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Match pack: Blackburn (A)

17 April 2015

Get all the news and views ahead of Nottingham Forest's Sky Bet Championship trip to Blackburn Rovers on Saturday (kick-off 3pm).

 Blackburn Rovers v Nottingham Forest
Sky Bet Championship
Saturday 18 April (kick-off 3pm)
Ewood Park

Pre-match brief

Nottingham Forest and Blackburn Rovers both harbour hopes of achieving a top-ten finish in the Sky Bet Championship but one side could take a giant step towards that goal when the two sides go head-to-head at Ewood Park tomorrow.

Dougie Freedman's men have struggled to find form in recent weeks despite some battling performances but will be hoping for a strong end to the campaign with trips to Blackburn and Ipswich before they host Cardiff on the final day.

Rovers have enjoyed another solid season under the astute management of Gary Bowyer during which they reached the FA Cup quarter-finals and always pose a threat on their own turf with 18-goal striker Jordan Rhodes in attack.

Team news

Nottingham Forest defender Kelvin Wilson will be suspended for tomorrow's trip to Blackburn following his red card in the defeat to Watford on Wednesday night so Michael Mancienne could once again move into the back four.

Dougie Freedman will have a number of selection choices to make ahead of the trip to Ewood Park as Modou Barrow and Dexter Blackstock were both fit enough to make the bench in midweek and could both return to the starting line-up.

Blackburn manager Gary Bowyer chose to make a number of changes for the game at Birmingham on Tuesday and could rotate his squad once more for tomorrow's clash but academy graduate John O'Sullivan will hope to keep his place.

Striker Rudy Gestede returned from injury to make an appearance from the bench at St Andrew's and could be fit enough to start but Shane Duffy, Jason Lowe, Grant Hanley, Josh King, Chris Taylor and David Dunn are all still sidelined.

What's the form guide?

Nottingham Forest are now without a win in five matches following defeats to Norwich, Wolves, Huddersfield and Watford but will take confidence from an improved second-half showing against the Hornets on Wednesday night.

Forest produced a strong showing in their last away game, a 2-2 draw at Brentford where they were denied by a last-minute leveller, and tomorrow's game will give them a chance to achieve only a second win at Ewood Park in 15 years.


Blackburn head into tomorrow's game on the back of a three-match unbeaten run in the Championship as an impressive 3-0 win at Leeds United was followed up by successive draws against Reading (0-0) and Birmingham (2-2).

Gary Bowyer's side currently sit one point and one place above Forest in the league table and with three of their final four matches due to be played at Ewood Park, the home side will be confident of securing a top-ten finish.

Haven't we met before?

Despite Matty Fryatt's first-half opener for Forest, Blackburn hit back with three goals of their own after the interval through Alex Baptiste, Rudy Gestede and Jordan Rhodes to take all three points from The City Ground in October.

The corresponding fixture last season at Ewood Park was a memorable one for The Reds as Darius Henderson smashed the ball home in stoppage time to keep up Forest's 100% start to the 2013-14 campaign with a win in Lancashire.

Before that victory, Forest hadn't tasted victory at Blackburn since May 1999 when goals from Dougie Freedman and Chris Bart-Williams sealed a 2-1 win at Ewood Park despite a red card for Steve Chettle just before the break.


Are tickets available?

Tickets for Nottingham Forest's Sky Bet Championship trip to Blackburn are still available.

For details and a full list of prices, please click here.

How do I get there?

Leave the M6 at Junction 29 and join the M65 and head East to Blackburn. Ewood Park is well signposted on the M65, leave at junction 4, join the A666 and head towards Blackburn. Ewood Park is about a mile away on the right.

Blackburn station is approximately a mile and a half from Ewood Park. Mill Hill station is approximately one mile away from the ground. There are direct trains from Manchester Victoria, Salford Crescent and Preston.

What if I can't make the game?

Live audio commentary will be available on Forest Player, as well as live text commentary on and via @Official_NFFC on Twitter.

Forest Player will also have extended match highlights from 12pm on Sunday, as well as all the reaction from the Forest camp.

What are the odds?

Nottingham Forest are the 11/4 outsiders to take all three points away from Ewood Park tomorrow with the draw priced at 23/10 and a victory for the home side being priced as the current favourite at evens.

Darius Henderson's goal gave Forest a 1-0 win on the same ground last season and a repeat of that scoreline can be backed at 11/1 while a more comfortable 3-0 victory for The Reds has odds of 40/1.

Tyler Walker found the back of the net in the last away game at Brentford and is priced at 5/2 to repeat the feat at Ewood Park while Gary Gardner, who netted on Wednesday night, can be backed at 4/1 to do the same tomorrow.

For all the latest odds on tomorrow's game, please visit and make a prediction for Blackburn v Forest.

Who is in charge?

Referee: Andy Haines
Assistant Referees: Barry Cropp and Robert Jones
Fourth Official: Darren Bond

Who else is playing?

Norwich v Middlesbrough (Friday, kick-off 7.45pm)
Wolves v Ipswich (Saturday, kick-off 12.15pm)
Blackpool v Fulham
Bournemouth v Sheffield Wednesday
Brentford v Bolton
Cardiff v Millwall
Charlton v Leeds
Huddersfield v Derby
Watford v Birmingham
Wigan v Brighton

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