Blackburn Rovers boss insists squad is 'united' following Singh comments (From Lancashire Telegraph)
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Blackburn Rovers boss insists squad is 'united' following Singh comments
BLACKBURN Rovers boss Steve Kean insists his squad have proved they are “fully united” in their bid to bring Premier League football back to Ewood Park – after registering their disgust at comments made by global advisor Shebby Singh.
After discussions with Rovers players this week, the Profe-ssional Footballers Association has issued a statement slamming Singh for “disrespectful comments” towards Morten Gamst Pedersen at a fans meeting last weekend.
Ahead of tomorrow’s Championship opener at Ipswich Town, the Lancashire Telegraph understand there is growing conflict behind the scenes, with some of the Ewood hierarchy urging Venky’s to take action against Singh.
Boss Kean is believed to have expressed his anger directly to club matriarch Mrs Desai and has refused to accept the apology made by Singh in the wake of the comments.
It is also understood a group of senior players have drafted a letter to be sent to the owners describing their disappointment with Singh.
Kean though is confident the off-field distractions won’t take away from the big kick off and believes the unity his players have shown this week can only help them get off to a flying start.
Kean said: “I was not aware of that statement. I think it has been a disrupted week. We have put a lot of time in and have come up to a very important week and the comments have been disruptive and disappointing.
“The thing is we work very hard to assemble the right characters and get the right people into the building. I think the quality of the players we have brought in, and the quality of the men, we have a really tight group.
“That statement shows if you have a go at one of the, you have a go at them all. “I think we have a fantastically competitive squad that will back each other up. They have done it at this minute off the pitch, then what people will see is we will be doing it on the pitch.
“Anything that is said to me I can handle. Having a public go at one of your team mates is very difficult for them to take. I have got broad shoulders.”
When asked if he was prepared to continue working with Singh, Kean replied: “I can only explain the disruption that was caused. That is not my decision.”
Summer signing Danny Murphy has also described Singh’s comments as “unacceptable” but believes it has only helped in bringing the squad together.
He insists it is time to move on from the issue and focus on earning an instant Premier League return, starting with tomorrow’s opener at Ipswich.
“It has ended up being a positive in a way because it has brought us together even more, we have formed a close bond with each other,” he said. “Sometimes in adversity you come together a little bit.
“I don’t know who was guiding him, it all seems to have dealt with naively, terribly, poorly, whatever word you want. If you get sucked in and say things that aren’t politically correct, it is going to get publicised and then you have a problem because you have to deal with it.
“It is not something so big, we need to dwell on it though. We have said what we feel and ultimately that is all we can do. It is out of our hands, we don’t determine who keeps their job and who doesn’t.
“As a player you are employed to do a job and you have to be careful not to overstep the line trying to deal with political decisions. I think it was important to back Morten and the manager. It is being dealt with.”