Kean backed by fellow bosses

A situation that has been escalating throughout the season reached

its nadir at Ewood Park on Wednesday as Rovers were beaten 2-1 by

Bolton to drop to the bottom of the Premier League table. Kean has

been a lightning rod for fans’ frustration, not just with his own

performance but also the role of Indian owners Venky’s, and a small

group took their protests to the club’s training ground on Friday.

Asked if he would consider meeting with those supporters, the Scot

said: “I have to take direction from other people as far as health

and safety and making sure if we do anything like that it’s in a

proper environment. “At the game the other night it was pretty

vicious so it would have to be in an environment where first and

foremost it was safe.” Fans have complained about a perceived lack

of communication from the club, but Kean insisted plans are in

place to allow their grievances to be heard. He said: “I spoke with

the deputy chief executive and I think there was a plan where the

directors first and foremost were going to meet with the fans. I

don’t know where that’s at at the moment. “I said I would be

available. I’ve already met with the fans in my office and did a

full, open podcast. I answered every single question they asked me.

“I’m always very open and honest with anything I’m asked.” Kean has

been left increasingly isolated, with Venky’s conspicuous by their

absence at recent games while local MP Jack Straw and the

Lancashire Telegraph have both called for the manager to go.

However, he did receive some welcome support from his fellow

managers this week, with Sir Alex Ferguson, Harry Redknapp, Owen

Coyle and David Moyes all condemning the situation. Kean said: “My

phone’s been going hot all week with people phoning with messages

saying ‘Hang in there’. “No disrespect to local MPs or local

journalists or ex-players, but when you’ve got vastly experienced

managers that are phoning up and saying under the circumstances

you’re doing a marvellous job, then I’ll listen to them.” The home

defeats to West Brom and Bolton have left Blackburn in a perilous

position, and it does not get any easier for Kean with a trip to

Anfield to face Liverpool on Boxing Day followed by another away

game against Manchester United. Rovers have also been hit hard by

injuries, particularly in defence, with Scott Dann, Martin Olsson,

Ryan Nelsen and Gael Givet all out. Goalkeeper Paul Robinson is

also a doubt for Monday’s clash, although Kean is hoping he will be

able to play despite a tear in his calf muscle, while Givet

underwent a successful heart operation yesterday after suffering

palpitations in the defeat at Sunderland earlier this month. Kean

called for fans to recognise his problems, saying: “I can

understand if they’re getting uptight about the position we’re in.

We’re all uptight about it but we feel, with the right ability to

select the squad, (that can improve). “If five defenders are

injured, there’s nothing we can do about that. We’re praying and

hoping they get back as quickly as possible. “Gael Givet’s had a

very successful heart operation and we expect him to be back in

full training within a week. “I would hope the fans can see that

and understand that if any of those players were fit, they would

play. We’re playing players out of position and giving ourselves a

bit of a mountain to climb. “In the second half against Bolton I

felt the players responded very well and, right with the very last

header of the game, we were unfortunate Chris Samba couldn’t clip

it in.”