Our prediction for this FA Cup match:
A spot in the FA Cup last 16 will be at stake when Birmingham City and Blackburn Rovers face each other in a replay at St. Andrew’s Stadium. The Blues showed character in the original fixture at the weekend, with substitute Jordan James scoring a late equalizer, but this is unlikely to help the teenager earn a place in the starting XI. Both Hannibal Mejbri and Juninho Bacuna, though, should be recalled to the starting line-up.
The Riversiders, on the other hand, aim to put an end to their three-game winless run in all competitions, but beating Birmingham City on the road is easier said than done. Taking everything into account, yet another close encounter is on the horizon, and we are tempted to put our money on draw. As for the away side, Sammie Szmodics could replace Bradley Dack in the starting XI.
Highlighted Player (George Friend):
George Friend has played for no less than nine English clubs so far in his career. Friend made his first-team debut for non-League club Exeter City on April 17, 2006 in a goalless draw with Forest Green Rovers and he stayed at St James Park until 2008. After ending his loan spells with Tiverton Town and Team Bath he joined Wolverhampton, but he made no more than seven appearances for the Wolves in the league.
The 188-cm-tall left-back, who is capable of playing as a centre-back as well, played for the likes of Millwall, Southend, Scunthorpe United and Exeter City on loan during his spell with Wolverhampton and at the end of the 2009/2010 season he signed a two-year deal with Doncaster Rovers. Friend made his Doncaster debut on August 7, 2010 in a 2-0 win over Preston and after three years at the club he was sold to Middlesbrough for a fee of £100,000.
The left-footed defender has been playing for Boro ever since and you should know that he made 24 appearances for the club in the 2016/2017 Premier League campaign.
Highlighted Team (Blackburn Rovers):
Blackburn Rovers have been trying to return to the Premier League ever since they dropped to the Championship in 2012. The Riversiders compete in the English second tier and they play their home games at Ewood Park. Blackburn were founded back in 1875 and they are one of the founding members of the Football League (1888).
Burnley are considered Blackburn’s main rivals and the two teams square off against each other in the East Lancashire derby. It has to be noted that Blackburn Burnley 7-1 in their first ever meeting in the East Lancashire Derby on 3 November, 1888. The Riversiders have won three First Division (Premier League) trophies (1911/1912, 1913/1914, 1994/1995).
Blackburn Rovers have clinched six FA Cup titles as well. Speaking of the club’s European success, the Riversiders won the UEFA Intertoto Cup in 2007. The colour of Blackburn’s home kit is blue and white.