Jol praise for Rovers' Kean support

Martin Jol has praised Blackburn's board for sticking with under-fire manager Steve Kean.

Kean to meet with unhappy fans

The Dutchman takes his Fulham side to Ewood Park on Saturday to face Rovers, who languish bottom of the Barclays Premier League after a poor start to the season.

Such form has seen owners Venky's and Kean come under fire from unhappy fans, leading to calls for both to leave the Lancashire outfit.

Jol admits he has never seen anything like it before during his career in professional football and admires the owners for their backing of Kean.

"It is an awkward situation," the Fulham manager said. "Most of the time the club, the board and the owners will give in after a couple of week and we, the managers, are gone.

"But they have stuck with him and you get a different situation.

"I think this could be the first time probably in the history of the Premier League that a board stuck with their manager [under such pressure]. How many times will that happen?

"For us, for the League Managers' Association, it is a good development because I feel sometimes it is not as it seems.

"You need time for development as well as results, which is not a good combination.

"Of course as you saw with QPR it is a tough job and people have to make decision like that."

Jol was referring to Neil Warnock's sacking as QPR manager earlier this week after a string of poor performances.

Warnock claims he would have kept the Rs in the Premier League and Jol believes Kean can do the same if Blackburn stick with him.

"I feel for any manager that is under pressure," he said. "He, of course, needs time.

"He does not necessarily have a young team but there are a few good youngsters there.

"I think they have been a bit unfortunate.

"They have Yakubu who is scoring their goals yet still, for example, lost 2-1 against Stoke.

"They played in a different system at Manchester United and got a great win.

"Hopefully they will let him get on with his job and then you will see, with his younger players and Yakubu up front, they will be fine.

"There is always pressure even if you lose twice, but not the kind of pressure he is under."

The predicament at Blackburn was compounded further on Thursday when defender Christopher Samba confirmed he wanted to leave Ewood Park.

The 27-year-old claims promises have not been kept but, despite all of that, Jol does not necessarily agree this is a good time to be playing Rovers.

"Every game is different," he said. "If you saw them over the last four or five games they were always on the fringe of doing something good, but then they conceded a goal and that was awful for them.

"But it is not easy to play at Manchester United and if you saw that match, they played a 4-5-1 and came away with a good result.

"If you let them play, they have good players on the ball.

"For us we need to be efficient and score one or two goals and then, of course, we are in with a chance."

Jol will be able to welcome back Simon Davies and Andrew Johnson for Saturday's match. The former is in contention after a back injury, while Blackburn target Johnson has missed recent matches with a groin complaint.

Dickson Etuhu will be assessed ahead of the match, while David Stockdale will again deputise in goal with Mark Schwarzer still two weeks away from a return.



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