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The Toe Poke
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Kean: Rovers owners back me

Blackburn manager Steve Kean has insisted he has the full backing of the club's owners and has never felt his job was under threat despite relegation.

Kean, who along with owners Venky's was the focus of supporter protests as Blackburn slumped into the Championship, claimed he had not had to fight to protect his position during summer talks with the Ewood Park hierarchy.

Speaking after the club had wrapped up the signing of Danny Murphy from Fulham on a two-year deal, the Scot said he had had "great conversations" with the owners during the summer and felt the club was moving forward.

"I gave an assessment of where I felt last year there were a few things we could have done better," he said. "Obviously there were some games that could have gone our way, and they didn't for whatever reason.

"We had some great open conversations and I'm delighted that we're moving forward again. We had as open a conversation as we always do. It's always the same format. That brings us to where we are - in a positive position with a fantastic signing."

Murphy sidestepped questions about the controversy and demonstrations that surrounded Blackburn's relegation and said he was looking forward to working with Kean.

"It's hard for me to comment because I don't know much about it [last season at Blackburn], so it would be ill-informed opinion," he said.

"I think football clubs go through good and bad cycles. I've been involved in clubs before where it's gone down and then back up - not down as in relegation, but down in terms of turmoil and trouble.

"Steve likes to play football the way I like to play. There was enthusiasm when he spoke about what he wants to do this season - bounce back and give the supporters something to cheer rather than the negativity of last year."

Changes behind the scenes at Ewood Park have seen ex- Preston chairman Derek Shaw become the club's new managing director, with Paul Agnew moving from general manager to operational director.

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