Rovers tell Samba he can sit in stands rather than leave
Steve Kean, the Blackburn Rovers manager, has told Queen's Park Rangers that his club are prepared to let captain Christopher Samba sit in the stands, rather than sell him.
Kean's private comments came in the last month and will have done little to enhance a relationship which has become so difficult that the defender yesterday had to track the manager down in the coaches' office at Rovers' Brockhall training centre and demand a meeting – hours before the club officially declared his transfer request had been turned down.
The Congolese defender had arrived with friends at Brockhall for a light training session yesterday, with no formal training scheduled. He felt that Kean was avoiding him, by delaying the discussion he had asked for, and then went to seek the manager out.
When the two men finally spoke, Samba is understood to have explained that he felt the club had broken a promise by failing to invest for a push for a Europa League place – as he had been told they would last summer. But Rovers fear that any money they recoup from their most saleable asset will go straight to paying off a £10m bank debt, and that appears to have influenced their resolve to refuse the transfer request he tabled on Monday.
Even if the demand had been granted, neither QPR nor Tottenham would go near the £18m Rovers have been quoting. A compromise £12m figure is possible if Samba digs his heels in, though even that may be prohibitive.
Samba's preference is to leave for Paris Saint-Germain. He has close family in the city and often returns there during free periods. But the French side already have five centre-halves in their squad and he is not on new coach Carlo Ancelotti's list. There is no evidence that Samba's decision to place a transfer request has created any friction with his team-mates at the club.
Rovers declared through their website yesterday that the transfer request had been turned down. "Blackburn reiterate that Samba is not for sale," the club said. "The player signed a new contract with the club less than a year ago which runs to June 2015."
Samba said: "In my five years at Blackburn I have always given 100 per cent. I have had several opportunities to leave but I have always stayed."
Latest in Sport
Morgan Schneiderlin to Manchester United: Saints yet to receive 'serious offer' but midfielder could complete move by end of this week
Sergio Ramos to Manchester United: Real Madrid defender 'wants' Old Trafford switch
Radamel Falcao to Chelsea: Former Manchester United striker 'signs contract' to join Blues and is told to meet up with squad on pre-season tour
Venezuelan TV host gets completely naked while reporting on Copa America win over Colombia
Manchester United transfer news: Javier Hernandez nears exit as Liverpool eye move for striker despite revealing Real Madrid video
- 1 Kim Jong-un shows off airport designed by architect he likely had executed
- 2 Tunisia hotel attack: Locals form 'human shield' to protect hotel from gunman Seifeddine Rezgui
- 3 Why it matters 26 million people have changed their Facebook profile picture to a rainbow flag
- 4 German ethics council calls for incest between siblings to be legalised by Government
- 5 Fifty Shades of Grey author E.L James's Twitter Q&A didn't go exactly as planned
The moment a Queen's Guard soldier lost it and drew his gun at annoying tourist
Greece crisis: The wider lesson is that it’s time to abandon this failed experiment in currencies
'I wish the BBC would stop calling it Islamic State' – David Cameron unleashes frustration at broadcaster
David Cameron struck double blow in his hopes to win Britain a new EU deal
Extend Right To Buy to tenants of private landlords, Labour's Jeremy Corbyn says
Pentagon accuses Russia of 'playing with fire' over nuclear threats towards Nato