doesn’t look like it is close to coming to a close. Ben Gibson has joined it now with a metatarsal injury and he joins the likes of Angus Gunn, Ashley Barnes, Grant Hanley and Jacob Sorensen who are missing.
Blackburn Rovers have a lengthy absentee list of their own with Aynsley Pears, Sam Barnes, Dom Hyam, Ryan Hedges and Sam Gallagher all injured while Hayden Carter is suspended. Sammie Szmodics faces a fitness test.
I think it would be pretty foolish not to expect goals in this one. No team in the league have conceded more goals than the 27 that have ended up in the Norwich City net but Blackburn Rovers aren’t far behind with 23. That is 50 goals against combined in 28 matches at nearly two goals per game. Both teams go into this match without their first-choice goalkeeper and a bunch of central defenders so it makes sense for the attackers to have the better of this one.
While Norwich are struggling to keep the ball out of the back of their net, their 25 goals was only bettered by the top two in the table heading into the weekend while the 20 goals that Blackburn have scored is pretty acceptable. Given the amount of defensive players both these teams are missing and the will to win they will both have I find it hard to believe there won’t be goals in this game. I like over three goals here.
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