Allardyce can’t wait for Dunn return

Rovers travel to Dunn’s former club Birmingham on Tuesday night in

the Premier League but the midfielder is expected to sit the match

out as he continues his recovery from a calf problem. Dunn picked

up the injury in the first half against Stoke last month, a match

which was the first of three consecutive goalless draws in the

league for Blackburn while he has been out of the team. Dunn

remains the club’s leading scorer with six goals and manager

Allardyce is hoping the 29-year-old will be fit to return for

Saturday’s game against Tottenham. “It shouldn’t be any longer than

this week,” Allardyce said. “I would expect him to be fit at the

latest for Spurs on Saturday, unless he has any more problems in

training. “Training last week was the main problem – he felt a

little twinge again so we’ll be a little bit more cautious and we

are looking forward to getting him back. “We need his goals. We

have suffered badly in front of goal in the last few weeks and we

must put that right now. “Certainly with David being the leading

goalscorer and provider of our goals prior to getting the injury

just shows how much we have missed him. “That is not to say we

haven’t created any chances – we have had some very good chances –

but we haven’t had the clinical finishing that we’d have expected

from somebody else in the team.” Dunn has been Blackburn’s talisman

this campaign and Allardyce likened his importance within the team

to that of Lee Bowyer, who has scored winners in three of

Birmingham’s last four games. “If you look at Lee Bowyer at the

moment at Birmingham, he has scored three in four and they have won

all the games he has scored in,” Allardyce said. “That is very

similar to Dunny in the early part of the season for us. “People

say it’s only one player in 11, but when they are the man in top

form as Dunny was and Lee Bowyer certainly is for Birmingham, then

it shows you their importance for changing a draw into a win and

what three points means to you.” The 0-0 draws against Stoke,

Liverpool and Hull have been in stark contrast to Blackburn’s

early-season form, where they were scoring freely at home and

conceding heavily away. Allardyce has been pleased with the

improved defensive displays, but having seen his players squander

several match-winning opportunities in recent weeks, he is hoping

for a greater end product from his forward line at St Andrew’s. “We

have gone from one extreme to the other,” Allardyce said. “We have

gone from the extreme of being able to score goals on a regular

basis and then conceding too many, which caused us to only have one

clean sheet. “That made life very difficult to cope with – we got

thrashed at Everton 3-0, thrashed at Chelsea by five, thrashed at

Arsenal 6-2, but then we would come back home and be a completely

different team, steamrolling the opposition. “Now there is a 0-0

draw against Stoke and a 0-0 against Liverpool, and in those games

we had many chances to have won and didn’t. “When we looked at the

Hull City game, we had many chances again to score and we did score

the hardest through Benni McCarthy, but that was unfortunately

ruled offside. “We will hopefully continue to make those chances,

and on Tuesday night, start to convert them.”