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Pressure increasing on Desai to sack Blackburn Rovers boss Kean
BLACKBURN Rovers co-owner Anuradha Desai is coming under heavy pressure to axe Steve Kean – but the under-fire boss remains confident he has her backing.
Club matriarch Desai has the final say on all Rovers decisions and has been the one to keep the faith in Kean throughout recent struggles.
Board members, close advisers and even fellow co-owners Venkatesh and Balaji Rao are understood to believe there needs to be a change of manager, but chief Desai is yet to be convinced.
An expected trip by Venky’s to Rovers’ final game of the season at Chelsea tomorrow will not happen with Kean now expected to arrive at their Pune HQ on Tuesday for talks.
Desai is understood to be ready to back her man but increasing media pressure from within India, plus heavy calls for Kean to go within her trusted camp, could yet persuade her to make a change.
Desai is also understood to be very concerned about the low season ticket uptake with large sections of Rovers fans ready to vote against Kean with their feet next campaign.
Kean himself will look to persuade Desai he is the man to lead Rovers back into the Premier League and is understood to be ready to suggest a potential new management team, in the wake of deputy chief executive Paul Hunt’s dismissal.
Neither Balaji or Venkatesh Rao were prepared to discuss Kean’s future during media interviews in India, increasing the uncertainty on the manager’s future.
“In the last month we have made the club debt free. We are here for the long haul,” Balaji Rao said. “We have absolutely no intentions of selling the club. Me, my brother Venkatesh and my sister (Anuradha Desai), our entire family, has fallen in love with the club. We cannot sell it.
“We were certainly not expecting to be relegated. It was the saddest bit of news for me since my mother passed away.
“But we will bounce back within a year.
“There will be lots of changes in the near future. We will bring in changes within the next month.
“We cannot hold back players.
“Those who want to leave may do so. But let me tell you, 80 per cent of the players want to stay.”
Meanwhile Ryan Nelsen is in a dispute with the club over a ‘golden handshake’ agreement following his January exit.
Nelsen agreed a pay-off to leave with 18 months still on his deal but has stopped being paid a monthly sum.
Canadian starlet Junior Hoilett has moved a step nearer his Ewood exit after giving notice on his Brockhall property lease. Sources close to Hoilett say he will definitely leave this summer.