Tony Mowbray is still waiting to learn his budget for next season – but admits it is ‘high on the agenda’ as he looks to shape his squad for 2020/21.

Rovers’ play-off hopes ended with a run of three successive defeats, and while work behind the scenes has begun for next season, uncertainty over finances mean no decisions can be made.

That includes Rovers’ six senior players who are out of contract in two weeks’ time, with Mowbray unsure whether the budget will be able to accommodate the players he’d like to keep.

Mowbray has travelled to India to discuss budget plans with the owners in each of the three summers he has been in charge. However, the Covid-19 pandemic has shelved those plans this time around.

“That’s very high on the agenda but we have no information on that,” Mowbray told the Lancashire Telegraph.

“But we do need information from India about budgets. We’re at that time of year where the phone is non-stop ringing, my head of recruitment’s phone is non-stop ringing.

“All these agents have players who would be brilliant for Blackburn Rovers in their opinion, but the message is we don’t know the budget, we don’t know how much we have to spend or not.

“We’re not signing anyone at the moment, we don’t know what the situation is.

“And to be fair to the owners I think that’s fair because their business interests, and the environment they’re in, it’s a difficult place to be.

“We will get on with it and see what happens in the next month or two.”

Stewart Downing has expressed his interest in extending his stay at the club, and like fellow out of contract players Danny Graham and Jayson Leutwiler, has featured in every matchday squad this season.

Attacker Dominic Samuel has been used in all four fixtures since the re-start, but Mowbray has stressed no discussions over re-negotiations can take place before the budget is revealed.

Richie Smallwood and Sam Hart are the other two players out of contract, while Christian Walton and Tosin Adarabioyo will return to their parent clubs, Brighton and Hove Albion and Manchester City respectively after their loan spells were extended.

And having been regulars in the side this season, their departures will leave big holes in the backline for next season. 

He added: “We will consider them. The out of contract players are in the budget until the last game of the season and after that they’re not in the budget and conversations will be had with those players.

“At this moment, I don’t know if we will have a budget that can cover the salaries of those players, or a negotiated salary of those players.

“All of those things are up in the air.

“We know where we are with our current loan players and that they will be going back to their parent clubs.

“We know where the holes in our squad are. I can’t go and make promises to them, I can’t go and do this and that.

“I don’t know whether we’ve got the money to pay their salaries. We have to wait and that’s what we’ll do until we know where we’re going next year and what we have.

“If we don’t have any money to find a replacement goalkeeper or centre half when Tosin and Christian go back, we’ll have to wheel and deal because we ultimately need those positions filling.”