Rovers FT: Doncaster Rovers 2 Blackburn 0

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New boy Theo Robinson made an instant impact as Rovers picked up their first win since their return to the Championship, against Blackburn.

A well-timed run saw the striker head home at the near post to give Rovers a deserved lead in the first half.

James Husband

James Husband

And James Husband, intentional or not, produced a stunning strike which killed off Blackburn’s push for an equaliser 13 minutes into the second half.

This was the first meeting between the two clubs in 43 years and Rovers were looking to alter a history of Blackburn dominance.

Important also for Paul Dickov’s side was to kick start their Championship campaign following the disappointment of the opening day defeat to Blackpool.

The game was played at a breathless tempo in the early stages but it was Rovers who had the better of the play in the final third throughout the first half.

Theo Robinson

Theo Robinson

Brown showed his usual undying determination on nine minutes to chase down Hanley’s short back pass and slide in ahead of Blackburn keeper Kean only to watch the ball trickle past the far post.

The solid central duo Keegan and Wellens quickly adapted to nullify the threat of Blackburn veteran Dunne who looked to roam between the lines and feed striker Rhodes.

And from then on, the visitors struggled to forge opportunities.

Rovers continued to find gaps with Cotterill seeing a curling effort parried clear by Kean on 13 minutes while the Blackburn keeper was again strong as he slid out to close down the lively Robinson who was put clear through on 15 minutes.

Blackburn threatened for the first time on 28 minutes when Turnbull raced out to challenge Rhodes and missed with the striker then only just failing in an attempt to curl an ambitious effort in from close to the touchline.

The most clear-cut chance fell to Coppinger on the half hour as he collected a low pass 10 yards out but struggled to get his shot away with Kean eventually saving a tame effort.

Rovers finally got their reward on 36 minutes with the opening goal.

After usual set-piece taker Cotterill dummied, Husband whipped in a perfectly weighted free kick from the right with lively debutant ROBINSON darting in to head home at the near post.

Blackburn had the ball in the back of the net on 42 minutes through a Taylor header but it was ruled out for offside on Rhodes’ knock-back.

It proved to be a rare attempt for the visitors inside the Rovers box as £8m man Rhodes was largely isolated in his loan striker role.

The impressive Husband superbly saved Rovers from conceding three minutes into the second half as he got ahead of Taylor to head Dunne’s cross back across goal.

Blackburn started the second half firmly on the front foot and it took some spectacular clearances from Khumalo after a series of corners for the visitors.

But it was Rovers who would - spectacularly - find the net next, against the run of play on 58 minutes.

HUSBAND collected a short free kick from Cotterill and launched the ball into the area under pressure, sending it over the head of Kean and into the net.

Blackburn breathed a huge sigh of relief on 71 minutes as a great deal of good misfortune denied Rovers a third.

Brown shot on the volley six yards out but a desperate block somehow scuffed the ball straight into Kean’s hands.

Blackburn boss Bowyer threw on Best alongside Rhodes but an expected onslaught from the visitors did not materialise.

The best it got for Blackburn was a pair of high and wide blasts courtesy of Judge from outside the area and a corner headed over by Hanley.

The result was a deserved win for Rovers - only their second ever over Blackburn - as they got off the mark in the Championship.