Blackburn not in crisis says chairman

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The Independent Football

Blackburn chairman John Williams has denied the club are in crisis as the fall-out from the sacking of manager Sam Allardyce continues.

Rovers appear to have been thrown into turmoil following the surprising and much-criticised decision of the club's new owners to axe the veteran boss and assistant Neil McDonald on Monday.

There were reports that Williams himself was considering his position following the sudden move by Indian firm Venky's, who purchased the club in a £43million deal last month.

However, it is now understood the long-serving chairman, who oversaw the sale, is prepared to stay on at Ewood Park and he has called on disgruntled fans to pull together.

Rovers will be in the caretaker charge of Steve Kean when they face Barclays Premier League bottom side West Ham on Saturday.

In a statement issued this morning, Williams said: "It has been a very difficult few days for everyone involved with the club.

"The departure of Sam and Neil was unexpected and I would like to add my thanks to them both for their efforts over two years.

"It is widely accepted that they did a very good job for us.

"However, the decision has been taken and we must move on.

"I would like to appeal to all Rovers stakeholders to fully get behind Steve, an out-and-out football man and a true professional, on Saturday.

"We are not in crisis - in fact, we are well placed in the table.

"But we know only too well how tight the Premier League is this year and we are about to embark on a spell of six major first-team fixtures in three weeks.

"We do not want negativity around the place. That could work to our disadvantage by playing into the hands of our upcoming opponents.

"We need solidarity in every area. Football is a precarious business, fuelled by opinion, but I repeat that this is a time for everyone with a love for Blackburn Rovers to really show their support.

"This is not about individuals either. It is about the club - first, second and third."

Rovers are 13th in the table and the sacking of Allardyce has attracted widespread condemnation.

Anuradha Desai, chairperson of Venky's, yesterday attempted to draw the sting out of some of the negative headlines by conducting a series of interviews.

She said Allardyce simply did not fit in with the "long-term vision" for the club and that Kean could remain in charge "forever" if he proves himself.