Club Focus – Blackburn Rovers – Chimbonda on way out as Allardyce re-groups following defeat

Sam Allardyce apologised to Blackburn supporters following the team’s heavy 7-1 loss at Old Trafford and the Englishman has now reportedly placed defender Pascal Chimbonda on the transfer-list following his abject performance against the Red Devils.

The 31-year-old Frenchman slotted in at the left-back position but had a day to forget after a woeful 90 minutes. Chimbonda, who was on the verge of a move to West Ham in the summer, is useful as he can play in a number of positions and his versatility may have been a key factor in him being made to stay at Ewood Park. However, his performance against Manchester United appears to have been the final nail in the coffin as Rovers look to offload the former Spurs player in January.

One positive from that defeat however was the debut of youngster Josh Morris, who appeared for the Blues in the second half. Morris, 19, looked bright when he came on and provided a quality assist for Chris Samba’s goal. He also managed to seize five-goal hero Dimitar Berbatov’s shirt, which left the starlet delighted. The midfielder said: “It is everyone’s dream to play, especially at Old Trafford. I was told at half-time I might be coming on, did a bit of a warm up and the next minute I came on. I am still buzzing from it. Hopefully I get another chance in the next few weeks.”

Meanwhile, the move to bring Roque Santa Cruz back to Ewood Park is gathering pace, although Rovers may have to fight Fulham for the Paraguayan striker’s signature. Mark Hughes is also interested in purchasing the man he bought for Rovers and City and it is still unclear where the forward would like to go and it appears likely that City will not step in his way should he decide to move. However, his brother Julio may be on his way out of Ewood Park. The striker has been unable to force his way into Allardyce’s first eleven and a move back to Paraguay could be on the cards for the youngster.

One Blackburn player could be the subject of a bidding war by top clubs . Local boy Phil Jones has impressed several Premier League managers since his breakthrough into the starting eleven last season and the likes of Arsenal, Chelsea and Manchester United are all reportedly tracking him. Chelsea could make a bid in excess of £10m for the defender in January; however it is unlikely that Rovers would be willing to sell or indeed the player willing to move. The 18-year-old is currently a regular at Ewood Park and may not settle for a lesser role at a bigger club during these vital years in his development.

In other news, Rovers will face Championship leaders Queens Park Rangers in the FA Cup 3rd round in January. The tricky clash will take place at Ewood Park and with QPR doing so well this season, Neil Warnock’s men could provide Rovers with a difficult test.

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