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Preview: Oxford v Rovers

Rovers continue their League One schedule with a trip to the Kassam Stadium on Tuesday evening

21 November 2017

Rovers can cement their place in the League One play-off places with a second away win in the space of three days.

Here's our guide for the game at Oxford United.

STATE OF PLAY

The win at Bury on Saturday moved Rovers back into the play-off places, shifting up a place from seventh to sixth in the table. Oxford's big win against ten-man Plymouth meant they moved themselves up to seventh - a place and two points behind Rovers, but having played two games more than Tony Mowbray's men. David Raya continued his fine form in goal on Saturday and the goalkeeper - and the team - have only conceded four goals away from home in the league so far - an EFL-best record. Kick-off against United is scheduled for 7.45pm on Tuesday, and fans can follow the action via our official Twitter account, with highlights available for iFollow Rovers subscribers after the game.

TEAM NEWS

Mowbray confirmed on Monday morning that Corry Evans is back available after missing out through suspension at Bury at the weekend. Elliott Ward is also available for selection again for the Rovers boss, but Harry Chapman and Darragh Lenihan remain long-term absentees for Blackburn. The game at the Kassam Stadium comes too early for both Craig Conway and Ben Gladwin, who Mowbray believes are still a couple of weeks away from returning to the squad.

For the hosts, an injury to forward Rob Hall makes him a doubt for the game, whilst capain Curtis Nelson is also out long-term with a ruptured Achilles.

OUR OPPONENTS

Rovers' record appearance holder Derek Fazackerly is the assistant first team coach at Oxford, and the 66-year-old is without doubt a Rovers legend having amassed an amazing 671 games during an 18-year career in East Lancashire. Another ex-Rover in the form of goalkeeper Simon Eastwood is likely to start in goal for the U's on the night. Eastwood spent three years at Ewood Park but struggled for regular game time before moving to Oxford in the summer of 2016, where he's been an ever-present in their XI. The much-travelled Wes Thomas is Oxford's top scorer this season, whilst Huddersfield loanee Jack Payne will also have to be marshalled closely in the number ten role. Like ourselves, Pep Clotet's side come into this one on the back of a big away win and a clean sheet.

HEAD-TO-HEAD

Rovers have lost only one of the last 12 games against Oxford in all competitions - the latest result being a 0-3 win at the Kassam Stadium in the FA Cup in January 2016. Five of the current Rovers squad played that day, but none of the Oxford starting XI for that game are still contracted to the club. Since the first clash in 1964, Blackburn have won nine, drawn ten and lost seven against the U's.

SHARE YOUR FAN PICS

Having enjoyed superb support all season, Rovers could well be taking over 600 fans for Tuesday's trip. If you're making the journey to support the lads, be sure to tag your matchday pictures with #Rovers! We'll share the best posts on our official Twitter and Instagram pages. 

OTHER FIXTURES

There's a full League One schedule this midweek, here are the other fixtures: Blackpool vs. Gillingham, Bradford vs. Scunthorpe, Bury vs. Shrewsbury, Charlton vs. Rochdale, MK Dons vs. Southend, Oldham vs. AFC Wimbledon, Peterborough vs. Portsmouth, Plymouth vs. Northampton, Walsall vs. Fleetwood and Wigan vs. Doncaster.


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