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Andy Cryer Column: Kean imports not up to job in hand
STEVE Kean was right when he said the Premier League had to be his priority, that doesn’t excuse Tuesday night’s toothless Carling Cup exit though.
Fair enough, the Rovers boss opted to rest some of his key players for the trip to Cardiff with a crunch home against Swansea on Saturday. After all this could be make or break for his own managerial future.
That doesn’t explain why Rovers allowed themselves to be dumped out of the Carling Cup by a fairly ordinary Championship outfit. These are Kean’s players, so he obviously thought they were good enough.
The Rovers boss was the one who said Rovers had a balanced squad after the transfer window with ‘two players vying for each position’, so surely his fringe players should still have had enough to see off a hard-working but average Cardiff City?
They actually came up desperately short and the performance just asked more questions of what exactly Kean and Venky’s were doing during the summer transfer window.
Aside from Yakubu, and Scott Dann to an extent, Kean’s signings have ranged from below average to awful and have done little to strengthen Rovers’ strength in depth.
In fact, with El-Hadji Diouf, Keith Andrews, Nikola Kalinic and Brett Emerton all inexplicably being allowed to leave the club, it would be hard to argue against the squad being a lot weaker than it was when it ended last season.
We were told David Goodwillie was like ‘a young Wayne Rooney’ when Kean spent about £2million on him from Dundee United. He has yet to show any of that potential.
I’m not knocking the striker. He is only young and needs time to adapt to the Premier League but you can’t help questioning why players for the future were being signed without the players for now being delivered.
The same can be said of Radosav Petrovic. A replacement for Jermaine Jones? Not on the form we have seen from him so far this season.
Rovers were crying out for an established Premier League midfielder this summer rather than a young Serbian who would not make any impact this season.
Still at least we have seen these two. Montegrin international Simon Vukcevic was again left kicking his heels on the substitutes bench. Not the best use of £2m.
Then you get on to Brazilian right back Bruno Ribeiro. What on earth was that all about?
Kean said the players all call him Dennis Irwin, Lord Lucan would be more apt because we simply haven’t seen him. Ribeiro seems to be nowhere the squad, and is unlikely to ever be so, so why on earth bring him to Ewood?
Tuesday night’s Carling Cup exit just showed how little competition for places there really is at the club at the moment.
The first 11 is good enough to compete in the Premier League but, as has been shown so far this season, a couple of injuries and you fear the worst.
Kean clearly wasn’t backed with sufficient funds in the summer. He needs Venky’s to deliver the goods in January.
A win against Swansea on Saturday and Tuesday night’s defeat is forgiven although another defeat and you can’t help but wonder how long Kean can survive.