Sheffield Wednesday manager Danny Rohl believes his side’s reaction to losing their lead highlights their growth as the Championship strugglers stunned Blackburn 3-1.

Bailey Cadamarteri’s opener was cancelled out by Sammie Szmodics, but Marvin Johnson and Josh Windass struck in the last 12 minutes to earn the division’s bottom club only their second win of the campaign.

Wednesday had scored in stoppage time in midweek to hold leaders Leicester and their latest late show left Rohl delighted with his side’s progress.

Rohl said: “My team fight until the end and they believe in what we are doing. I’m so happy to take the points today.

“We spoke in the past about what happens if we concede a goal. When you look back to the Millwall game, we conceded a goal and then it was maybe not much energy in the group, but now you see we improve this mentally.

“After the defeat in Birmingham, now we took four points and I think this is a huge step forward.

“I try to show my players every day that we have to believe and that I’m convinced in my players.

“Maybe it’s sometimes helpful to come from some big clubs because then you have a little bit of the winning DNA in yourself and you always believe in the special things you can do.”

To compound Blackburn’s misery, manager Jon Dahl Tomasson was shown a red card following protests to the match officials over an incident involving James Hill and Callum Paterson in the build-up to Wednesday’s second goal.

Blackburn skipper Szmodics faced the post-match interviews in the manager’s absence but could not shed further light on the incident.

“I’ve not seen it,” he said.

“There’s a ref, two linesmen and a fourth official. It’s hard to speak this early after a game. I don’t want to get in any more trouble. The gaffer has got into trouble with it.

“It’s tough at the minute. You don’t know if you can go and speak to referees or not. I’ll let people look back at the goal and make their decision.”

Szmodics, who scored his seventh goal in five games, felt the scoreline was harsh on the visitors.

He said: “I don’t think it should have been a 3-1. We‘ve got back into the game with a goal and it just wasn’t to be today.

“The gaffer said at half time that we created chances. We just needed to take one and in the first half we didn’t. In the second half we got back into it, but it wasn’t our day.

“It was one of the few headers I’ve ever scored. I should have volleyed it but I went down early and managed to get enough power into it.”

“We’ll recover and get to go again.”

Championship bottom club Sheffield Wednesday recorded just their second win of the season as they beat Blackburn 3-1 at Hillsborough.

Bailey Cadamarteri, Marvin Johnson and Josh Windass were on target as the hosts ended the four-match winless run they had endured since they broke their duck against Rotherham in late October.

The in-form Sammie Szmodics had scored an equaliser for the visitors, who would have moved into the play-off places with a win.

Wednesday boss Danny Rohl handed a recall to Windass after suspension, with Johnson making way.

The Blackburn line-up showed two changes with Harry Leonard and Scott Wharton coming in while Tyrhys Dolan and Lewis Travis missed out through injury and suspension respectively.

There was an early blow for the hosts when Dominic Iorfa pulled up inside the opening minute with an injury. After receiving treatment, he was forced to go off.

Cadamarteri, the son of former Everton and Sheffield United striker Danny, opened his senior goalscoring account as he gave the Owls the lead after just five minutes.

On his second senior start, the 18-year-old produced a good near-post finish after connecting with Windass’ low cross.

Blackburn’s Callum Brittain fired off target with an effort from inside the area as the visitors tried to respond.

But Windass threatened twice in quick succession, first with a long-range shot which was well saved by by Leopold Wahlstedt and then seeing an effort blocked.

George Byers also tested Wahlstedt, with the keeper getting down low to his left to make the save.

Blackburn enjoyed a good spell towards the end of the half.

Di’Shon Bernard did well to intercept and clear when Harry Pickering played a dangerous ball across the face of goal. Hayden Carter then had a shot blocked by Bambo Diaby before Szmodics had a couple of chances, seeing a shot on the turn saved by Cameron Dawson and then having an angled effort comfortably saved.

Cadamarteri had a good chance to score soon after the interval, firing straight at Wahlstedt after receiving a pass from Barry Bannan.

Szmodics equalised in the 65th minute when he met James Hill’s cross with a far-post header to score his seventh goal in five appearances.

But Wednesday regained the lead with 12 minutes left when half-time substitute Johnson made a driving run into the area and fired hard and low into the bottom corner.

To add to Blackburn’s woes, manager Jon Dahl Tomasson was shown a red card after protesting to the match officials following the goal.

Wednesday added a third goal in added time when Szmodics’ shot was charged down and the ball fell to Windass, who ran from his own half before slotting past the advancing Wahlstedt.

Jon Dahl Tomasson praised the impact of Sammie Szmodics after his brace helped Blackburn to a pulsating 4-2 win over Birmingham.

Szmodics set Rovers on their way in the 47th minute, lobbing John Ruddy after beating the Birmingham offside trap, and his delicate finish five minutes later doubled the advantage.

When James Hill made it three, it felt like job done but Siriki Dembele hit a stunning brace of his own, curling into the top corner and firing into the roof of the net before Harry Leonard secured the points in injury time.

Szmodics has netted six in his last four and 13 for the season and after the game Tomasson praised his overall impact.

He said: “He’s flying. Not only this week, and this month, I think actually Sammie has been playing extremely well in the last year and now he’s adding a lot of goals, which we need.

“We’re extremely pleased for Sammie.

“We want to play a game, a modern way, a fluent game where you play quick, one or two touches, within one or two seconds – it’s a way of talking without using words and Sammie is one of those players that can do that.

“He can play and go, play the ball and move immediately, he has a great feeling regarding space as well and he always creates chances or when the ball finds him, he’s in a good position.

“And of course he works really hard against the ball which every team needs.

“I’m pleased he’s getting chances and scoring and even when he misses a chance, he keeps his head up.”

The result means it is one win in seven for Wayne Rooney, who felt there were positives in the Blues performance but described the goals conceded as “schoolboy”.

He said: “The goals were very poor from our point of view. I thought for large portions of the game, we were very good and caused Blackburn a lot of problems.

“The goals are schoolboy. I take responsibility for that but I think we as defenders, goalkeeper and midfielders, we need to be better because we can’t keep allowing teams to score goals like that against us.

“First five minutes of the second half, I said to the players at half-time, are so important.

“I felt first half we really quietened their crowd, and not to give them momentum and encouragement to get up and we do the opposite.

“It’s cost us the game but it’s hard to sit here and take the defeat after such a positive performance.

“We created some really good chances. We have to be more clinical because I think we’ve had 20-odd attempts at goal today and scored two. Really frustrated with the defeat.”

Sammie Szmodics celebrated his new contract by firing a second-half brace to help Blackburn to an enthralling 4-2 victory over Birmingham.

Wayne Rooney’s men had the better of the first half and Siriki Dembele clattered the woodwork but the visitors were made to pay for that profligacy.

Szmodics, who extended his Blackburn deal to 2026 on Tuesday, showed his clinical edge by lobbing John Ruddy in the 47th minute before another lofted finish five minutes later gave him his 13th of the campaign.

The game looked over when James Hill profited from a goalkeeping error to net his first Blackburn goal but Birmingham turned the game on its head.

Szmodics’ former Peterborough teammate Dembele netted a brace of his own with a classy 63rd-minute strike before a spectacular 20-yard effort gave the visitors real hope of an improbable point.

Harry Leonard’s injury-time strike made the points safe for Blackburn, who go seventh after a third win in four. Birmingham have now lost seven consecutive away games.

Birmingham weathered a fast Blackburn start and should have gone ahead in the 23rd minute when Lee Buchanan lashed over from close range.

They went closer three minutes later when Dembele tricked his way into the area on the left before unleashing an effort that rattled the crossbar.

Juninho Bacuna missed a glorious chance just before the break when he received the ball on the right but flashed a low shot beyond the far post, and Ruddy kept the scores level just before the break when he parried Callum Brittain’s curling shot behind.

Blackburn were ruthless after the break and Szmodics put them ahead in the 47th minute when he latched on to Adam Wharton’s defence-splitting pass before lobbing the stranded Ruddy.

He repeated the trick five minutes later, meeting Leonard’s clever pass before calmly lifting the ball over the goalkeeper from inside the area and it felt like game over in the 59th minute when Hill let fly with a speculative effort that Ruddy allowed to squirm beyond him and into the corner.

Birmingham came roaring back and superb skill from Dembele four minutes later saw him go past Brittain and fire clinically into the top corner.

It changed the complexion of the game and Leopold Wahlstedt made a smart near-post save from Bacuna before his brilliant reaction stop repelled Lukas Jutkiewicz’s point-blank header.

Dembele’s fifth of the season in the 78th minute, a stunning curling strike from the edge of the area that flew into the roof of the net, set up a grandstand finish.

But Leonard fired into the bottom-left corner in the second minute of injury time to secure the points as Ewood breathed a collective sigh of relief.

Jon Dahl Tomasson says his Blackburn side will “keep on dreaming” after they trounced Stoke 3-0.

A fourth successive away victory and fifth win in seven league games sees Rovers close the gap on the Championship play-offs.

Scott Wharton’s precise header handed the visitors early control and a lead which they never relinquished.

Brighton loanee Andrew Moran followed up his earlier assist with a first EFL goal to double Blackburn’s advantage and the Championship’s leading scorer Sammie Szmodics added a stoppage-time third for his 11th goal of the season.

“It was a brilliant performance and a brilliant result,” said the Blackburn boss.

“We all know how good we can play football, but our discipline and defending were extremely good and very pleasing.

“We frustrated Stoke a lot; the defending, attitude and spirit were all great and we showed a high level of discipline for 90 minutes.

“They were not able to take a chance and when they came into the final third, the stop sign was there and we defended like warriors.

“We’re taking our chances too; if you looked at all our performances this season, we could have won every game.

“We’re the team in the league who create the most chances and today we took our chances really well.

“We needed that break to recharge their heads and bodies, and you can hear how happy our fans are in the end and that says everything.

“We try to perform the best we can; we know we’re a young squad and that sometimes we’re lacking experience.

“Our CEO Steve Waggott said our target first of all was to stay in the league after the cutting of the budget.

“We’re allowed to dream of course and the fans, players and I will keep on dreaming about something big.”

It was a dismal afternoon for Stoke as their five-match unbeaten run was ended with a whimper.

The Potters, who had not conceded in over seven hours prior to the tie, looked fragile defensively and failed to convert their possession into chances.

“I don’t think the game was a 3-0 game,” Alex Neil said.

“For the first 15 minutes, they caused us an issue but after we fixed it, there wasn’t a problem from that point.

“The first goal is so disappointing because they’ve only scored one goal from a corner this season.

“After 15 minutes, I thought we started to take control of the game but the biggest difference was that they put the ball in the net and we didn’t.

“And the third goal makes the scoreline look much worse than what it actually was.

“They’ll be frustrated in the fact that I don’t think they’ll feel that they were outplayed. It was arguably just three or four moments that we didn’t deal with. We just didn’t defend those moments well enough.

“It’s a sore one because there’s been a lot of good things in the last five games.

“Today, you don’t want to send the fans home frustrated, disappointed and angry and ultimately that’ll be the case.”

Blackburn secured a fourth successive away league victory with a 3-0 drubbing of Stoke.

Scott Wharton’s fourth-minute header – his first Championship strike since October 2022 – handed Rovers an early lead which they never relinquished.

Brighton loanee Andrew Moran added a goal to his earlier assist to spark a late flurry of action.

And the league’s leading marksman Sammie Szmodics rounded off a comprehensive win in stoppage time with his 11th goal of the campaign.

It was a fifth victory in seven league games for Jon Dahl Tomasson’s side while the Potters, who had not conceded in over seven hours of football before the tie, endured a miserable afternoon as their five-match unbeaten run was ended.

Despite their impressive recent defensive record, the hosts could have fallen behind with barely a minute on the stopwatch. Szmodics sprung the offside trap and lifted an effort over Jack Bonham only for it to drop wide of the target.

The early warning sign was not heeded by Stoke, whose hope for a fifth consecutive clean sheet was ended a matter of moments later. A Moran corner was met by the towering Wharton, with his precise header off the woodwork giving Bonham no chance.

A frantic start to the fixture ensued with the Potters twice going close to producing an immediate response.

Daniel Johnson’s low drilled strike was flipped wide by keeper Leopold Wahlstedt before Enda Stevens’ cross was nearly converted by both Dwight Gayle and Luke McNally.

And Stoke continued in their pursuit of a leveller with South Korean youngster Bae Jun-ho trying his luck with a header and an effort from outside the box.

But again, the hosts looked uncharacteristically fragile defensively with Szmodics racing in on goal before prodding narrowly wide.

The in-form forward had another opportunity to double Blackburn’s advantage shortly before the interval, but his mazy run was halted by Bonham.

Alex Neil’s half-time instructions nearly prompted an instant reply after the restart, but an unmarked Wouter Burger headed over the target.

The introduction of Ryan Mmaee, Tyrese Campbell and Wesley tried to inspire a clinical edge, but still the Potters failed to craft a clear sight at goal.

Rovers capitalised with Bonham parrying Jake Garrett’s harmless effort directly into Moran’s path, with the 20-year-old converting on the rebound.

And Blackburn were not finished there as Szmodics raced through on goal, rounded Bonham and converted to add the cherry on top of a fine display.

It brings up four straight away wins in the second tier for the visitors for the first time since 2000-01 – a year in which they won promotion to the Premier League.

Ryan Lowe lauded Preston’s ‘never-say-die attitude’ after grabbing a late Lancashire derby winner at Blackburn.

In a frenetic encounter, North End rode their luck and were grateful Arnor Sigurdsson’s volley came back off the crossbar before skipper Alan Browne gave Preston the lead with a terrific left-foot finish.

Rovers hit the woodwork again before half-time and equalised just after through Sammie Szmodics’ 10th Championship goal this season.

It felt as though the hosts would go on to win but Duane Holmes struck a post for Preston, who dramatically secured a 2-1 victory when Liam Lindsay’s low header gave them a 90th-minute winner.

Preston are fourth after a second consecutive win at Ewood Park and Lowe felt his side gave ‘everything’.

He said: “When you win derbies, you’re always going to enjoy it.

“I thought the lads were fantastic. They had to deal with large parts of their pressure and how they play. They’re a good footballing team but we withstood all that.

“Disappointed with the goal but again, the lads showed that real character and desire, never-say-die attitude. To score the winner in front of our fans, it probably can’t get much better.

“The players gave us everything. The players coming on the pitch, the players starting, the bench behind. They’re fantastic, and that’s what I say to them all the time.

“We are a strong, resolute team that can overpower some teams. I think you see that with the goal. They give us everything, and as long as they keep giving me everything, and the staff, and the football club, then we’ll win a lot of games.

Blackburn have lost four of their last five at home and though manager Jon Dahl Tomasson felt defeat was harsh, he accepted Rovers did not create ‘clear’ chances.

He said: “We are of course extremely disappointed to lose the game. I don’t think we deserved to lose the game.

“If you look at the overall performance, we were the better team, created chances, more than the opponent. We were probably lacking a bit of clear chances in the final third, we were missing runs in behind. When we did that, we created chances immediately.

“We know Preston are extremely good at passing long, winning second balls, crossing, set-plays and transition. There were two occasions where we didn’t deal with those and it cost two goals.

“This young group gave everything so (I’m) disappointed to concede that late in the game.

“You need to deal better with those situations. I think with the possession we had, we should probably have created a little bit more clear chances in my opinion. But still there were plenty of good opportunities to win this game.”

Liam Lindsay scored a 90th-minute winner to give Preston a dramatic 2-1 derby victory at Blackburn.

An enthralling encounter looked destined to end all square after Alan Browne’s sumptuous first-half finish was cancelled out by Sammie Szmodics’ 10th of the campaign minutes after the restart.

After soaking up Blackburn’s pressure, the Lilywhites grabbed a late winner when Lindsay stooped to head home his third of the season and send Ryan Lowe’s men up to fourth in the Championship, ending a run of three consecutive away defeats.

The goals barely tell the story of a pulsating Lancashire derby which saw Blackburn rattle the woodwork twice in the first half, through Arnor Sigurdsson and Andrew Moran, while Duane Holmes did the same for Preston in the second half.

Blackburn did not work Freddie Woodman enough despite their dominance, and are four points outside the play-offs.

Preston missed a superb early chance when Milutin Osmajic’s cross found Holmes at the far post but he shot tamely and Callum Brittain blocked.

The hosts were on top though and were agonisingly close to taking a 20th-minute lead when Tyrhys Dolan clipped a cross that found Sigurdsson, whose volley crashed off the crossbar before Preston cleared.

Will Keane sent a free header over the bar soon after but the visitors did take the lead in the 35th minute after a moment of real class. Brad Potts’ crossfield ball found Browne who controlled exquisitely before rifling a left-foot shot into the roof of the net.

Blackburn fought back though and twice went close before the break through Moran, who saw a 44th-minute shot superbly blocked by Potts before going even closer a minute later when Dolan’s cushioned pass found him on the edge of the area but the Irishman hammered against the crossbar.

They were deservedly level in the 49th minute though and Moran was the architect, chipping a delightful ball for the onrushing Szmodics who controlled with his chest and calmly slotted beyond Woodman.

Blackburn maintained the pressure and with vociferous support behind them, went close again in the 55th minute when Szmodics was sent clear down the left but this time Woodman spread himself and made the save.

The game was inches from swinging back Preston’s way just after the hour when Potts’ deflected cross fell for Holmes, whose first-time shot clattered the near post and rolled along the goal before being cleared.

Woodman had to be alert four minutes from time to repel Brittain’s near-post shot and it proved crucial as Preston struck right at the death. Ben Whiteman curled in a perfect cross and Lindsay stole in ahead of his marker to bullet a header beyond Leo Wahlstedt and send the 6,000 visiting fans wild.

Norwich head coach David Wagner vowed to battle on after seeing his side’s poor form continue with a 3-1 home defeat at the hands of Blackburn.

The Canaries have now lost eight games out of 10 in all competitions, slipping to 17th in the Championship as a result after a bright start to the campaign.

“If I get the chance I will work to turn this around but I am not the right person to ask (about my future),” he said.

“I take responsibility, for sure, because I am the manager of this team, and today wasn’t good enough, I know that, and the longer this run goes on the more difficult it gets.

“But this squad proved what it’s capable of early in the season and as I said I am ready to work hard to put things right.”

Wagner, who confirmed he would not be resigning, added: “I thought we actually started quite well, winning the ball in dangerous positions, but after that our press wasn’t right and they punished us.

“At 3-0 we had a mountain to climb. I cannot fault the effort of the lads but we were not clinical enough, we didn’t take the good chances we created.”

Norwich were punished for a slow start as a slick Blackburn side scored twice in the first 15 minutes at Carrow Road.

A simple pass inside from Joe Rankin-Costello put Tyrhys Dolan in to run through and smash the ball high into the roof of the net and then Andrew Moran slid Sammie Szmodics in to make it two.

It was all too easy for Blackburn, with the home fans making their discontent clear, and four minutes after the restart it got even bleaker for the hosts as Szmodics got his second of the game.

Dolan did well to pick out an unmarked Moran on the right and his low cross was tapped in at the back post by Rovers’ top scorer, who got the benefit of a tight offside call.

The visitors were quickly reduced to 10 men when Scott Wharton saw red for a professional foul on Onel Hernandez, but Norwich had to wait until the second minute of injury time to pull one back from Gabriel Sara, who was in the right place to pounce on a loose ball in the area.

Blackburn boss Jon Dahl Tomasson was understandably pleased with his side’s comfortable win.

“I thought it was an excellent win and performance – we played at a very high level for long periods,” he said.

“Norwich are going through a difficult spell at the moment but they are still a good team with good players and it was important we got on the front foot immediately. We scored two good goals and had other good chances and it could easily have been 4-0 at half-time.

“We stuck to our principles, with plenty of one and two-touch football, and I thought we played some really good stuff at times.

“We scored another well-worked goal in the second half and then got the red card, which obviously affected the game.

“After that I thought we defended like lions to keep them out, showing great team spirit, which was another positive from our young team.

“We put in a good show at Chelsea and we have followed that up today with another good performance, which is very pleasing. We can now enjoy this and then prepare for the derby against Preston on Friday.”

Norwich’s slump continued as they fell to a painful 3-1 defeat at the hands of 10-man Blackburn at Carrow Road.

The Canaries have now lost eight times in 10 games in all competitions, slipping to 17th in the Championship, and there were calls for head coach David Wagner to go during another below-par showing.

Blackburn scored twice in the opening 15 minutes through Tyrhys Dolan and Sammie Szmodics to take control, and a second from Szmodics early in the second half ended the game as a contest, even through Rovers’ Scott Wharton was sent off shortly afterwards.

Norwich got one back in injury time through Gabriel Sara, but it was no more than a consolation for the struggling hosts.

The Canaries were well off the pace in the early stages and were duly punished as the visitors scored two well-taken goals.

At times a slick Rovers side were able to play their way through a nervous looking City backline at will and it was no surprise when they took the lead after eight minutes with a goal of classic simplicity.

Joe Rankin-Costello found himself in some space on the right and slid the ball infield to Dolan who burst into the box before producing an emphatic finish into the roof of the net.

It got worse for the hosts in the 15th minute when Rovers added a second. Their defence was again caught square as Andrew Moran put Szmodics in and the striker buried an unstoppable low shot into the bottom corner to make it two.

There were chants of ‘You’re getting sacked in the morning’ from the Norwich fans when that one went in, with head coach Wagner already under pressure after his side’s poor run of form.

The Canaries did improve as the half wore on, and Ui Jo Hwang and Marcelino Nunez both got decent efforts of target before Onel Hernandez fired just wide from the edge of the area after being fed by Jack Stacey.

But overall it was still a poor first-half showing, and the second started in similar fashion for the Canaries as they shipped another soft goal four minutes after the restart.

This time Dolan had all the time in the world to clip a ball out to an unmarked Moran on the right and crossed low for Szmodics to tap in at the far post, with the Rovers top scorer getting the benefit of a tight offside call.

Norwich desperately needed a boost at that point and got one a few minutes later when Wharton was red-carded after bringing down Hernandez as the Cuban raced through on goal, although the subsequent free-kick from Nunez was comfortably gathered by Leopold Wahlstedt.

Wagner made a quadruple substitution on the hour mark in an attempt to change the course of the game and one of them, Christian Fassnacht, brought an excellent reaction save out of the Rovers keeper with a powerful back-post header.

Norwich were now firmly on the front foot, with Nunez blasting just wide and Sara seeing a goal-bound shot well blocked and they finally reduced the arrears in the second minute of injury time.

Wahlstedt could only parry a low cross from Przemyslaw Placheta and it fell nicely for Sara to side-foot home from just outside the six-yard box.

Chelsea boss Mauricio Pochettino is taking a “careful” approach with captain Reece James, who started a match for just the second time this season in the Blues’ 2-0 Carabao Cup victory over Blackburn.

James, who has been making his way back to full fitness after sustaining a hamstring issue in August, played 61 minutes of Wednesday’s tie before he was swapped for Malo Gusto.

Benoit Badiashile netted the opener in his first appearance this season, while Raheem Sterling added a second after the break to book the Blues a quarter-final clash with Newcastle.

Pochettino said: “The plan was to check at half-time how (James) was feeling, and after 15 minutes he starts to feel tired and we’re checking from the second half, and we need to be careful how we manage him.

“We decide to make the change because I think it is important now, the progression, and being careful about not going back, sometimes (you) play 90 minutes and maybe take some risks, but we need to avoid this.

“It’s true that we cannot 100 per cent avoid risk, but the plan is to go little by little.”

Badiashile, who had not appeared for Chelsea since May, broke the deadlock on the half-hour mark after Leopold Wahlstedt’s save deflected favourably into his path.

Both sides had penalty shouts go unanswered by referee Tim Robinson before the break, including a potential handball on Conor Gallagher that could have swung momentum in the visitors’ favour, but Sterling’s top-corner strike made it a comfortable second half for the hosts.

Blackburn had their chances – Harry Leonard firing just wide moments after the interval and substitute Arnor Sigurdsson coming close in stoppage time – but never looked close to a comeback in front of the 3,000 fans who had made the trip south.

Jon Dahl Tomasson was convinced his Rovers side should have been awarded a spot-kick, but was pleased by how well his youthful side responded to their top-flight opposition.

The Danish boss, who believes cup football is “extremely important” said: “It was a great challenge, and I think our fans will be proud of this young Rovers team playing against a top team in Europe.

“The millionaires from the Premier League against the young guns from the Championship and do a challenge and an effort like this, I think the boys will learn a lot from this game.

“When you play at this level you need to make a decision quite quick, the intensity is high, the decision-making needs to be right and I thought actually we had some great attacks on the ball as well.

“I’m sure this young group will take a lot from this game.”

Benoit Badiashile scored the opening goal as he made his first appearance of the season in Chelsea’s 2-0 Carabao Cup victory over Blackburn at Stamford Bridge.

The France defender had not started a Blues match since he was injured in their draw with Nottingham Forest in May and got himself involved at both ends of the pitch in a game that also saw Reece James return to the starting XI.

Raheem Sterling fired home after the break, and while the visitors had defended well, they never looked close to coming back into the contest.

Chelsea have now reached their 24th quarter-final in 33 attempts, and are one step closer to lifting a first League Cup since 2015, when Blues boss Mauricio Pochettino was in charge of runners-up Tottenham.

Backburn had not played a League Cup contest at Stamford Bridge in 26 years and over 3,000 supporters made the trip, hoping to do one better than they did in 1997 when Rovers were knocked out after a penalty shootout.

There was little excitement inside the opening exchanges, which, save for two wasted corners for the hosts and Dilan Markanday’s left-footed effort running wide, was largely characterised by two sides simply trying find an early footing.

It took just over 15 minutes for Chelsea to finally test Leopold Wahlstedt through a drilled effort from James which the Swedish goalkeeper just managed to get enough of his body in the way to make the stop.

Badiashile did well to clear away a Blackburn chance before James tried again, this time with a low effort from distance before Enzo Fernandez forced Wahlstedt into a low save at the right post.

Blackburn continued to frustrate the Blues, winning back possession inside the penalty area, while Wahlstedt was able to palm away Conor Gallagher’s dangerous cross, but the rebound somehow sailed between a sea of bodies.

It eventually landed at the feet of the fortunate Badiashile, who dutifully finished to open the scoring after 30 minutes of a half that also saw penalty shouts from both sides brushed aside by referee Tim Robinson.

Harry Leonard fired inches wide of the right post to start off the second half, while Fernandez could only send his next effort straight into the arms of Wahlstedt, who would soon have no chance of stopping Chelsea’s second.

After some good work by Cole Palmer to win the ball deep inside Blackburn’s half, Sterling latched on to the ball at the edge of the area and powered a shot into the top right.

Both managers took the opportunity to make changes, and the visitors were prevented from conceding a quick third when Palmer’s effort took a dangerous deflection off James Hill and whizzed toward the goal before Blackburn were saved by the left post.

Chelsea pushed for a third with both Gallagher and Sterling sending efforts across the face of goal as the clock wound down on Blackburn’s cup campaign, though not before substitute Arnor Sigurdsson came close to firing in a stoppage-time consolation.

Mauricio Pochettino called for Chelsea’s fans to believe and show trust in his side after Saturday’s 2-0 defeat to Brentford left them in the bottom half of the Premier League table.

The Stamford Bridge crowd booed Chelsea off at full-time against the Bees after a third home defeat piled pressure on Pochettino.

The Chelsea boss understands the supporters’ frustration and suggested other reasons behind their inconsistent performances.

Speaking ahead of Chelsea’s Carabao Cup last-16 clash against Blackburn on Wednesday, Pochettino said: “I think they need to be with us and I know it’s difficult to keep your feelings and it’s normal.

“The fans want to win and are frustrated and they show emotion but the message is to believe and to show trust in us and for sure it’s about the process of trusting and believing.

“There are so many details, what has happened (which contributed to Chelsea’s form) and you always need some luck.

“One of the situations that happened is the injury of Christopher Nkunku – he is a player we signed with an objective to provide the team and to help put us in a different position.

“In some games we created chances and did not score, we did not get what we deserved. I think we deserve more if we talk about our performance. We need to be more aggressive.

“In the last game we created chances and we were better than Brentford who blocked very low.

“It’s not enough and we need to criticise ourselves at the moment.”

A Carabao Cup trophy would soften the blow of Chelsea’s poor start to the 2023-24 campaign.

Pochettino highlighted the importance of both the Carabao Cup and FA Cup and insisted that he will field a strong team in a bid to advance to the quarter-finals.

He added: “It’s really important. The FA Cup and the Carabao Cup are really important for us and tomorrow (against Blackburn) we will play with our best team, some players need a rest after Saturday’s game so we cannot take risks.”

Reece James has come off the bench in recent weeks as part of his recovery from a hamstring injury he sustained in August.

And Pochettino confirmed the Blues skipper will start at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday.

He said: “I can confirm he is going to start. The captain is ready, which is good for the team and good for him to start from the beginning of the game and we will check on him and see how he’ll perform.”

Michael Duff hailed Swansea’s “well earned” 1-0 win at Blackburn that gave them a first victory at Ewood Park in 52 years.

The Swans, who came into the game having suffered back-to-back defeats, ended their hoodoo through Liam Cullen’s fine 28th-minute curling strike, capping an outstanding month for the forward who won his first Welsh cap earlier in October.

Swansea had to show all sides of their character, creating chances when in the ascendency and digging in defensively at the start and end of the encounter when they were under severe pressure.

The win was particularly satisfying for former Burnley defender Duff, whose Swansea team have won five of their last seven games, and he was pleased with how his side responded to Blackburn’s start.

He said: “I think they started the game well. No getting away from that. The first five to 10 minutes they started really well, so we tweaked a couple of things in the press and I think for the next 50-55 minutes, we dominated the game.

“Thought we played out, played through them. Probably should have been 2-0 or 3-0 up at that point.

“We’ve had a goal disallowed which is offside, we’ve had another goal disallowed which is onside.

“Then, it’s human element. The lads are probably thinking the game should be out of sight now and it’s not, and they’re a good team.

“It was a case of trying to do the other side of the game well, whilst trying to pick them off on the counter attack.

“People put their bodies on their line, defended, made blocks when they had to. For all their opportunities, Carl (Rushworth) has not really made a brilliant save.

“It definitely wasn’t comfortable but it was a well-earned win in the end.”

Blackburn, who have lost three of their last four home league games, saw Callum Brittain and Harry Leonard miss glorious opportunities.

Rovers boss Jon Dahl Tomasson said: “One of those days. We are of course extremely disappointed.

“We actually began the game really well and why we were not in front in first minute, we still don’t know it.

“I think we started really well, the first 20-25 minutes. After that, defensively there was a bit of distance in the team which was not good enough. We were sloppy sometimes on the ball.

“In the second half, I think we were the better team, creating plenty of chances and good moments to win the game.

“But (it was) one of those days when we are not scoring.

“We shouldn’t forget this young team have won three games on the bounce. There will be those days as well, we all know that. But of course, disappointed with the result.

“I think Swansea are really good at killing the game, killing the time as well. Every free-kick, every time the ball went out, it took ages. They did it really well and it’s difficult to get momentum.”

Liam Cullen scored the only goal as Swansea beat Blackburn 1-0 for their first Ewood Park victory since 1971.

The Welshman’s second of the season – a sumptuous curling strike in the 28th minute – was the perfect response to a fast Rovers start that saw Callum Brittain and Sammie Szmodics both spurn chances to put the hosts ahead.

Swansea’s Jamie Paterson should have profited from a defensive lapse early in the second half but was denied by Leo Wahlstedt and they had to show their character to weather a late Rovers storm that saw substitute Harry Leonard twice miss glorious chances.

The visitors held on to win their third consecutive game on the road and climb up to 13th, a place and a point behind Blackburn who will rue the chances missed at either end of this encounter.

Rovers missed a gilt-edged opportunity in the first minute when Tyrhys Dolan’s left-wing cross fell perfectly to Brittain six yards out but he steered the ball beyond the post.

Their dominance continued and Szmodics almost finished off a well-worked corner but though his shot beat Carl Rushworth, Jamal Lowe brilliantly cleared off the line.

Swansea looked in danger of being overrun but Cullen flashed one wide from the right soon after, before Lowe twice had the ball in the net only to be denied both times by the offside flag.

There was no reprieve in the 28th minute though as Swansea moved the ball brilliantly to Cullen on the right who cut back on to his left foot before whipping a superb strike into the far corner from 20 yards.

The visitors had a further sight of goal just before the break when they worked the ball to Jerry Yates just outside the area but his shot did not have the power to trouble Wahlstedt.

Rovers made alterations at half-time and one of the substitutes, Andrew Moran, set Szmodics up in the 54th minute but he blazed over.

Swansea should have made doubled their advantage two minutes later when Scott Wharton gifted the ball to Paterson on the edge of his own area but Wahlstedt produced a stunning save with his outstretched leg to divert behind.

The hosts looked the more dangerous as the game wore on and Leonard’s run and cross found Szmodics whose first-time strike was well held by Rushworth.

Leonard missed an even better chance in the 75th minute when Adam Wharton’s pass set him clear but he hammered wide of the left post.

A frantic finish saw Harry Darling’s 82nd-minute header cleared by Harry Pickering, before Blackburn passed up another great opportunity when Leonard met James Hill’s 90th-minute cross perfectly only to power his header straight at the grateful Rushworth.

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