Lowe plans a text appeal
HIS manager may not be making special plans to shackle Tom Ince in tomorrow’s Lancashire derby – but Blackburn Rovers midfielder Jason Lowe has been doing his best to put the Blackpool star off.
Lowe and Ince are England U21s team-mates and were part of the young Three Lions squad that competed at June’s UEFA European U21s Championship in Israel.
And Lowe said: “We keep in contact from time to time on the phone and I’ll be sending him a text trying to wind him up and put him off a little bit.
“He’s a good player and we know all about him.
“But we’ll go there full confidence, as always, as we’ve got the character and the spirit, and hopefully we’ll win the game.”
Ince – son of Blackpool boss and former Rovers manager Paul Ince – is one of the most sought after players outside of the Premier League.
The winger turned down an £8m move to top-flight new boys Cardiff City in June after scoring 18 times in the Championship last season.
Tom Ince’s form has not been quite so electric this season. He is, though, Blackpool’s top scorer with five goals in 10 games.
Rovers boss Gary Bowyer is a big fan of the 21-year-old.
But he said: “We won’t be making special plans for Tom because if you start doing that I think you’re being disrespectful to the other players who are capable of performing for Blackpool.
“But he is a fantastic player and if they can keep hold of him in the January transfer window then that would help Blackpool enormously.”
Another player who has been tipped to star in the Premier League is Jordan Rhodes.
The Rovers striker is the joint leading marksman in the Championship with nine goals and Paul Ince knows he poses a massive threat to his side’s unbeaten home record tomorrow.
The Seasiders boss said: “Jordan is a fantastic striker. He’s shown that every season – he scores goals for fun.
“Of course we’ll be aware of him but we can’t be too aware as that may create spaces for someone else to score.
“We know we have to concentrate for 90 minutes or he’ll punish us.”
Paul Ince worked with a handful of current Rovers players during his six months in the Ewood Park hotseat in 2008.
He made goalkeeper Paul Robinson his first signing and appointed David Dunn as his vice-captain.
Robinson and Dunn are on the comeback trail from injury and will play no part in tomorrow’s Bloomfield Road encounter.
The in-form Lowe and Alan Judge may be involved however.
Paul Ince marked Lowe out as one to watch and handed Judge his senior debut – before later signing the winger when he was in charge of Notts County.
Blackpool captain and ex-Rovers midfielder Barry Ferguson misses out tomorrow through injury.
But Ince believes Ferguson’s influence can rub off on his team-mates even though he is injured.
The skipper looks set to miss at least another three weeks following an ankle operation.
He’s spent most of his rehabilitation in Scotland but boss Ince has brought him back into the fold to boost the squad.
Ince revealed: “Barry’s back with us. As much as I’m frustrated and biting my nails about not being involved, so is he.”
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