Kean rues ‘missed opportunity’

Rovers went into the Ewood Park clash on a high after the weekend’s

shock victory over Manchester United but failed to capitalise on

early momentum and were two down at half-time to a brace from Peter

Crouch. They were given hope by a first Premier League goal for

David Goodwillie 21 minutes from time but could not find an

equaliser. The result, which left Blackburn three points adrift of

safety, was made all the more disappointing for Kean by defeats for

fellow strugglers Wolves and QPR. The Scot, who felt an early

Christopher Samba header should have stood, said: “We feel as

though it’s a missed opportunity because the way the results have

fallen we could have found ourselves out of the bottom three. “But

it’s very tight, there’s other teams that have been dragged in it

now so if we can keep performing and dig another couple of results

out we can find ourselves in a much better position.” Kean’s job

has been made more difficult by the attitude of a large group of

fans towards him and owners Venky’s but he could have no complaints

on Monday as Ewood Park stayed fully behind the hosts. He said: “I

thought the fans were excellent and I’m delighted because it’s a

young team that we’ve got, and if they can get that feel-good

factor and confidence to get on the ball (then results can

improve). “I think the fans certainly came to the ground positive,

even at 2-0 they stayed with us, and it’s such a big help. I can

only applaud them for that.” Stoke boss Tony Pulis was one of a

number of managers to criticise the Blackburn fans for their

treatment of Kean, but he was impressed by the atmosphere at Ewood

Park. He said: “I thought the Blackburn supporters were brilliant.

They stuck with their team all the way through, and they need to do

that.” Pulis also praised Blackburn for the way they pushed his

side in the second half, particularly from Morten Gamst Pedersen’s

set-pieces. The Welshman added: “I thought first half we played

well and played some good stuff. It was a real mixture. You’ve got

to give them credit. “They’ve got some great quality from their

set-plays and they’re a big team. Anything that goes round Samba

it’s very difficult to win the first ball and they used that very

well. “They kept going for Steve. You didn’t see a team out there

who had given up hope. If they do that in their remaining games,

they’ll pick up some points.”