Rovers hope to get Ince clearance

Blackburn Rovers are confident they satisfy the Premier League that Paul Ince’s managerial experience in the lower leagues compensates for his lack of the most basic coaching qualifications, clearing them to appoint him as their next manager.

Rovers are understood to have approached the league informally last week to discuss the ramifications of appointing Ince, a manager without the prerequisite qualifications to manage in the top flight. It is believed they were told that a formal case for his exemption from League rules would need to be put to the Premier League’s three-man board. No document - or delegation - had arrived at league headquarters from Lancashire by last night but the issue could be fast-tracked through a conference call among board members and dispensation could conceivably be granted today, freeing Rovers to make an official move to appoint Ince. MK Dons will not stand in his way.

Ince’s position was helped yesterday when the League Managers’ Association (LMA) provided him with their sanction to begin work at Ewood Park by indicating they had no objections on the qualifications issue. Rovers chief executive John Williams, who has conducted his search for a manager with characteristic dignity, maintains his reluctance to discuss who he will appoint out of respect to those who have applied. He would only say last night that he might possibly appoint today or by Monday, which seems to suggest confidence in the Premier League’s stance.

Willams said yesterday afternoon that he had not offered anyone the position. His pursuit of a replacement for Mark Hughes has certainly maintained its momentum to the end. Williams travelled to the European Championships this week to interview Michael Laudrup, the former Barcelona, Real Madrid and Juventus striker, who was in Switzerland and has also interviewed Steve McClaren and Sam Allardyce this week.

Laudrup, who yesterday confirmed the discussions, guided Getafe to the final of Spain’s Copa del Rey last season and into the last eight of the Uefa Cup, but he has opted to leave the Madrid-based side after just one season in charge and with the Fenerbahce job not having materialised for him he appears keen on a move to England.

But Ince increasingly looks the prime contender, even though his grounds for dispensation on the coaching issue seem less clear cut than those who have sought it before him. Gareth Southgate successfully argued, when he took up the Middlesbrough job, that a workload for club and country had created inadequate free summer time and there was a problem with course availability. Glenn Roeder’s studies were interrupted by ill health.

The Premier League does not consider these cases to provide a precedent, though, and while Ince has spent time at Aberystwyth on Wednesday - observing an ‘A’ licence course being run by the FA of Wales - his 20 months in club management, Rovers will need to show that his experience guiding Macclesfield away from relegation and the Dons to promotion has been an adequate learning process.

The decision to allow Southgate to continue as Boro boss upset the LMA whose then chief executive John Barnwell was of the view that any general lack of qualifications made managers easier to sack. But current chief executive Richard Bevan, who was appointed last September, has a different outlook on the issue and insisted he will not lobby against Ince's appointment. "It's a Premier League rule. The Premier League has made exceptions to it in the past and that's up to them. From our perspective, if any manager wants help to get qualifications, either football related or non-football related, we are here to help. We would support Paul Ince if he got the Blackburn job."

Rovers keeper Brad Friedel effectively threw his hat in the ring for Ince when he described what a good manager for the club the midfielder with whom he played at Liverpool.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Latest in Sport
Sport
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.

Day In a Page

How to stop an asteroid hitting Earth: Would people co-operate to face down a global peril?

How to stop an asteroid hitting Earth

Would people cooperate to face a global peril?
Just one day to find €1.6bn: Greece edges nearer euro exit

One day to find €1.6bn

Greece is edging inexorably towards an exit from the euro
New 'Iron Man' augmented reality technology could help surgeons and firefighters, say scientists

'Iron Man' augmented reality technology could become reality

Holographic projections would provide extra information on objects in a person's visual field in real time
Sugary drinks 'are killing 184,000 adults around the world every year'

Sugary drinks are killing 184,000 adults around the world every year

The drinks that should be eliminated from people's diets
Pride of Place: Historians map out untold LGBT histories of locations throughout UK

Historians map out untold LGBT histories

Public are being asked to help improve the map
Lionel, Patti, Burt and The Who rock Glasto

Lionel, Patti, Burt and The Who rock Glasto

This was the year of 24-carat Golden Oldies
Paris Fashion Week

Paris Fashion Week

Thom Browne's scarecrows offer a rare beacon in commercial offerings
A year of the caliphate:

Isis, a year of the caliphate

Who can defeat the so-called 'Islamic State' – and how?
Marks and Spencer: Can a new team of designers put the spark back into the high-street brand?

Marks and Spencer

Can a new team of designers put the spark back into the high-street brand?
'We haven't invaded France': Italy's Prime Minister 'reclaims' Europe's highest peak

'We haven't invaded France'

Italy's Prime Minister 'reclaims' Europe's highest peak
Isis in Kobani: Why we ignore the worst of the massacres

Why do we ignore the worst of the massacres?

The West’s determination not to offend its Sunni allies helps Isis and puts us all at risk, says Patrick Cockburn
7/7 bombings 10 years on: Four emergency workers who saved lives recall the shocking day that 52 people were killed

Remembering 7/7 ten years on

Four emergency workers recall their memories of that day – and reveal how it's affected them ever since
Humans: Are the scientists developing robots in danger of replicating the hit Channel 4 drama?

They’re here to help

We want robots to do our drudge work, and to look enough like us for comfort. But are the scientists developing artificial intelligence in danger of replicating the TV drama Humans?
Time to lay these myths about the Deep South to rest

Time to lay these myths about the Deep South to rest

'Heritage' is a loaded word in the Dixie, but the Charleston killings show how dangerous it is to cling to a deadly past, says Rupert Cornwell
What exactly does 'one' mean? Court of Appeal passes judgement on thorny mathematical issue

What exactly does 'one' mean?

Court of Appeal passes judgement on thorny mathematical issue