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Blackburn Rovers midfielder Murphy eager to make amends
DANNY Murphy insists Blackburn Rovers “have to be aiming for the Premier League” this season – after claiming the club were let down by “certain individuals” last time round.
Rovers open their Championship campaign at Ipswich Town today and it understood that co-owner Balaji Rao is set to be at Portman Road, and may also be present for Wednesday’s home game against Hull City.
Murphy will make his Rovers debut this afternoon and has insisted there will be no excuses for not earning an instant top flight return after claiming the squad is good enough to do just that.
The summer signing from Fulham believes under fire boss Steve Kean was let down last season, as Rovers plummeted to relegation, but is adamant there is now the resolve to put those past wrongs right.
He said: “Ultimately we have to be aiming for promotion because of the squad we have got, the budget we have got and the ambition we have got.
“There is no point even thinking about anything else. If we do have bad luck with injuries there is hiding behind that.
“We have a squad good enough and big enough to cope with that. I am thinking the squad is going to be more than capable. You can’t look ahead, but at the end of the season the league won’t lie and that is why there should not be any excuses.
“There are some good players here, some good additions and the expectancy level is to bounce back straight away because you have the bigger budget and the playing squad to do it.
“We know it doesn’t always work that way. You have to be realistic, the first two seasons are your best chance of getting back.
“The signings we have made show they are ambitious to do that.
“Some clubs come down and get rid of all their best players and don’t really spend. You can’t do it cheaply, you have to do it properly and the club have tried to do that.”
Large sections of Ewood Park remain adamant they don’t want Steve Kean as their manager, after a dismal managerial record, but Murphy admits he feels for his boss.
He said: “I do feel for the manager because he is under pressure anyway.
“I think he was let down by certain individuals last time.
“Certain players downed tools and demanded things. If you have that at any club, players demanding when they play and when they should leave, the fact is if you are footballer if you are asked to go and do a job you do it.
“I think there were too many egos here and I think a few too many who downed tools and didn’t put in the type of effort even when they were on the pitch they should have.
“Of course it affects the dressing room. It gets to a point where other players say why I am busting a gut when this fella next to me isn’t.
“But I wasn’t here, it is difficult to talk about that.
“The fact is what happened, happened and whoever is to blame it is irrelevant. Apportioning blame is secondary to what is going on now, and that is trying to get back in the Premier League.”
Murphy is also under no illusions the task ahead is easy.
He is aware of the ill-feeling and unrest among sections of supporters but believes it is up to the players to win them round.
He said: “They will come back if they feel after a month or two we have a genuine chance of going up. Even the most harsh, cynical Blackburn Rovers fan could not have expected the signings we have made. I think they have probably been surprised at the quality we have brought in.
“It is a simple equation. Good results is going to mean we are doing things right.
“If we are struggling the manager is going to be under heavy pressure.
“The majority of Blackburn fans will realise positivity and a good atmosphere at Ewood is going to benefit a return to the Premier League. No matter what arguments or grievances they have, they want to be watching Blackburn in the Premier League.”
Ruben Rochina has said on Twitter that he has not travelled to Portman Road for today’s game, despite claiming that he is fit again after a hamstring injury.
Rochina said: “I am fit but I don’t travel.”
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