Eddie Nolan says that it will be a very different Blackburn Rovers he will be returning to this weekend. The Irishman learned his trade at Ewood Park under then boss Mark Hughes after being spotted by the Lancashire club whilst playing in his native country and although he made just the one appearance as a promising teenager for the club, the Crewe defender only has extremely fond memories of his time there.
Nolan, now 29, made his only appearance for Rovers in a Europa League group game against AS Nancy back in 2006. He replaced the injured Andy Todd early on but he helped them keep a clean-sheet before Lucas Neill struck a winner in the 90th minute.
Ahead of our FA Cup tie at Ewood Park, Eddie told iFollow The Alex: “I have been back a couple of times since I left and Blackpool lost there in the FA Cup last season. I don’t think there is a member of staff still there from my time there, so it is all new faces.
“It is such a shame what happened to the club. They are a massive club and should still be a Premier League club. There are not that many clubs that have won the Premier League and when I was there they had players like Benni McCarthy.
“I really enjoyed my time there. It is a great club and I am eternally grateful to them for giving me that opportunity. It was no brainer to come over from Ireland. There were a couple of lads from Ireland already there so it made it easier.
“I loved my time there and I learned my trade there. I had four years and it is such a shame that the club has gone into League One. It is very sad but hopefully they have a manager who has gone in there and steadied the ship and hopefully one day they can get back in the top flight.”