Kean 'must beat Swansea or be sacked'
Published 21:31 02/12/11 By Alan Nixon
Blackburn boss Steve Kean needs to beat Swansea this weekend to save his job as murmurings grow among Rovers' Indian owners.
Kean's team would be at least five points from safety if they lose to the Welsh club and sources claim Venky's chairwoman Anuradha Desai, who has been his strongest ally and even handed him a pay-rise just over a week ago, is now 'wavering'.
Rovers hit rock bottom at Stoke last weekend, then crashed out of the Carling Cup against Championship side Cardiff.
Desai, a shrewd businesswoman, knows the problem has to be addressed fast.
Kean is still to be told what funds would be available to him for sginings in January.
Owners Venky's have put aside £10million to invest, but will not give him the go-ahead to spend unless his team beat Swansea.
Insiders reveal that Rovers want a right-back, a midfielder and a striker - but Kean has yet to get the nod to go get his men.
Defeat on Saturday would see another manager handed the task of lifting the team during a busy run of games over the coming weeks - and to target players with the transfer kitty.
Ex-Rovers boss Mark Hughes' probable availability, as he looks likely to lose out to Martin O'Neill in the race to replace Steve Bruce at Sunderland, makes him a potential replacement.
There is also the possibility of a move for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, the Manchester United hero who has just steered Molde to the Norwgian title.
The penny does appear to have finally dropped for Kean - the eternal optimist who has been telling anyone who will listen that Rovers are on the up while watching them slide down the table.
Now he finally accepts it is points not platitudes that Blackburn need.
"We've played and done well against a number of big clubs but it's about victories now," said the Scot.
"There's a time when you can take positives from the way you play, but what we need to do now is take some points. We need to perform in these games.
"These games are now cup finals for us."
Saturday would be an opportune time for Blackburn to snatch a rare win, with Kean facing a board meeting on Monday.
But even if Rovers lose to a Swans side managed by his pal Brendan Rodgers, Kean believes his future will not be on the agenda.
"We have a board meeting on Monday when we'll discuss the transfer window again," he added.
"They are concerned about the position we are in, but the owners are still 100 per cent supportive.
"They are behind everything we are trying to do and I think they are excited about the run of games we've got coming up."
Kean has already held talks with directors Vineeth Rao and Simon Hunt about his transfer budget.
"Nothing was said about the league position," claimed the Scot. "This was only to discuss what we are going to do in January - positions that we want to get in new players and starting that whole process.
"There are times, in other meetings, when you will discuss the other things. This was just a meeting to discuss transfer targets and transfer funds.
"We will progress to talk and try and get people in. We always like to strengthen, so hopefully two and possibly three could come in.
"We would like a centre-forward. We have been chasing a number of targets in that area. We have a good chance of getting one in.
"It will be harder to get someone in if we are in the bottom three, but we don't intend to be in that position.
"We have a group of games [coming up] where we can add points and we feel as though we have an attractive club that can attract people to it.
"We are a young club and if we can the senior players back the mix will be good."