Date:Thursday November 9 2006
I'm a man of my word (hahaha): I've promised to put up James Watson's answers and now you can read the Blackburn site's co-editor's views on Rovers' poor form, Sparky and much more...
1. Blackburn have got one point from their last 4 games, losing three in a row. What can be the reason behind your poor league form?
It is simple, tiredness. We have been a tad unfortunate with injuries already this season with three key players ruled out for a considerable length of time, including our captain. These injuries have meant that the squad has been stretched early on, much earlier than Hughes would have anticipated. I think it is clear to see that watching the lads, two games every week is taking its toll. I also believe we are dangerously thin on the ground in midfield. Due to the loss of Bellamy in the summer, Hughes had to concentrate on organising a new forward line. The midfield was over-looked and this was the problem area.
2. United crashed out of the Carling Cup on Tuesday. Is it an advantage or disadvantage for Rovers as they look to turn their fortunes around in the league?
That embarrassing result will have no bearing on this fixture. It is important for Rovers to put in the kind of display that will ask plenty of questions of an in-form Utd side. I believe the key factor is Rovers' display because if we give it everything, which they haven't been doing of late due to fatigue, then I'm sure we can leave with a positive result.
3. How should Rovers stop United, do you reckon the home team should take the game to us, or you'd rather try to contain and counter the Reds?
Naturally we are better going forward and so it will be to our strengths to attack. We have all seen what happens if your try and defend against Utd; just ask Fulham fans. I think this has all the makings of an open and exciting fixture. I just hope Rooney doesn't relish it too much.
4. What's your take on Rovers' tag of being a brutal, hard, bullying team?
I'm tired of it now. Any journalist with a bit of quality can see that Rovers play some very attractive football. We are physical but that is part of our set up.
5. Mark Hughes is a United legend, no doubt but what's your opinion of his managerial skills? Are you satisfied with the job he's doing at Rovers?
Satisfied? Delighted. He is a tactical genius and is proving rather good in the transfer market so far. I am very happy and honoured to have Mark Hughes at the helm and long may it continue, although I'm sure you guys will have something to say about that in a couple of years. He has been tremendous in transforming a relegation threatened club into one that is prospering in Europe; another achievement in itself.
6. How would you feel if he got the chance to manage United? How would he feel, what do you think?
I feel everyone at Rovers wishes the best for our employees, firstly at Rovers but if that isn't possible then wherever else. I strongly believe that Hughes will get the chance to manage Utd, especially if he continues to be successful for Rovers. If he can win us a few cups before he goes then great. I expect him to be with us for at least another two-three years.
7. If you could have any of our players, who would you choose?
I shall refrain from the obvious of Rooney. It would be a choice between two really. Scholes would be the choice but he is getting on now, 31 isn't it? He is class though and has been a favourite of mine for years now. He would be closely followed by Carrick. He is another player I rate highly, perhaps not as high as £18.6million, but highly nevertheless. These would provide a great answer to our midfield problem. Fancy giving Fergie a call and see if he is being charitable?
8. Who is Blackburn's most prized asset, the player you would never want to lose?
David Bentley is certainly turning into a bit of a gem. Gamst is class although his form has fluctuated at times this season. Savage has endeared himself to the fans and then who have heroes like Friedel, Tugay and Nelsen, so it is a hard one to answer.
9. Rovers have beaten United home and away last season so you must be confident. What is your match prediction? Don't forget, no sequences last forever!
I agree with your closing statement, 'no sequences last forever'. Your winning run and our losing runs will both reverse on Saturday. Rovers to win 2-1.
A bold prediction, I might say but what do you think? Surely we won't lose two in a row?
Date:Thursday November 9 2006
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