Martin Hardy: Boardroom cracks emerge from the chaos at Blackburn Rovers

Life Beyond the Premier League

Gary Bowyer (and Terry McPhillips) will remain in charge of first-team affairs until the end of the month, read a statement on the Blackburn Rovers' website this afternoon.

That, right now, feels like stability. Everything is relative.

"Arte et Labore". It is the Blackburn motto. "By skill and hard work."

It does not sit comfortably with the current version of a football club who became the first provincial team to reach the FA Cup final in 1882 and who were a founding member of the Football League six years later.

History continues to slip through the fingers of supporters. A decade ago, the League Cup was on display in the trophy cabinet inside Ewood Park. In 1995 they held the Premier League trophy.

In November 2010, Venky's London Ltd bought the club. Blackburn were 14th in the Premier League then. Less than a month later, Sam Allardyce was sacked as first-team manager. Blackburn were 13th in the Premier League.

Bad decisions unravel football clubs quickly. Steve Kean came and never left as quickly as he was supposed to – "a couple of months". Blackburn were relegated last season. Kean still stayed until 28 September, when in a hotel, the night before a game, he told his players his time was over. Blackburn wanted Tim Sherwood or Mark Hughes (who left the club in 2008) to take over. Henning Berg criticised the way the club was run. Berg was appointed manager. He lasted 57 days. Berg had signed a three-year deal.

Bowyer, who had a playing career with Hereford and Rotherham, and a managerial spell with Carshalton for two years in the late nineties, was promoted from reserve-team coach. He has won both of his games to move Blackburn up to 13th in the Championship.

Shebby Singh, the club's global advisor who used to play for Malaysia, admitted the new manager, and it could be Bowyer (current odds 10 -1), would only get a short-term contract.

"The best-laid plans can go wrong," he said. "You look for long-term stability, but right now, everybody has got to be on a footing where we all want to pull together to achieve certain targets.

"There's no time to indulge in someone who thinks he can come in, have three or four years on his contract, and take his time about what we've set out to achieve."

Time, like finance, is similarly slipping away. Blackburn will potentially receive £48 million over four years as part of their parachute payments. These are £16m in the first year, £16m the second year and then £8m in years three and four. In the summer they spent £8m on striker Jordan Rhodes. It was a bold statement, (if six months too late).

The VH Group is a poultry conglomerate owned by the Rao family and based in Pune, 70 miles south east of Mumbai. Anuradha Desai and her two brothers, Venkatesh and Balaji Rao, co-own the VH Group, which consists of 28 companies with a collective turnover in 2010 believed to be not far off £1bn. Balaji was the family member who wanted to take control of a football club.

A boardroom division is now said to exist between Singh on one side and Paul Agnew (operations director) and Derek Shaw (managing director) on the other. ,In an editorial today, The Lancashire Telegraph called for unity after Agnew and Shaw returned from another crisis meeting in India (and there have been a few of those). The division, the newspaper revealed, was such that the two parties did not sit next to each other during Tuesday's home win over Nottingham Forest that attracted just over 15,000. For the match against Cardiff last month it was just over 12,000. These are attendances not seen regularly at Ewood Park since before Jack Walker and Kenny Dalglish worked together.

Walker had a dream but more importantly he had direction. It was not a popular decision to sack Don Mackay in October 1991, after he led Blackburn to three fifth-placed finishes in his time in charge.

Dalglish came. History changed. How Blackburn fans must long for such vision, and such purpose. Bowyer for the rest of January does not quite compare.

Travel
travel
News
Tim Vine has won the funniest joke award at the Edinburgh Festival 2014
peopleTim Vine, winner of the Funniest Joke of the Fringe award, has nigh-on 200 in his act. So how are they conceived?
News
Jamie and Emily Pharro discovering their friend's prank
video
Arts and Entertainment
Taylor Swift crawls through the legs of twerking dancers in her 'Shake It Off' music video
musicEarl Sweatshirt thinks so
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
Our resilience to stress is to a large extent determined by our genes
science
Travel
travel
Arts and Entertainment
tv
Sport
sportBesiktas 0 Arsenal 0: Champions League qualifying first-leg match ends in stalemate in Istanbul
News
Pornography is more accessible - and harder to avoid - than ever
news... but they still admit watching it
Arts and Entertainment
The eyes have it: Kate Bush
musicKate Bush asks fans not to take photos at London gigs
News
i100
Extras
indybest
Sport
Manchester United are believed to have made a £15m bid for Marcos Rojo
sportWinger Nani returns to Lisbon for a season-long loan as part of deal
News
news
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
O'Toole as Cornelius Gallus in ‘Katherine of Alexandria’
filmSadly though, the Lawrence of Arabia star is not around to lend his own critique
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Ferguson: In the heartlands of America, a descent into madness

A descent into madness in America's heartlands

David Usborne arrived in Ferguson, Missouri to be greeted by a scene more redolent of Gaza and Afghanistan
BBC’s filming of raid at Sir Cliff’s home ‘may be result of corruption’

BBC faces corruption allegation over its Sir Cliff police raid coverage

Reporter’s relationship with police under scrutiny as DG is summoned by MPs to explain extensive live broadcast of swoop on singer’s home
Lauded therapist Harley Mille still in limbo as battle to stay in Britain drags on

Lauded therapist still in limbo as battle to stay in Britain drags on

Australian Harley Miller is as frustrated by court delays as she is with the idiosyncrasies of immigration law
Lewis Fry Richardson's weather forecasts changed the world. But could his predictions of war do the same?

Lewis Fry Richardson's weather forecasts changed the world...

But could his predictions of war do the same?
Kate Bush asks fans not to take photos at her London gigs: 'I want to have contact with the audience, not iPhones'

'I want to have contact with the audience, not iPhones'

Kate Bush asks fans not to take photos at her London gigs
Under-35s have rated gardening in their top five favourite leisure activities, but why?

Young at hort

Under-35s have rated gardening in their top five favourite leisure activities. But why are so many people are swapping sweaty clubs for leafy shrubs?
Tim Vine, winner of the Funniest Joke of the Fringe award: 'making a quip as funny as possible is an art'

Beyond a joke

Tim Vine, winner of the Funniest Joke of the Fringe award, has nigh-on 200 in his act. So how are they conceived?
The late Peter O'Toole shines in 'Katherine of Alexandria' despite illness

The late Peter O'Toole shines in 'Katherine of Alexandria' despite illness

Sadly though, the Lawrence of Arabia star is not around to lend his own critique
Wicken Fen in Cambridgeshire: The joy of camping in a wetland nature reserve and sleeping under the stars

A wild night out

Wicken Fen in Cambridgeshire offers a rare chance to camp in a wetland nature reserve
Comic Sans for Cancer exhibition: It’s the font that’s openly ridiculed for its jaunty style, but figures of fun have their fans

Comic Sans for Cancer exhibition

It’s the font that’s openly ridiculed for its jaunty style, but figures of fun have their fans
Besiktas vs Arsenal: Five things we learnt from the Champions League first-leg tie

Besiktas vs Arsenal

Five things we learnt from the Champions League first-leg tie
Rory McIlroy a smash hit on the US talk show circuit

Rory McIlroy a smash hit on the US talk show circuit

As the Northern Irishman prepares for the Barclays, he finds time to appear on TV in the States, where he’s now such a global superstar that he needs no introduction
Boy racer Max Verstappen stays relaxed over step up to Formula One

Boy racer Max Verstappen stays relaxed over step up to F1

The 16-year-old will become the sport’s youngest-ever driver when he makes his debut for Toro Rosso next season
Fear brings the enemies of Isis together at last

Fear brings the enemies of Isis together at last

But belated attempts to unite will be to no avail if the Sunni caliphate remains strong in Syria, says Patrick Cockburn
Charlie Gilmour: 'I wondered if I would end up killing myself in jail'

Charlie Gilmour: 'I wondered if I'd end up killing myself in jail'

Following last week's report on prison suicides, the former inmate asks how much progress we have made in the 50 years since the abolition of capital punishment