blackburn and Leeds played out an uneventful goalless draw at Ewood Park - a result that does little for either side’s npower Championship play-off hopes.
Blackburn and Leeds played out an uneventful goalless draw at Ewood Park - a result that does little for either side’s npower Championship play-off hopes.
Leeds pinned the hosts into their own half for much of the early action but the only save of note in the opening 45 minutes came when Paddy Kenny denied Rovers forward Colin Kazim-Richards.
Ross McCormack wasted Leeds’ best chance shortly after half-time while Blackburn’s top scorer Jordan Rhodes brought Ewood Park to its feet with a shot into the side netting.
Rovers returned to their miserly defensive ways following Tuesday night’s 2-0 defeat at Hull to keep a fifth clean sheet in nine games under Michael Appleton but strike pairing Rhodes and DJ Campbell were badly starved of service.
It was a similar story for Leeds, whose attacks lacked the bite given to them by Luciano Becchio before his deadline day move to Norwich.
If Middlesbrough beat Millwall in this evening’s late kick-off, Neil Warnock’s Whites will lie eight points shy of the top six with 13 games to play - one more than Boro - and a point ahead of Blackburn, who also hold a game in hand.
David Bentley was handed a first start since returning to Blackburn on loan from Tottenham , as was QPR loanee Campbell as injured duo Lee Williamson and Martin Olsson made way - the latter absent after being hit in his eye by a ball during training yesterday.
Warnock named an XI unchanged from Wednesday night’s 2-0 triumph over Blackpool.
Leeds set about a lethargic Blackburn in the opening exchanges as Grant Hanley twice blocked bravely from McCormack and Tom Lees connected tamely with the same player’s left-wing corner when well placed.
Hanley got himself in the way once more to thwart Steve Morison in the 17th minute and Luke Varney shanked the rebound wide from the edge of the area.
Blackburn struggled to get up to speed but Kazim-Richards collected Danny Murphy’s pass to force a fine save, low to his left, from Kenny before the half hour.
A further wave of Leeds pressure followed before Rovers belatedly enjoyed a period of sustained possession. Chances were not forthcoming.
McCormack spurned a golden opportunity two minutes after half-time when Morison found him with space and time in the Blackburn box, only to fire wide of the near post.
Rhodes, a peripheral figure for the first hour, nearly opened the scoring after Murphy dispossessed Lee Peltier and his side-footed effort rippled the side netting.
The game became slightly stretched in its final quarter and Blackburn centre-back Scott Dann almost put through his own goal, glancing McCormack’s cross behind in the 72nd minute as Leeds counter attacked to good effect.
Chances arrived at either end for Michael Tonge and Rhodes in the final 10 minutes but Kenny and opposite number Jake Kean would not be beaten.