MORE often than not Gary Bowyer’s pre-match press conferences begin with a question about how his squad is shaping up for the next game.

On many occasions he has spoken positively about being close to full strength only for the injuries to pile up again after said game has taken place.


It has become such a recurring theme that Bowyer has joked in recent weeks he is going to ban the question being asked in fear of the curse striking again.

But without wanting to tempt fate I cannot imagine the Rovers boss will have had as many selection posers as he faces for the visit of Wolves to Ewood on Sunday.

Name any position on the field and Bowyer has plenty to ponder after the impressive performance his much-changed side produced in the FA Cup win at Charlton.

Not least on the wings where, if he again plays two wide players, Ben Marshall, Craig Conway, Chris Taylor and Josh King will battle it out.

King missed the victory at the Valley, and the league draw with Middlesbrough before that, but his goalscoring display against Bolton on Boxing Day proved that his pace brings a totally different dimension to the attack.

But as good as he was at the Macron Stadium should he come straight back into the side at the expense of Conway or Taylor, two of the stars of the Valley victory?

Conway, in particular, is really beginning to rediscover the fantastic form that made him such a key component of Bowyer’s starting line-up in the second half of last season.

Dropping him now may halt the genuine momentum he is building up.

And it would be harsh on Taylor if his reward for his match-winning double over Charlton was a place back on the bench.

But something, or more precisely, someone will have to give and, ironically, that could be Marshall.

I say ironically as Marshall has been hands down Rovers’ best wide man this season.

But he proved once again against the Addicks what a fine attacking right-back he is too.

Now not for one minute I am suggesting that it should be Marshall’s long-term position. That should instead be on the flanks or behind a front one or two where he can do the most damage.

But just because he is playing further back does not mean he cannot have a major influence on proceedings. The magnificent 1,038 Rovers supporters who made the trip to the capital on Saturday would testify to that. Playing Marshall at right-back, and retaining Adam Henley or recalling Alex Baptiste at left-back, in the likely absence of Markus Olsson and Tommy Spurr, would allow Rovers to field more of their in-form flyers.

That is, of course, the injury hoodoo that has blighted Bowyer’s reign in charge rears its ugly head.