Pompey to meet Blackburn in different circumstances

Conor Chaplin remains in demand. Picture: Colin Farmery

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Pompey face Blackburn Rovers for the first time in eight seasons – and it’s in much different surroundings than previously.

The two were formerly well-established forces in the Premier League.

Kanu takes on Morten Gamst Pedersen.  Picture: Steve Reid

Kanu takes on Morten Gamst Pedersen. Picture: Steve Reid

The past 15 meetings between the two clubs came while both occupied the top flight, with one being in the League Cup.

On their day, both Pompey and Rovers were capable of putting up a fight against any team in the Premier League.

In the 2007-08 season, Blackburn – whose squad featured the likes of Brad Friedel, David Bentley and Roque Santa Cruz – finished seventh in the Premier League.

That was one place above Harry Redknapp’s troops, who gloriously won the FA Cup that campaign – not that Fratton fans need reminding.

Now both clubs find themselves in League One, having shared a similar rollercoaster experience with ownership and managers.

It’s not been a frenetic, nor dismal start from the Blues or Blackburn this season.

Both have picked up 20 points, with Pompey in 11th place and Rovers in 10th – although Tony Mowbray’s side have two games in hand on Kenny Jackett’s men.

The last time the Blues and Rovers met was on April 3, 2010, at Fratton Park.

It was hardly a thrilling affair, with the game ending in a 0-0 draw and Avram Grant’s men edging even closer to relegation.

The Blues last made the 472-mile round trip to Ewood Park on November 7, 2009.

Pompey took the lead through Jamie O’Hara on 15 minutes, but a second-half double from Jason Roberts and a Ryan Nelsen strike earned the hosts all three points.

The first meeting between the two was an FA Cup first-round clash on January 27, 1900, which ended a 0-0 draw.

Blackburn won the second replay of the tie 5-0.

The Blues’ overall record against the Ewood Park outfit is 26 wins, 38 losses and 26 draws, at a win rate of 30 per cent.