It seems like every game Newcastle United play these days is important, and itâ€™s no different at Ewood Park today. Weâ€™re coming off one of our worst displays ever at home last week against Liverpool, and Sam and his players have been working on the basics all this week.
Weâ€™re looking for a real solid performance from the lads and a good defensive display too.
A win today would be just great for all the Geordie fans scattered around the world, but a draw and a good display would be acceptable too. But we know Sam and his boys are going for the win.
Blackburn had a terrible game on Wednesday evening and were well beaten by a good Aston Villa side, so they will want to atone for that poor home display. We expect Mark to change his team from Wednesday evening. Steven Reid is pushing for a start, after coming on for a while against Villa. Mark may also switch his strikers around to give England Under-21s international Matt Derbyshire a start. That means he will have to omit either Benni McCarthy or Roque Santa Cruz. But Newcastle just have to up their game and try to get back on track in the league today.
We are hoping that both Steven Taylor and Abdoulaye Faye will be able to return to the back four and weâ€™d also like to see Habib Beye keep his place for a back four that would look something like this.
Taylor Faye Beye Enrique.
But Sam may well want to have Rozehnal in there somewhere. David didnâ€™t have a good game last week but very few of the Newcastle team did. Weâ€™d also like to see an orthodox central midfield and itâ€™s fairly easy â€“ one attacking midfielder and one defensive midfielder.
So itâ€™s Emre or Barton paired with Geremi, Butt or Smith.
The front two really pick themselves in Viduka and Martins and weâ€™d very much like to see Milner on the right wing and Nâ€™Zogbia on the left wing.
If we can play an orthodox team like that we could well be in business. But what we donâ€™t want is some unorthodox team where Sam shifts people around so he can include, say Smith somewhere in the team. Smith can play upfront or in central midfield, but it unbalances the team when heâ€™s on the wing, because he drifts inside too much.
Blackburn may also make one or two changes from their side on Wednesday night to freshen things up a bit.
Weâ€™d like to see the Newcastle team something, like this
Taylor Beye Faye Enrique
Milner Geremi Emre Nâ€™Zogbia
Subs: Harper, Rozehnal, Barton, Smith, Butt
We expect the boys to turn up today and play well. We really need an inspired performance. A win would be fantastic and a draw would be acceptable, but another defeat is not even worth thinking about. Weâ€™ll hope for the win at 2-1, and if we can achieve that, we’ll be very very happy.
Comments very welcome.