As Blackburn embark on their Championship campaign, the club’s fans will take some heart from the fact that the squad has been bolstered this summer. However, looking at owners’ Venky’s treatment of manager Steve Kean and approach in the transfer market raises some huge question marks, and further proves that the Indian conglomerate have no idea how to run a football club.
Despite some plucky performances and results at times last season, Rovers looked like a relegation contender for the majority of the campaign, and in the end were demoted to the second-tier of English football. The dramatic downturn in the team’s fortunes since the harsh sacking of Sam Allardyce back in December 2010 has been startling, with the club’s fans pinning the blame on the owners and Steve Kean.
The Scottish coach was a surprise selection to replace Allardyce given his inexperience, and has had to face a brunt of abuse from the Ewood Park faithful. Protests to have Kean sacked and constant dissatisfaction from the fans throughout 2011-12 saw the coach as a favourite to be axed, but Venky’s stood by their man, even after relegation.
A bit of loyalty in football can be admired, but after their continued backing of Kean, Venky’s have completely changed their approach. New director of football Shebby Singh has come out and stated that Kean will be sacked if Rovers lose three games in a row this term. Why stand by an inexperienced and under-fire manager for an entire campaign, which results in relegation, and then sack him three games later?
In the transfer market Venky’s actions again have been strange. Rovers were in big trouble at the turn of the year, and needed investment in new players in the January transfer market to stand a chance of avoiding the drop. However, the owners parted less than £2 million to bring little-known Anthony Modeste, Bradley Orr and Marcus Olsson to Ewood. Now that the side have been demoted the owners have invested to bring the likes of Danny Murphy, Nuno Gomes, Dickson Etuhu and Leon Best to Lancashire. Although the Rovers fans will welcome the investment, it is six months too late as the club are stuck in the quagmire of the Championship.
Blackburn have a great chance of bouncing straight back to the top flight at the first time of asking due to the quality in their squad comparative to other sides in the Championship, but it is clear that the club are being mismanaged. No wonder the protests and frustration continue, however Rovers fans should aim their anger at inept owners rather than an inexperienced trainer.
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