Could Rovers change formation against Stoke City?


Robert Folker looks ahead to this afternoon’s meeting with Stoke City, which could see Rovers change formation.

The 4-2-2-2 formation – or the box formation as it is also known – could be the way forward for Rovers who may need to switch it up to fit all their key players into the starting lineup.

The back four and goalkeeper, when everyone is fully fit, pretty much names itself. Thomas Kaminski in goal behind Ryan Nyambe, Darragh Lenihan, Jarrard Branwaithe with the only toss-up at left-back between Barry Douglas and Amari’i Bell.

In midfield is where the headaches start to present themselves to Tony Mowbray as Rovers have a handful of talented midfielders to pick from.

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Lewis Travis, Bradley Johnson, Stuart Downing, Tom Trybull, Lewis Holtby, Jacob Davenport, and Joe Rothwell can all play in the defensive midfield role.

Holtby, Rothwell, and Davenport could also be able to deployed in the attacking midfield roles if need be.

The standout defensive partnership is Lewis Travis and Bradley Johnson and that could be the partnership we see against Stoke, a game that seems to be made for the both of them.

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Having said that if Mowbray fancies more guile in the midfield positions, Rothwell or Holtby could provide that.,

You would like to think Bradley Dack is a nailed-on starter if he is fully in one of the attacking positions, and the same could be said for Harvey Elliott who Rovers should cherish whilst they have the talent at Ewood Park

Up-front, an Adam Armstrong and Ben Brereton (or Sam Gallagher) combination would allow Rovers to slip into a 4-5-1 whilst defending with Brereton dropping to the left-hand side of the midfield.

Downing will find himself hard done if he isn’t included in the starting lineup after an impressing when coming on in games. The veteran has been utilised to come on in games when Rovers need to control through a situation, and right now Rovers are in a tricky spot that needs expertly navigating out off.

If my maths is correct with Travis, Dack, Elliot, and Armstrong all nailed on starters when fit, that leaves Rothwell, Johnson, Downing, Holtby and Davenport to fight for the one spot left in midfield and either Brereton or Gallagher to partner Armstrong.

Rovers could stick with their 4-3-3 to fit in more midfielders, but one thing is for sure Mowbray will have had his drawing board out this week.

Thanks for reading.

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