Will Kean (above) get the chance to point Blackburn in the right direction?
By Laurie Fitzgerald
In Premier League terms, it feels like an eternity since a potential managerial casualty has been discussed. Yet another one was speculated to be round the corner at Blackburn Rovers.
Reports over the weekend suggest that manager Steve Kean is set to face talks with the club’s owners Venky’s Limited following just four wins from 15 games.
Their 3-2 defeat at Fulham on Saturday leaves the Lancashire side just two points from the bottom three, having gone from mid-table security to being dragged into a relegation dogfight.
Venky’s chairperson Anuradha Desai came out yesterday and vehemently denied the claims, stating, “He will continue in his present position. There is no question of the manager being changed.”
While questions about Kean being the right man for the job are understandable, what can be queried is why the owners decided that Kean was the right man in the first place.
Many people were bemused when just over three weeks after completing their £43 million takeover, Venky’s sacked Sam Allardyce when Rovers were 13th in the table but not within any severe relegation trouble.
This was despite the fact that a day after their takeover, Desai had said of the former Bolton manager,
“We want results and Sam has taken up the challenge. He deserves a chance.” That chance consisted of 25 days.
The reason given for removing Allardyce was so that the new owners could realise their “wider plans and ambitions for the club.”
Part of these wider plans was supposedly to increase the profile of the club in Asia and find a profitable market there – so surely big-name signings and a big-name appointment were in store?
This turned out not to be the case, with 43 year-old Kean given the job on a temporary basis, then given the role permanently when he signed a two and a half-year deal in January.
As for signings, despite a well-publicised attempt to sign Ronaldinho that failed to come off, the owners had already indicated during Allardyce’s reign that big funds weren’t available.
“We won’t need to buy expensive players, we can always lease them.” Desai said. But how would getting good players in on loan work in the long-term for the club?
Despite an encouraging start, results under Kean have gradually got worse. However, the owners were so confident in their original decision that when he was given this long-term deal, Desai claimed he was unsackable.
She said, “Steve Kean will be safe in his job for the duration of that contract, whatever happens.”
Well what has happened since that very secure appointment is four defeats from their last six league games. Suddenly, the unsackable Kean has seen his job come under scrutiny.
Desai and her board have given the former first team coach the backing he needs in the short-term, bearing in mind that uncertainty will only benefit Rovers’ relegation rivals.
But it would be nice for the Blackburn supporters if those that have pledged to take the club forward go on to back their claims with their actions in the long-term; making Blackburn a better football club for the supporters, or using the club as a cheap option to make a considerable profit from?
So what do you think? Blackburn fans, are you concerned with what the new owners are doing? Does Kean deserve to have his job at Ewood Park questioned? Let us know your thoughts