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Preview: Blackburn Rovers vs. Charlton Athletic

Sports Mole previews Saturday's Championship clash between Blackburn and Charlton at Ewood Park as the hosts look to stop a run of two straight defeats.

Blackburn Rovers will be looking for a timely return to winning ways when they host Charlton Athletic at Ewood Park this weekend.

It has been a miserable December for Gary Bowyer's side so far, with defeat at home to Sheffield Wednesday being followed by a 3-1 loss at the hands of Brentford last Saturday.

They are now without a win in three games and have won just one of the last six, leaving the playoff hopefuls four points adrift of the top six.

Only five teams in the entire league have conceded more goals than Rovers this season, but any plans to strengthen at the back in January were hit by the news this week that the club have been placed under a transfer embargo.

Indeed, they have now gone eight matches without keeping a clean sheet, which is the longest run of its kind in the Championship.

At the other end of the pitch, however, Blackburn have a potent strike force that has helped them to 10 consecutive games in which they have scored - also the longest current streak in the league.

Jordan Rhodes is expected to return to that attacking lineup having started the last match on the bench, while Bowyer has no new injury concerns to worry about.

For Charlton, it was yet another draw last time out - their 12th of the season after just 21 matches - but they would have been disappointed at being held by bottom-of-the-table Blackpool.

The Addicks are certainly a tough team to beat under Bob Peeters having lost the joint fewest number of games in the division, but they have also only picked up six wins this season, and only the bottom five have managed fewer.

Even so, they remain in the top half of the table approaching the midway point of the season, and the club's hierarchy are sure to have deemed the campaign a success so far.

The likes of Stephen Henderson and Rhoys Wiggins are both closing in on a return to the squad, but this weekend will come too soon for the sidelined duo.

Indeed, Peeters could opt to name an unchanged side despite only managing a point last time out.


Recent form: DDWDLL

Possible starting lineup: Steele; Baptiste, Hanley, Duffy, Olsson; Cairney, Evans, Williamson, Marshall; Gestede, Rhodes


Recent form: DWDLDD

Possible starting lineup: Pope; Gomez, Ben Haim, Bikey, Fox; Solly, Buyens, Gudmundsson, Cousins; Harriott, Vetokele

Sports Mole says: 2-1

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Blackpool Manager Lee Clark looks on prior to the Sky Bet Championship match between Fulham and Blackpool at Craven Cottage on November 5, 2014
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