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Rovers boss wants his men to turn into a mean machine
IT is no more Mr Nice Guy for Blackburn Rovers.
Boss Gary Bowyer believes the signing of Luke Varney on loan from Leeds will help his side develop a more ruthless streak as they bid to make the Championship play-offs.
The Rovers chief believes his side need to show more aggression if they are to gatecrash the top six.
Varney made his debut off the bench at Middlesbrough last time out having made the switch from Elland Road and Bowyer believes the powerful forward can bring more than just goals to the table.
Indeed, the Ewood boss is hopeful that Varney can help make Rovers, and the forward line in particular, more aggressive.
Bowyer said: “Sometimes we can be a bit nice to play against. He gives us a bit more aggression.
“He is a powerful lad. He has got the ability to score goals and he can create goals.
“He looks good in training and he looks like he is going to add a bit of bite to us.”
The 31-year-old only joined the club on the day of the Middlesbrough game but the two week gap without a fixture since that 0-0 draw has given him the chance to bed in with his new team-mates, something Bowyer thinks he has done well.
“You would think Luke has been with us a long time,” added the Rovers chief.
“He has settled in ever so well. he knows several of the boys already which helps. He has fitted in magnificently.”
The statistics would appear to back up Bowyer’s claims that Rovers can be too nice.
Only six sides have committed fewer fouls this season than Rovers’ 315 with their 49 yellow cards also placing them in the bottom half of a Championship table ranked by cautions.Rovers have had three red cards this season with nine teams having had fewer.
Of the top 57 players ranked by the Football League on discipline only Grant Hanley makes the list for Blackburn while Jordan Rhodes is the only other Rovers player in the top 100 besides Varney – who has yet to play 90 minutes for his new club.
Meanwhile, Bowyer believes the return of Corry Evans to the first team picture after four months out injured will be like having a new player.
Evans is unlikely to start this afternoon’s match at Reading but is set to be named among the substitutes.
“He is going to be like a new signing,” said Bowyer. “He has only made six appearances for us this season.
“We can’t expect too much too soon.
“I went to watch him play on Monday night for the reserves at Aston Villa and he still needs a few more games before he is at the level where he can compete at first team level but he is more than capable of coming off the bench and doing little stints.”