Forty-two matches – eleven wins. That’s Steve Kean’s record in all competitions as Blackburn Rovers manager.
Which begs the obvious question – how’s he still in a job?
Rovers’ owners Venky’s have stayed loyal to Kean far longer than his record suggests he deserves.
The club has had some unpopular managers down the years – Paul Ince and Brian Kidd immediately spring to mind – but Kean tops the lot.
There have been some positives – the development of Junior Hoilett, Yakubu’s goals, a desire to play prettier football – but we’re in the results business, and they haven’t been good enough.
Venky’s too have come in for some flak – some would argue not enough – as the club have crashed down the Premier League.
False promises of “marquee signings” and brash statements about challenging for Europe has caused much merriment in football circles, and it’s fair to say it’s hard to be a Rovers fan right now.
The dismantling of a well-respected administration team has left Kean exposed at a time when his inexperience meant he needed all the support he could get.
Throw in the recent rumours about Rovers’ financial situation, and you wonder whether the nightmare will ever end.
Fans have ended up arguing amongst themselves as organised protests against Kean and Venky’s have been criticised and even blamed as the reason why the club is in the position it finds itself in.
Ultimately the blame lies at the door of Kean and Venky’s – and no-one else. Anyone trying to suggest otherwise needs their wires testing.
The fans can go round and round in circles discussing the merits, or otherwise, of Kean’s continued presence in a job he’d surely have lost at any other club – there really seems to be no-one listening.
The feeling remains that even if Rovers somehow climbed the table, Kean’s relationship with the fans has been soured to such an extent he’ll never truly be accepted.
From a public relations perspective, if Venky’s removed Kean and replaced him with a more experienced manager, they’d restore the fans’ faith in them.
If they continue to back their man, they simply have to invest heavily in the January transfer window – anything less and it will be clear they don’t have the club’s best interests at heart.
Either way, the next few weeks will tell us much about the direction the club is heading.
Words have proven cheap from both Kean and Venky’s – action and results are needed – quickly.
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