Harrogate Town vs Blackburn Rovers Predictions

Harrogate Town vs Blackburn Rovers Predictions, Betting Tips and Match Previews in the second round of the EFL Cup. League Two Harrogate Town will welcome Blackburn Rovers at Wetherby Road. Can they cause an upset against in-form Championship side Rovers? Read on for our free predictions and tips.

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Harrogate Town vs Blackburn Rovers Predictions


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EFL Cup Clash: Harrogate Town Takes on Blackburn Rovers in a Bid for Round Three Glory

Key Stats
– Harrogate Town dominated their recent game with a striking 59% possession and 16 shots against Morecambe.
– Blackburn Rovers, with merely 34% ball possession, managed to hold their fort against 24 shots from Watford.
– Since their EFL Cup win in 2002, Blackburn haven’t progressed beyond the quarter-finals in the past 11 seasons.

This Wednesday evening, Harrogate Town, a League Two outfit, will play host to the Championship side Blackburn Rovers at Wetherby Road in a promising second round face-off for the EFL Cup. This match comes after Harrogate edged past Carlisle United with a narrow 1-0 win, whereas Blackburn emerged victoriously from a dramatic seven-goal encounter against Walsall.

Harrogate’s Current Form

Under the management of Simon Weaver, Harrogate Town have had an uneven start to the 2023-24 season, marking their performance with a mixed bag of three wins and three defeats across all fixtures. Such inconsistency was evident when they followed their 1-0 triumph over Doncaster Rovers with an EFL Cup victory, only to face consecutive losses against Forest Green Rovers, Tranmere Rovers, and Accrington Stanley.


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Nevertheless, Harrogate’s recent 2-0 conquest over a 10-man Morecambe team, thanks to Luke Armstrong and George Thomson’s efforts, brings hope to their supporters. Dominating the game with a 59% possession, they bombarded Morecambe’s defence with 16 shots, in contrast to their opponents’ lone effort.

Historically speaking, Harrogate’s journey in the EFL Cup has been lacklustre. Since ascending to the EFL in 2020, the team hasn’t progressed beyond the second round on three occasions. Overcoming the powerful Blackburn will be imperative if they wish to rewrite this narrative.

Blackburn’s Journey So Far

Blackburn Rovers are basking in the glow of a hard-fought 1-0 triumph against Watford. Ryan Hedges emerged as the hero, netting the singular goal. Even with a possession of just 34% and being on the receiving end of 24 shots, Blackburn’s defence stood resilient, ensuring a full takeaway from Vicarage Road.

Guided by Jon Dahl Tomasson, formerly of AC Milan and Newcastle United fame, Blackburn have accumulated seven points from 12 this season. Their notable performance was witnessed when they overturned a deficit twice to outdo Walsall 4-3 in the EFL Cup’s first round, maintaining 75% possession.

However, it’s been nearly two decades since Blackburn lifted the EFL Cup trophy in 2002. More recently, they haven’t reached the quarter-finals for the past 11 seasons.

Team Line-ups

Simon Weaver, given the success against Morecambe, may likely field an unchanged XI, with Luke Armstrong spearheading the team in a 4-2-3-1 layout. George Thomson, Samuel Folarin, and James Daly are projected to aid Armstrong, while the defensive duo of Josh Falkingham and Levi Sutton are anticipated in the midfield.

Blackburn, on the flip side, will probably miss Arnor Sigurdsson and Jack Vale due to injuries. However, Harry Pickering’s return post-red card suspension is a positive sign. Matching Harrogate’s formation, young talent Harry Leonard is predicted to lead Blackburn’s offensive charge.


1. Match Outcome: Blackburn Rovers to Win

While the romance of the cup often brings its own surprises, the divisional gulf between Harrogate Town and Blackburn Rovers is hard to overlook. The statistics make for illuminating reading. Blackburn Rovers have been plying their trade in the Championship, and they’ve shown moments of brilliance this season. In a recent away game against Watford, they faced a staggering 24 shots and only had 34% possession, yet they held firm and secured a vital three points. This resilience and ability to withstand pressure suggest that even if Harrogate Town brings their best game, Blackburn have the tools to thwart them.

Furthermore, Harrogate’s inconsistency this season is a concern. Simon Weaver’s side has alternated between wins and losses, which paints the picture of a team still searching for their rhythm. The depth and quality present in Blackburn’s ranks, managed by the experienced Jon Dahl Tomasson, are expected to be a determining factor. Given Harrogate’s previous struggle in advancing past this stage in the EFL Cup, the edge goes to Blackburn.

2. Correct Score Prediction: 2-0 to Blackburn Rovers

Considering the performances of both sides this season, a 2-0 scoreline in favour of Blackburn Rovers seems a reasonable prediction. Blackburn, having dealt with a barrage from teams like Watford and still come out on top, demonstrate a stern defensive capability. Harrogate, while commendable in their own right, have not faced Championship opposition regularly, and Blackburn’s defence might be a step too far for them to penetrate.

On the flip side, Blackburn’s attacking form, especially their recent 4-3 thriller against Walsall, suggests they’re more than capable of bagging a couple against Harrogate. A two-goal margin seems a fair reflection of Blackburn’s quality while also respecting Harrogate’s commendable defensive efforts, evidenced by their clean sheets this season.

3. Goalscorer Prediction: Ryan Hedges to Score

When assessing potential goalscorers for the game, Ryan Hedges stands out. The midfielder has been in top form for Blackburn Rovers, as highlighted by his standout BettingTips4You rating of 8.80 in the EFL Cup. This rating, the highest amongst his teammates, showcases his influence on the pitch. He also came up with the vital goal against Watford, proving he can be the difference-maker in tight contests.

Harrogate will undoubtedly be wary of Blackburn’s attacking prowess, but with multiple threats on the pitch, it might be hard for them to keep a player of Hedges’ calibre quiet for the full 90 minutes. Given his current form and apparent knack for showing up in crucial moments, it would not be surprising to see Hedges find the back of the net in this contest.


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Odds corrects at time of posting and subject to change

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Herrin Kendrick
Herrin Kendrick is a sports journalist with 10 years of experience in the sports betting industry. His work has been referenced by many sports publications over the years. Sport passionate.