Rhodes res­cues Rovers again

The Football League Paper - - CHAMPIONSHIP - By David Tay­lor

APREDA­TOR like Jor­dan Rhodes is worth his weight in gold and after turn­ing a draw into a vic­tory against Ful­ham, no-one knows that bet­ter than Black­burn boss Gary Bowyer.

Rhodes pounced on a loose ball in the box to score his fourth goal of the sea­son and ruin Kit Sy­mons’ first game as bot­tom-ofthe-ta­ble Ful­ham’s care­taker man­ager.

The match turned just be­fore half-time when Shaun Hutchin­son was sent off for a reck­less chal­lenge on Rover’s mid­fielder Lee Wil­liamson and the ex­tra man soon told as Rhodes struck after the break.

“The goal is an out­stand­ing fin­ish,” Bowyer said. “I don’t think peo­ple will ap­pre­ci­ate what a good fin­ish that was be­cause it ric­o­cheted in the box.

“It’s an out­stand­ing skill. The way he dealt with it was mag­nif­i­cent. He made it look easy and it cer­tainly wasn’t.

“He does that time and time again. His work ethic is ter­rific.

“I thought we started bril­liantly. Com­ing in to the at­mos­phere and the emo­tional state of the game, I thought we went out and got on the front foot and con­trolled the game.

“Full credit to Kit, I thought he got them or­gan­ised and play­ing for him. The crowd was be­hind them so we knew it was go­ing to be a tough af­ter­noon on the back of a tough week.”

The send­ing off came at the end of a dull first half and there was no dis­put­ing the decision after Hutchin­son went fly­ing in with his studs up.

Wil­liamson’s leg looked badly hurt but thank­fully it was con­firmed after the game to be only bruised.

Up un­til that point nei­ther side had of­fered much go­ing for­ward.

Rover’s best ef­fort came after half an hour when a pow­er­ful shot from Rudy Gest­ede nearly em­bar­rassed Mar­cus Bet­tinelli in the Ful­ham goal but his parry fell safe.

The home side then started to look a bit more threat­en­ing and nearly took the lead through Hugo Ro­dal­lega but his fizzing 25yard ef­fort went just wide.

Black­burn be­gan strongly after the break and it wasn’t long be­fore they went ahead.

After a scram­ble in the box the ball fell to Rhodes ten yards out and he calmly poked the ball past Bet­tinelli.

Rhodes then had the chance to ex­tend Rover’s lead after round­ing the Ful­ham keeper but Dan Burns did well to get back and clear the ball.

Ful­ham’s ten men ral­lied well after that and nearly found an equaliser through Tim Hoog­land but the de­fender ‘s pow­er­ful ef­fort went just wide.

Over­all, the care­taker boss was very proud of his team’s dis­play and be­lieves he won’t have to wait long for the Cot­tager’s first league win of the sea­son.

“I couldn’t ask for any more from the play­ers, I’m de­lighted with the per­for­mance,” Sy­mons said.

“There was noth­ing in it in the first half when it was 11 v 11 and even in the sec­ond half we put up a good per­for­mance and had a few chances.

“We were very much in the game and it was a dis­ci­plined, res­o­lute per­for­mance with ten men. I couldn’t ask for any more from the play­ers.

“There’s a lot of stuff we need to work on and I’m go­ing to be a busy boy in train­ing for sure but the at­ti­tude and re­sponse in the two days I’ve had has been bril­liant from the lads.”

PIC­TURES: Ac­tion Images

SU­PER­STAR: Jor­dan Rhodes cel­e­brates scor­ing the win­ner for Black­burn Rovers

scores HIT­MAN: Jor­dan Rhodes

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