United v Blackburn
Premier League
Sat 31 October (17:30 GMT)
Old Trafford

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29/10/2009 09:06, Report by Ben Hibbs

Match Pack: Blackburn

After stuttering at Anfield, the Reds aim to get back on track against struggling Rovers...

Form guide Blackburn haven't won on the road in the league this season, and they're leaking an alarming number of goals. A 3-2 triumph in the derby against Burnley, which came between a 6-2 defeat to Arsenal and last weekend's 5-0 hammering at Chelsea, provides some hope, as has their 5-2 midweek victory over Peterborough in the Carling Cup. But 15 goals conceded in the last four games is hardly the best preparation for a trip to OT. United on the other hand, have dropped points in two of the last three league games, and will be desperate to get last Sunday's Anfield defeat out of the system.

Manager Good friend of Sir Alex, Sam Allardyce has a big job on his hands at Ewood Park, not least with Blackburn sitting uncomfortably in 16th place in the league. That said, just five points separate Wigan in 10th and Hull in 18th places, so they could easily climb the table if Big Sam can cure Rovers' leaky defence. He's not been in contact with his players this week as he feels the affects of a virus. Rovers are trying to contain an outbreak of swine flu, so Sam sat in the stands for their win over Posh.

Ins and outs Blackburn have seemingly restricted the swine flu problem, with defender Christopher Samba still struggling. But Rovers say they are monitoring the situation day-by-day. Right-back Pascal Chimbonda (calf) and midfielder Vince Grella (thigh) are also doubts. United will be without Ji-sung Park (knee) while Darren Fletcher has yet to play since injuring his foot on international duty with Scotland. Ryan Giggs, Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic are all doubts, while Gary Neville is suspended.

Star man David Dunn. He's scored five goals in eight games playing 'in the hole' just behind the strikers this season, and doing it to great effect. He was one of those who came down with a virus this week, but came on as a substitute against Peterborough and will be the main threat on Saturday.

Referee Phil Dowd. First United match he's officiated this season. His last game in charge of United was our 2-0 defeat to Fulham in March last year, in which he sent off Paul Scholes and Wayne Rooney.

Rivals watch Arsenal v Tottenham, Sat 12:45 BST; Bolton v Chelsea, 15:00; Fulham v Liverpool, 15:00; Birmingham v Man City, Sun 16:00.


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