Tony Mowbray doesn’t foresee wholesale changes for the visit of Aston Villa - despite acknowledging he now has more options available than at any stage of his Rovers managerial career.

So far this season no team in the Championship has handed fewer minutes to new signings than Rovers.

Although having gone into the international break on the back of a 4-1 defeat at Bristol City and several familiar faces back fit, Mowbray maintains a level of trust on those who have started in the early weeks.

“It could do – but I don’t really see the need to make wholesale changes at this moment,” he said.

“The team have had a rest. It was eight games from the start of the season, six league games and two cup matches, and the team lost once on the back of only losing six in 46 league games. I think this team deserve the chance to keep striving and seeing how far they go.

“There was plenty of positivity from the game at Bristol City in my opinion. I thought it was harsh on the team to come in at 1-1, it could easily have been 0-2 or 0-3.

“I think that highlights the quality of the opposition in this league and I think there will be occasions this season where we could find ourselves on the end of a bad result.

“Whether we bounce back will depend on the spirit of the group remaining as tight as it is, that will be the test and the challenge for us.”

Rovers and Villa both have identical records from the opening six matches and went into the break on the back of 4-1 defeats. However, their starts have been viewed very differently, with Steve Bruce’s side above Rovers on goal difference.

Beaten play-off finalists last year, Villa are expected to go close to the top six once again.

Asked about their start, Mowbray said: “They’re ahead of us on goal difference in the table.

“Yet they have had a shocking start by all accounts and we have had a pretty decent one.

“Brucey has been around a long time, had promotions out of the Championship, he knows the strengths and weaknesses of his team, knows his players and added the likes of (Yannick) Bolasie and Tammy Abraham to his team and to what is already a talented and experienced squad.

“We expect a really tough game against a wounded animal type Aston Villa side who will have huge support and players who are trying to get a result and get back on track.

“For us, we have got a proud record at home to try and protect and we will look forward to seeing how we get on.

“It’s nearly a year since we lost at home and we will take that proud record in to the game on Saturday night.”