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Apr 18, 2012

Givet: I didn't refuse to play for Rovers

Blackburn defender Gael Givet has vehemently denied that he refused to play against Swansea last Saturday, after manager Steve Kean claimed he was not "in the right frame of mind" to be involved.

• Kean: Givet wasn't in right state to play
• Blog: The end is almost nigh

Givet, 30, has not played a single minute for Rovers since being sent off in the 7-1 defeat to Arsenal in February and was not included in the matchday squad to face Swansea.

Kean revealed after the game that he had wanted the French centre-back to play but had concerns about his state of mind.

"I will speak to him again, and if he is in a better frame of mind then great, but he was nowhere near in the right frame of mind today," Kean said.

"I can't get inside somebody's head, I can only say how much we and his team-mates need him... We need guys who want to play even if they are injured or their heads are not quite right, but I would rather keep the conversation between myself and Gael private.

"I said (to Givet) 'We need you to play today, we need you to start today' and he was nowhere near in the right frame of mind to do it."

However, Givet has released a statement dismissing the Scot's comments out of hand.

"I wish to make it clear that I have never refused to play for Blackburn Rovers," Givet said. "It was just the manager Steve Kean who decided which players would be selected for the match at Swansea."

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