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Kean: I'll win over Blackburn Rovers fans with new-look team
STEVE Kean has insisted that Blackburn Rovers’ new look team will soon start to ease fans’ concerns as he prepares to hand debuts to three players at Fulham tomorrow.
Rovers have lost their opening three games of the Premier League season and Kean’s own position as boss has become a subject of debate once more after a number of supporters opted to send an open letter to owners Venky’s to call for a change of manager.
A YouGov survey has also revealed this week that 81 per cent of Rovers supporters polled would like the club to have a new boss.
But Kean says Venky’s remained fully behind him when he visited India last week and believes any fans currently worried will change their minds once they see his new signings in action.
Scott Dann, Yakubu and Simon Vukcevic are all in contention to make their debuts at Craven Cottage in tomorrow’s 4pm kick-off, with Kean set to make a decision over whether to include them from the start or introduce some from the bench.
Radosav Petrovic and David Goodwillie are also pushing for starts after largely being used as substitutes in their first few games since joining Rovers.
“I hope the fans will see a little taste of things,” Kean said of tomorrow’s game at Fulham, where he previously spent eight years in the club’s backroom staff.
“A few weeks ago when we played in the Carling Cup I think we had a glimpse of the future, we had quite a young team that played.
“And in the Everton game we were controlling that game. Now they’ll see some fresh faces coming in.
“To get somebody like Scott Dann and Yakubu with his goalscoring record, together with the other lads we got in earlier on in the window, I’m sure when the fans see them out there and performing for the club they’ll be happy with what they see.
“I can understand people’s frustrations with results.
"We’re three games in and we don’t have any points on the board.
“I’m frustrated myself that we’ve not got at least four points.
“But we’ve now got our squad. Now I think our season certainly starts but that’s not because we’ve not got any points, that’s because this is our group and our group is a strong group.
“I honestly think the squad’s stronger than it was last year.”
Kean visited Venky’s in Pune for his latest monthly meeting last week but may travel less frequently now, with the club’s owners set to have greater representation at matches - starting with forthcoming home games against Arsenal and Leyton Orient - after buying Gary Neville’s house near Bolton.
Speaking about last week’s meeting, Kean said: “We had a good conversation. We looked back on the list that I had given them from the end of last season.
“I was happy with the backing I got and the amount of players.
"Certainly on deadline day to go and spend in excess of £10m shows the backing I had from the owners.
“Now I might go (to India) a little bit less because I think the owners are going to come over now and see a bit more of the home games.
“I know some of them will be here for the Arsenal game and the Leyton Orient game.
“I think they always wanted to come over but now they’ve got a property that they’ve bought, that’s all finished and they’re ready to be here and they’ll certainly be at most of the home games.”
A number of fans from an internet message board grouped together to express their concerns to Venky’s over the club’s direction via an open letter, while 73 of 90 supporters polled in a national YouGov survey wanted a change of boss.
Asked about the open letter, Kean said: “It doesn’t make me feel bad at all, I’ve got a great relationship with the owners.
“I think if you actually speak with the fans, the way we’re playing I don’t think we could have done too much more in the last game.
“I think maybe there’s a minority of the fans who are frustrated.
“The top half is certainly achievable. One win takes you halfway up the table.”