The Blues ramp up their pre-season preparations with an attractive friendly at home to Blackburn Rovers’ U23s on Thursday night (kick-off 7.45).
Phil Brown’s new-look squad launched their warm-up programme with a 4-0 win at Nelson last Saturday.
And the Blues’ boss is now keen to see his players get a first taste of Shawbridge on match-night as the build-up continues to the new BetVictor League season.
“This is a game to look forward to for a couple of reasons,” said Brown.
“We have trained a couple of times at Shawbridge, but without the posts up and the pitch marked out.
“So, it will be good for the players to get a proper feel for where they will be playing their football this season with the ground looking good in front of our supporters.
“And the quality of the opposition will also make it a really good challenge.
“It will be a different kind of test to the one we had on Saturday. We might not have as much of the ball and it will be interesting to see how we go about it.
“I have spelled out to the lads what we want from these pre-season games in terms of fitness and developing how we want to play.
“It was a good start on Saturday, but there’s a lot of work to do and this will be another step on the way against a really good side.”
Thursday night’s game is the Rovers’ opening pre-season fixture at U23 level at the start of a new era for Blackburn’s senior Academy side.
Damien Johnson’s promotion to the senior coaching staff has left a vacancy in charge of the U23s.
And the former Rovers’ midfielder has left an impressive legacy, with his side finishing mid-table in their first season in the top flight of Premier League 2 last season.
The Ewood Park outfit also won the Lancashire FA Senior Cup for the first time since 2011 and saw a number of young players get a first taste of senior football at Championship level.
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