BLACKBURN Rovers are aiming to complete a double deal to sign Premier League pair Danny Graham and Elliott Ward.

Striker Graham is set to join Rovers on loan until the end of the season when his current contract at Sam Allardyce’s Sunderland runs out.


Bournemouth centre-back Ward will also be a free agent come the summer but he could make a permanent move to Ewood Park during this transfer window.

The arrival of the experienced duo would be a big boost to Rovers boss Paul Lambert ahead of Saturday’s Championship match at Charlton Athletic.

Lambert is down to the bare bones in defence and in attack after Matt Kilgallon fell ill before Tuesday’s FA Cup victory at Newport County and Chris Brown was sent off 10 minutes into the tie.

Brown has been hit with a three-game ban which will rule him out of the league trips to Charlton and Middlesbrough and the FA Cup fourth-round encounter at Michael Appleton’s Oxford United.

With Fode Koita and Nathan Delfouneso sidelined, and new boy Simeon Jackson still building up match sharpness, Lambert has only two two fully-fit and available forwards in Jordan Rhodes and Tom Lawrence.

However he should be able to include former Middlesbrough, Watford and Swansea City frontman Graham in the squad that heads to the Valley on Saturday.

The 30-year-old, the Championship’s top-scorer with Watford in the 2010-11 season, is keen to kick-start a career that has faltered at the Stadium of Light.

And Graham is ready to do that with Rovers after they reached an agreement with Sunderland over his wages.

Lambert is also hoping to be reunited with Ward, who he previously managed at Norwich City, before the Charlton clash.

Lancashire Telegraph:

The 31-year-old, who also counts West Ham United and Nottingham Forest among his former clubs, would have a chance of featuring after Kilgallon joined Shane Duffy on the sidelines.

Duffy is making good progress in his recovery from a groin injury but he has no chance of facing the Addicks.

That means, if Kilgallon misses out, captain Grant Hanley could be Rovers’ sole senior centre-back.

Darragh Lenihan slotted in alongside Hanley against Newport and impressed but Lambert wants to play the youngster in his natural centre-midfield position.

Leading marksman Rhodes stepped off the bench to seal a 2-1 success in Tuesday’s third-round tie with his 10th goal of the season and his first in 10 games.

Ahead of the rearranged match there was speculation that long-term suitors Middlesbrough and Sheffield Wednesday were ready to make a move for the striker.

Top-flight outfit Swansea City have also been credited with an interest.

But Rovers have not received any bids or firm enquiries for Rhodes and, after his side returned to winning ways at Newport, Lambert said: “I haven’t heard anything about Jordan leaving since I’ve been here. As far as I am concerned he is our player and we are delighted with his contribution.

“Until a manager picks up the phone and asks the question then I don’t have a problem but I haven’t had any calls at all.

“He’s a terrific professional, he gives it everything he’s got in all the games, which to be fair, all the group do.”