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Boss boosted by Holtby and Evans returns

But both Amari'i Bell and Derrick Williams are 'touch-and-go' to face Bristol City

19 June 2020

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There will be an upgrade on the midfield options this weekend but a defensive dilemma for Tony Mowbray to contend with, as Rovers get set to resume the season against Bristol City on Saturday afternoon.

Having suffered with long injury lay-offs, Lewis Holtby and Corry Evans are back, fully fit and available for selection agains the Robins at Ewood Park.

Holtby's been out of action since injuring his lateral collateral ligament away at Middlesbrough back in February, and was expected to miss the rest of the campaign, before the suspension to the season offered the German a second chance.

For Evans the wait has been even longer. The Northern Irish international suffered a horrific fractured skull against Preston North End in January, but he too is back in contention to feature against Lee Johnson's play-off chasers.

“We’re looking okay, not 100% perfect, but better than it was before the break came," Mowbray revealed to iFollow Rovers when giving an injury update ahead of the encounter.

“It’s good for us to have Corry and Lewis back, but it’s good for them as well because they’re big players for us, important players for us.

“Lewis is an infectious player, desperate to improve, do well, and is always in the video rooms and speaking to the coaches about how he can get better.

“He’s always keen to know what he’s done well at and what he can improve on. He sets the tone for the young players about how a top professional behaves and reacts.

“He’s a goal threat for us, as we’ll remember from that game at Sheffield Wednesday a few months back.

“As for Corry, he’s an international footballer for us and brings an efficiency, a sharpness and an ability to break up play. He’s a very important cog in the team."

But whilst the news is good regarding the middle of the pitch, Mowbray's sweating on the fitness of both of his senior left back options.

Amari'i Bell and Derrick Williams missed the trip to take on Liverpool behind closed doors just over a week ago, and the pair are doubts heading into this weekend.

“Amari’i and Derrick are touch-and-go," the boss added. "Derrick felt his calf after we returned back to training and we had to pull him out.

“Derrick’s touch-and-go, whilst Belly is someone who we’ll assess as we get closer to the game.

“Amari’i Bell at times is a difficult lad to fathom out, but there’s every chance he’ll be okay.

“If not, we’ll shuffle the pack, but we’ll be fine."

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