VENKY’s have still got a lot of work to do to get the Blackburn public back in love with THEIR football club - the attendance on Saturday was another prime example of that.
A crowd of a little more than 14,000 for Henning Berg’s first game in charge was not a sign of the fans’ feelings about a club legend, it was a sign of the apathy that has crept in due to the owners’ mistakes.
They have finally started to take steps in the right direction with the big-money signing of Jordan Rhodes and the change in manag-ement, but there is still a long way back before Rovers feels like the supporters’ club again.
This cannot be fixed in an instant. Too much water has gone under the bridge for fans to say ‘Kean’s gone, we will all come back’.
Many still don’t trust their poultry giant owners - for obvious reasons - and it will take them a lot of time to win some back.
When fans stayed away in their thousands due to the absolute chaos caused by Venky’s over the past two years, some of them will have simply found something better to do.
Financially speaking, the crowd staying away is probably the least of Venky’s problems. The loss they are making from that each week will be a drop in the ocean to what relegation cost them.
We all know promotion back to the Premier League is absolutely vital this season.
A national journalist suggested to me that Saturday’s low crowd showed the supporters were not behind Henning Berg. I personally think that is nonsense and told him so.
Fair enough, some thought there were better appointments out there but I haven’t met any Rovers fan yet not prepared to give a guy they love a chance.
Henning Berg is not the problem, far from it. The problem lies with Venky’s recent past and the fact Rovers fans’ faith have been tested to the limit. A lot have fallen out of love with the club, and even football itself.
Some fans might never come back but others will if the product on the pitch improves and if there finally appears to be order in the boardroom.
Berg has certainly got a job on his hands but early signs suggest he is up to the task. Having a manager who speaks with honesty and who doesn’t make ridiculous statements has to help with the task of building bridges with supporters.
Most football supporters will agree there are few better feelings than a match day atmosphere when things at your club are going well.
Rovers fans have not felt that for a long time now and more importantly than that they have not felt there is anyone to trust at Ewood either. That has to change.