Blackburn fans want Kean sacked
Published 09/09/2011 | 08:47
Blackburn Rovers supporters have sent an open letter to the club owners, Venky’s, pleading with them to communicate better with fans and to consider replacing Steve Kean as manager.
Rovers' record under Kean has been less than impressive, bringing six wins, seven draws and 13 defeats in 26 games, stirring discontent on the terraces of Ewood Park.
Yet Venky’s have been consistently supportive of Kean and backed him in the transfer window, bringing in two good signings in Scott Dann and David Goodwillie.
Any positivity engendered by their arrival might dissipate if Rovers slip up on Sunday at Fulham, where Kean used to be assistant manager to Chris Coleman.
"The fans were willing to give Steve Kean a chance and were very open-minded about an appointment of a very inexperienced manager, somebody who had never managed a professional football team in his life,’’ the group of Blackburn season-ticket-holders said in their letter to the Venky’s, claiming to represent 4,000 fans.
Some would like to see Kean replaced by Mark Hughes, the former Blackburn manager who is currently out of work.
"The sense that any game was winnable under Mark Hughes has been replaced by the sense of expecting defeat against any team either home or away that now exists under Kean,’’ continued the letter.
"There are odd team line-ups where under-performing players such as Jason Roberts and Michel Salgado continue to play whereas goalscorers Mauro Formica and David Goodwillie drop to the bench.
"A very real fear for the future is now setting on Rovers fans. Numbers speak louder then words. More than 1,000 season tickets down on last season?"
Aware of the unrest, Venky’s are attempting to be more hands-on at Ewood, and have moved family representatives from India to Lancashire, but supporters want more dialogue.
"There is a growing frustration that the fans don’t believe they have been listened to by the owners,’’ the supporters added.
How much the fans’ letter represents the majority view is unclear, although the sounds of dissatisfaction at Ewood have been heard.
Blackburn fans are not known for any militancy and clearly Venky’s have many questions to answer about the operation of the team and club.
"In all of my years following the Rovers I have never known things to be as bad as they are at the club right now, not even when we were relegated,’’ writes a 21-year-old Blackburn fan in one of a series of individual messages to Venky’s attached to the open letter.
"Back then we had a diehard owner [Jack Walker] who loved Blackburn Rovers and wise heads behind the scenes such as John Williams [the then chairman] who could all steer the club in the right direction.
"It seems there is nothing us fans can do about it, and it hurts."
The open letter concludes: "As you can tell, we are passionate football fans. We love our club. Some fans are angry, some are depressed about the current situation and some are desperate for change.
"Listen to our words, our chants, our unhappiness."
A demonstration is being planned by Blackburn fans for the home against Arsenal on Sept 17.