Pundit outlines key factor as to why Blackburn star is thriving this season

Date published: Wednesday 3rd November 2021 9:56 - Ben Rooth

Blackburn Rovers' Ben Brereton Diaz scores his hat-trick during the Sky Bet Championship match at Ewood Park.

Sky Sports pundit Stewart Downing has indicated that Ben Brereton Diaz’s sizzling form could be down to when no fans were allowed in stadiums. 

The Chilean has scored 12 goals in 16 Championship outings this campaign. The 22-year-old has been an incredible threat for Tony Mowbray’s men and his national side. In Chile’s recent World Cup qualification matches, Diaz netted against Venezuela and a vital goal against Paraguay.

Playing with the talisman for two years, Downing outlined that it helped the frontman when crowds weren’t allowed to attend games, during the pandemic.

Speaking on air, Downing said: “He was short on confidence I think.

“I think the biggest thing for him in the last 18 months is the no crowds being there has took the pressure off, if I’m honest, I think he’s thrived off that.”

Diaz managed only eight league goals during Downing’s two-year stint at the club.

The 37-year-old is delighted for his former teammate, who was close to being sent out on loan before his upturn in form.

“It’s an outstanding story isn’t it,” said Downing. “He was going on loan to Holland, I think it was Den Haag at the time.

“I think his goals, I’m looking at him now and he’s playing with a smile on his face.

“He’s full of confidence and to be honest he’s their main man at the minute.”

Due to his impressive goal tally, Diaz is attracting interest from a host of clubs. 

Mowbray faces the possibility of losing his forward on a free transfer at the end of this campaign. Despite being out of contract in the summer, the frontman does have a possible one-year extension in his contract.

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La Roja call for Brereton Diaz

Chile have once again called up Ben Brereton Diaz for two huge World Cup qualifiers later this month.

Facing Paraguay and Ecuador in a double-header, Diaz’s national team are three points away from Uruguay, who sit in fifth. 

The top four teams advance to the World Cup finals, whilst the fifth-placed team enters an inter-confederation play-off for a World Cup spot.

Tow massive games for Martin Lasarte’s men as they’ll be eyeing up the automatic qualification places.

The Rovers striker will be looking to add to the two goals he scored during the last international break. He’ll fly to South America after his side’s game against Sheffield United on Saturday.

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