EPL: Blackburn impress their new owners

Posted on by SoccerPunter

Two goals from Morten Gamst Pedersen got Blackburn Rovers’ new era under Indian ownership off to a winning start with a 2-0 victory over Aston Villa on Sunday.

Pedersen struck a goal in each half as Blackburn delighted new owners Venkateshwara and Balaji Rao, watching from the stands at Ewood Park after their takeover of the club was confirmed on Friday.

The win lifted Blackburn to 11th in the Premier League table with 18 points, trailing Newcastle in 10th by virtue of goal difference.

The victory was reward for a disciplined display by Rovers, who punished Villa at the end of the first half following the latest in a string of fouls committed by the visitors in dangerous areas.

Villa defender Stephen Warnock needlessly bundled over Blackburn’s El-Hadji Diouf wide out on the right, and from the ensuing free-kick Pedersen whipped in a wicked cross which Brad Friedel misjudged completely as it curled in.

Villa were a different side after the interval, and within three minutes of the restart had created more goalscoring chances than they managed in the entire first half.

England international Ashley Young was the first to test Paul Robinson, cutting in from the left flank and unleashing a powerful shot that the Rovers keeper managed to bat away.

Young almost scored in the next passage of play, but his header from a Stewart Downing cross crashed off the bar.

But Villa’s bright start counted for little midway through the half when Pedersen netted his second.

Defender Phil Jones lashed in a shot from just inside the area and Norwegian international Pedersen was on hand to divert the ball past Friedel.

Villa handed a debut to new signing Robert Pires for the final 20 minutes, but the veteran Frenchman, signed on a free transfer, was unable to make much of an impact.

Blackburn had a chance to kill the game off when Michel Salgado crossed invitingly for Diouf, only for the unmarked Senegalese international to nod over from close range at the back post.

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