Tony Mowbray unimpressed with Blackburn’s first-half showing against Lincoln
Tony Mowbray was critical of Blackburn’s first-half performance despite defeating League Two leaders Lincoln City 4-1 in the Carabao Cup second round.
Although Joe Nuttall’s first goal of the season gave Blackburn an early lead, Lincoln went in level after Joan Luque’s emphatic near-post strike on his first start for the Imps.
But Rovers showed their quality after the break through Danny Graham’s confident finish – his second goal this season – a superb 20-yard effort from Paul Downing, and Kasey Palmer’s exquisite free-kick.
Ultimately, it gave the 2002 winners a comfortable passage into round three, but Mowbray was less than impressed, despite notching their fourth win in the last five games.
‘We got the job done in the end. I was really disappointed with the first half. It wasn’t acceptable for the standards we’ve been setting and I think they (the players) were disappointed with themselves,’ he said.
‘I think and we managed to put it right in the second half. We looked more like the team we know we can be, and with total respect to the opposition, we should be making them feel that we are on a different level with the ball.
‘As I’ve just said, when we played Liverpool in pre-season, you can feel it out there on the grass their quality, their extra control, extra speed and bit of vision.
‘I didn’t know who was the Championship side and who was League Two in the first half, and yet in the second half, we could see the difference.
‘That’s the pleasing thing, that we managed to put our foot on the gas when we needed to.’
Defeat was the Imps’ first in seven outings this season. After the game, manager Danny Cowley said the cup fixture scheduling should be better.
He said: ‘I think it’s always tough when you’re a League Two club and you come to a Championship club and make seven changes but needs must. We’ve got a run of nine games in 28 days and it’s challenging for a small group.
‘You know you’re going to take 1,200 supporters. They’re brilliant and it always plays with your conscience because you know they’ve paid their hard-earned money and given up their time to come and support you.
‘I would just love the EFL, I’ve said this before, I don’t know why they can’t put the first round in pre-season, so that comes in the penultimate week or last week in pre-season. Then put the second round where the first round is. If they want you to value the competition, you can’t play the second round off the back of us going Saturday, Tuesday, Saturday, Tuesday, Saturday, Tuesday. You can’t do it.’