Downing left Boro at the end of his contract this summer. Jonathan Woodgate suggested he wanted the player to stay at the Riverside Stadium, but Blackburn instead signed him on a free transfer.
After a slow start to the season, Rovers have now picked up successive 1-0 victories as they claimed all three points against Hull City at the KCOM Stadium on Tuesday evening.
Dereck Williams scored the only goal of the game after Hull’s Jarrod Bowen saw a penalty saved. The defender will rightfully collect the plaudits, but it was Downing who really shone for the visitors.
Stewart Downing rolled back the years this evening, cracking performance. Special shout out to Cunningham and Williams at the back. Solid performance for the mighty Rovers. Need to see Nyambe at right back but will take the win tonight #Rovers #BRFC— Abid Hussain (@ArtyAbid) August 20, 2019
I think a lot on the BRFCS forum may need to hold their hands up on Downing and Johnson. Downing has the engine of a 30 year old while Johnson is adding control and when needed nastiness to our engine. Still early days, but he could be our player of the season— Alex Lai (@alexlai84) August 20, 2019
I was a bit unsure what he signed not gonna lie..... but what an absolute baller— shaun slater (@shaunslater91i1) August 21, 2019
Downing started further up the pitch than usual, playing on the left side of a front three.
Blackburn boss Tony Mowbray previously played him in a deeper role, but the tactical switch allowed the 35-year-old to cause damage in the final third and he tormented Hull’s defence throughout.
Downing racked up a whopping six key passes, more than the rest of his teammates combined. His set-piece led to Williams’ only goal of the game, while the former Boro man almost scored himself as he hit the woodwork.
Mowbray signed both Downing from Middlesbrough and Bradley Johnson from Derby County to add more experience to the side. Evidence so far suggests Rovers’ Championship rivals have missed their former players.
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