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Like any manager arriving midway through the first part of this season, Mark Hughes may well have been counting the days until he was allowed to bring in his own players.
And yet, for 34 minutes as Blackburn Rovers showed spirit and quality to get earn a 3-3 draw against Birmingham that had looked all over at half-time, Hughes may well have been wondering if the player that will have the biggest impact on his early tenure at the club is already numbered within his squad.