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Boss hoping for an opening away day

Tony Mowbray has been looking ahead to the release of the 2020-21 season fixtures

20 August 2020

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Tony Mowbray says he's excited for the release of the 2020-21 fixture list, but is hoping to kick the campaign off away from Ewood Park.

At 9am tomorrow [Friday] we'll know each and every one of the dates, times and venues of our 46 Championship outings throughout 2020-21.

Although Rovers haven't had the best of times over the years when it's come to their season openers, Mowbray has his fingers crossed that an away tie will lift the pressure off Rovers when the campaign begins on Saturday 12th September.

In fact, it's been 10 years since our last opening day victory, which came at the start of the 2010-11 season against Everton at Ewood Park.

A solitary strike from Nikola Kalinic was the difference between the two sides in East Lancashire, with the Croatian pouncing on a mistake from visiting 'keeper Tim Howard.

And a decade on from that encounter, Mowbray says it will be a strange start to the season, with supporters still unable to attend matches for the beginning of 2020-21.

“The first game is always interesting, and I feel an away fixture is always a good fixture, mainly because everyone is so wound up and looking forward to that opening game," he admitted.

“Yet this year will be different because it's not a six-week pre-season. It'll be different this season with no crowds at the start and no real emotion from the stands, so we'll wait and see how it plays out.

“I like to play away from home on the opening day, going out there, going for it, feeling the adrenaline running through the team, hopefully get a win and then have a home game to come.

“There are going to be some strong teams in the division this season," the boss added when looking ahead to the competition.

"How strong are Derby going to be? How strong will Brentford be? Will they hold onto their best players? How strong are Forest going to be?

“Stoke City, with the financial power they have, they simply have to be stronger this season, whilst other clubs, like Huddersfield and Cardiff, Middlesbrough under Neil Warnock are always a threat.

“For us, we want to keep progressing, we're becoming a more entertaining team I think and I believe opposing teams know they'll be in for a tough game when they take on Blackburn Rovers.

“Let's keep our home form strong and keep working on ways to win matches away from home."

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