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Feb 29, 2012

Venky's rule out player sales

Venky's, the owners of Blackburn Rovers, have ruled out a firesale of the club's top players after they let Chris Samba join Anzhi Makhachkala.

• Samba: Move not about money

Samba handed in a transfer request months ago, but only landed his move in the final few hours of the Russian transfer window on Friday. Now speculation is rife that there are others who will follow the giant defender out of Ewood Park.

However, Venky's representative and Rovers director Vineeth Rao dismissed any talk of selling their top players and insisted that they were focused on building for the future.

"There are no plans like that there, that is ridiculous," Rao told the Lancashire Telegraph. "There are no plans to sell any more key players, why would there be? Our immediate focus is on staying up in the Premier League.

"We hope Chris Samba will be the last key departure. There are no plans to sell any more key players because we want to improve the squad. We want to add to the squad and improve it, not sell the players we have got. We are not planning on selling any more key players."

Rao also revealed that selling Samba was not in the club's plans, but they were left with no choice after the player decided he wanted to go.

"It was not even our intention to sell Chris Samba," said Rao. "We did not want to sell him. We wanted him on the pitch because he has been a big player but in the end we had to respect his wishes because he wanted to leave.

"We had to respect his wishes. He has played for Blackburn for five years and has been a very important player."

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