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Selected great posts as I stumble across them

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Glenn

One word ruins your list ...VENKYSCUM

Gotta make my decision today on renewing . Still undecided .

You say that Abbs but I also think we're in a far better place approaching the new season than we were at the start of last. Mainly for the reasons Stuart lists but even though we must be losing money hand over fist, are Venky's servicing this? Maybe they actually are? Then again they might not be! But all I know is that the club keeps going somehow. I don't think anyone really knows.

If they didn't care one iota would they have got us Cat1 status? Would they have paid for a new pitch? Would they have paid off Murphy, Gomes? Would they have allowed Bowyer to bring his own team of back room staff in and funded the wages of the new players? Would they really be letting Bowyer, on the face of it, just get on with it how he sees fit? Or would they have just walked away by now - leaving us with huge amounts of debt?

This is in no way a pro-Venky's post, they're minutes away from going straight back to square one at any one time. They have that in their locker, we all know that. I'm just putting it out there that maybe, just maybe, it really has all been down to never been seen before levels of idiocy on their part and the fact that they have been completely and utterly fleeced by placing their trust in the totally wrong people (we know who they are). It's one massive corner they need to turn (I said the other day on here that I reckon it could take up to five years to put things right) but maybe they are going in the right direction? Got to be careful here, I'm well aware that they could cock it all up by the time I've finished typing.

They do need to get rid of Shaw by the way. Useless.

Anyway, I reckon you should renew Abbey, if only so you can go with your lad. You did it last season - this one for me is at least shaping up a little better in terms of having a plan and a strategy on the football side and although they haven't splashed the cash in terms of transfer fees they do appear to be allowing Bowyer to bring players in with points to prove and hopefully a desire to do well - which is what we all want to see.

Source: Season Tickets 2013/14
Glenn

Why needless to say? If you don't need to say it then don't. You're wearing your non renewal as a badge of honour and it's not. It's your personal choice not to renew, but it's not some moral highground you occupy there. We've gone beyond this surely. some won't set foot in Ewood until every part of the Venkys takeover is gone. That's their right and their prerogative but don't say it like it's in some way superior. The shredder had my renewal letter a few weeks ago too because I didn't need it - I renewed online.

Source: Season Tickets 2013/14
Glenn

Why needless to say? If you don't need to say it then don't. You're wearing your non renewal as a badge of honour and it's not. It's your personal choice not to renew, but it's not some moral highground you occupy there. We've gone beyond this surely. some won't set foot in Ewood until every part of the Venkys takeover is gone. That's their right and their prerogative but don't say it like it's in some way superior. The shredder had my renewal letter a few weeks ago too because I didn't need it - I renewed online.

I think the bit in bold is where we are now.

Some reasons to be cheerful:

- No Kean, Agnew

- Gary Bowyer seems a genuine bloke and one we can all get behind

- Season ticket prices are still very low (even ignoring next season's pseudo-offer)

- Some deadwood removed

- Some quiet but promising transfer business already under way

- People are even starting to ignore Singh's mad comments (Starve him of an audience and maybe he'll lose his impact)

- Academy status shows signs planning for the future

- Jordan Rhodes smiling and signing autographs in the club shop

Ironically now that Aggers has gone that, just maybe, we can start to move on...

Source: Season Tickets 2013/14
Kamy100

Right, this is it then. Seven games to go in this season end wrap up. Who’s up for this review gig next year then? I’ve done my bit.

The good news is that by the time you’ve read all this, and all the embedded links, it’ll be mid-August, which is probably when season tickets will go on sale.

First up...

A song. New Orders ‘Ceremony’.

Rovers should walk out to this… sadly I fear there’s more chance of the team walking out to the ‘Chicken Song’ next season. Actually they should probably walk out to ‘Atmosphere’ the way it’s going (that’s the Joy Division version, not Russ Abbott’s, Venky’s for crying out loud).

“Is everyone having a nice time?” Good grief. Not really, Bernard, but thanks for asking. In all fairness you weren’t to know about Venky’s and their associates in 2002 and that you’d be in a BRFCS review of April 2013 were you? In fact none of us even in our wildest nightmares back then would have believed it possible that 11 years later Rovers would be owned by Chicken farmers from Pune and that we would have a “Global Advisor” who is the Malaysian equivalent of Elton bloody Welsby after he had undergone major, unsuccessful, brain surgery delivered with a rusty tea spoon.

Anyway…

Monday 1st April – Cardiff City 3 Rovers 0 (Campbell, Mason, Whittingham)

Sat just two points off the relegation places before the match, Rovers thought it would be a good idea to rest top scorer Jordan Rhodes, along with Jason Lowe, David Dunn and someone else or other. Dunn of late was the only one playing with any semblance of a degree of urgency. Rhodes as we all know is the only one who scores goals.

In their place came Best, Bentley, Pedersen and a man who I had hoped would never play for us ever again, Danny Murphy.

Hey and guess what? Yep, we stank. It was utter garbage.

Inability to mark at set pieces? Check. Inability to trouble the opposition goalkeeper? Check. Ability to concede with practically the last kick of the game? Check. Oh yes, it was all there. All the VBRFC party pieces were in evidence.

Jake Kean also injured himself and would now miss the rest of the season. A bad day all round.

Rovers now sat in 19th place. Equal on points with four other teams including Huddersfield Town who were 22nd and whom we paid £8m for Jordan Rhodes earlier in the season, only for him to sit on the bench whist we are in a relegation battle.

It had been a real effort but at long last that 33/1 shot of VBRFC being relegated looked decidedly on. Someone somewhere in the world must have been delighted.

Thursday 4th April – After approximately 48 hours (a club record in recent times) of relative tranquillity, Derek Shaw, aka ‘Shelf Bloke’, aka the Managing Director and the man who put’s the Sha into Shagnew, was relieved of his duties. This pending an investigation into the amount of compensation Henning Berg was due to receive following his fortnight in charge in December.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-2303699/Blackburn-Rovers-managing-director-Derek-Shaw-leaves-Ewood-Park.html

Shaw possibly left the club and took all his shelves with him along with his Roy Chubby Brown hat.

It was rumoured that Karen Silk would replace Sha and now become MD. (Instead, as it transpired, she was actually working her notice period.)

messy-office.jpg

Karen Silk: “Thanks Derek, thanks a lot”**

(**she may well have said, if that was her new desk and there were no shelves or files. Of course that isn’t really Karen, silly, that isn’t her desk and Rovers are literally awash with shelves, racking, files and all manner of really great stationary and storage products).

Later on this day Rovers issued a statement on its website to “quash rumours”, stating that Derek Shaw was still very much part of the club and was still the MD. It was fair to assume then that this immediately threw into even further doubt the validity of the above photograph. Yet, unsurprisingly, it remains in this review in the hope of obtaining a cheap laugh.

Saturday 6 April – Sheffield Wednesday 3 Rovers 2 (Johnson x2, Lita (Pen) - Rhodes / Dunn)

Rovers took the lead, they equalised, they took the lead, Rovers equalised, they took the lead, Rovers didn’t equalise. End.

There. How’s that for a match report?

It wasn’t very good by all accounts. Yet again there was a lack of passion and determination from our highly paid players. Dunny was mentioned in despatches again but they all needed to be fighting by this stage of the season.

Bowyer was now threatening to show the players the league table! That’s how serious it had become. Whether Bowyer went through with his threat is anyone’s guess but if any of the players had taken a look after the game they would have seen that we were in the bottom three for the first time this season.

Actually the bottom three of this division for the first time since 1991. Way to go Venky’s! Way to go Shebby Singh! Way to go Paul Agnew! Way to go Derek Shaw! Still, a lot of what they do is very good someone once said.

Monday 8th April – Well if the circus won’t go to the clowns then the clowns must go to the circus. Something like that anyway.

Singh (already there), Shagnew and the unfortunate Bowyer, were instructed to go to Pune, India to see Desai. A woman who rules with an iron fist, a woman who knows nothing about football (but can probably teach Singh a thing or to) and a woman who seemingly surrounds herself with imbeciles.

What would happen in this meeting of minds? This global power house of football knowledge? These guardians of Blackburn Rovers Football Club? These bastions (I did say bastions, didn’t I?) of forward thinking and progressive “transition”?

Well, no one knows. I think there was some pulling of hair and one of them got a Chinese burn, Derek’s glasses might have been knocked off at one stage and someone pulled someone else’s jumper. Ultimately, though, it was no one’s fault. Everyone probably just blamed each other and that was it. Although what they were at fault for, again, no one knows. Possibly the dire league position and the loss of millions of pounds? Anyway, it can’t have been that bad as they all kept their jobs.

Genius, utter genius. Gary Bowyer taken out of the country, leaving a guy (no disrespect to Terry McPhillips) who was looking after the U18’s a few months

ago, to get the team ready for two massive home games.

Wednesday 10th April – Hot on the heels of Shelfclown issuing a statement that none of this was to do with him, the odious Singh did the same. This in response to the Daily Mail article that was issued the previous evening.

Let’s play a game. Do you recognise any of the five footballers that follow the picture of Singh, doing his best David Brent, in the horror story below?

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-2306573/Financial-picture-Blackburn-Venkys-revealed--Exclusive.html

One? Maybe two? Well every credit to you. Any more than that and you’re probably their agent and loaded.

Guess what? They cost us £656,000 in Agents fees! And they’ve started five games. Now that’s not very good is it? Still, never mind. Oh and there’s their wages to consider on top of that as well, and where they get paid.

However, just think, that £656,000 could pay Dixon Etuhu’s wages for 21 weeks.

What was truly frightening though, other than the picture in that article of Steve Kean poking himself in the eye just for kicks, was this statistic:

Sportsmail’s investigation has discovered that Blackburn, who could end up in League One next season, are burdened with a group of 13 players whose

combined wages and agents’ fees will cost the club £30million over the length of their contracts”.

Well done everybody. Ever thought of buying Microsoft Excel? It may help.

Meanwhile, Agnew locked himself away for some frantic private cackling, and (much like his input into anything constructive at BRFC) went almost completely unnoticed.

c69c50a9506391d0b4c44da25971aa97.jpeg

Question: What do you get if you merge these two together?

Friday 12th April: Paul Agnew, all cackled out, was interviewed in the Lancashire Telegraph by new Rovers reporter Chris Flanagan.

There were too many gems to be honest and you do all have lives to lead so I’ll not quote them all. However, “A lot of what we do is very good” – Really?!? Do elaborate please, Paul.

“Rovers can still move forward” – just about, but not very quickly – case in point being Danny Murphy.

Meanwhile, elsewhere in the paper there was something or other about “FFP”, whatever the hell that is, and that relegation would probably be the end of Rovers. Anyway, let’s not worry too much about that. Paul Agnew wasn’t:

“Could the club cope financially if it went into League One?”

“We just need to concentrate on the six games, that’s hypothetical.” Well that’s my mind put to rest. Thanks.

swiss-tony.jpg

Answer: “You know Chris, running Blackburn Rovers is very much like er, erm, er …. it’s all hypothetical”

Saturday 13th April – What’s this then? A football match? Do we really still need to do these? Surely there are more important things at Blackburn Rovers Football Club than the football team and football matches?

Blackburn Rovers 2 Derby County 0 (Rhodes Pen / Dann)

You know what? We did OK here. We won! We flaming needed to. All the others in the division did as well. All of them. Every single one, apart from Derby. We were out of the bottom three again. Thank Heavens for that.

Jordan Rhodes scored a penalty early on to ease the nerves a tad and then Scott Dann added a second just before half time. Derby were poor I thought. But then most of the teams have been poor in this division if you ask me. Which, admittedly, you weren’t.

Next…

Monday 21st April - OK. That’s round about the middle of the review. How you coping so far? What have they done to our club?

I was going to post a link to Alan Shearer scoring goals for fun for Rovers at this point. I just can’t do it. It broke my heart. I’ll spare you. However, if you go to YouTube and type in “Alan Shearer at Blackburn” you can see it.

Tuesday 16th April – Rovers 1 Huddersfield Town 0 (Rhodes)

Ah yes, back to back wins and clean sheets! And what was this? We actually played well in parts! High marks to Williamson, his best game yet for us and also Todd Cane, full of attacking endeavour (I’ve always wanted to get that in, bit of a footballing cliché that).

There was also a rare appearance of the French Viking Warrior God bloke who goes by the name of Gael Givet. He was immaculate, full of defensive endeavour (doesn’t quite work that, does it?).

Go on then? Where has he been? Why hasn’t he been playing? Has everyone at the club forgotten that this man can play left back? We’ve been playing a 7 stone 11 year old the last few games there for Heaven’s sake!

Anyway, it was good stuff and of course Rhodes scored when he wanted to, showing his predatory endeavour (crap this now) and getting on the end of a Dann head down from a corner.

A thoroughly deserved win. Confidence was up. We were now 19th, 2 points above the drop zone with a superior goal difference.

Wednesday 17th April – Oh, give me strength. Where to comment on this nonsense? The Henning Berg contract thing? Was Shelf bloke under investigation by the club? Well not according to a statement issued on the club’s website he wasn’t, remember? It was business as usual. Then they go to court to settle the claim and yes, it’s revealed he is under investigation.

Case adjourned until the 29th. The Judge was completely dismayed. He wants to try being a fan of the club; we practically define the word “dismay”.

We look an absolute shambles of a football club, again. Mainly because we are. Letters / emails from Desai to Shaw were published by BRAG that illustrated that there is a real problem with the senior management not being able to differentiate one’s elbow from one’s arse.

The absolutely freaking hideous idiots. Sell up you fools.

Saturday 20th April – Watford 4 Rovers 0 (Abdi, Deeney x2, Briggs)

In a tight game it was hard to see where a goal was coming from. Rovers did well in containing a tricky Watford team who were pushing for automatic promotion.

Then the second half started.

Still, not to worry. It was only four goals. Our superior goal difference had more of less evaporated. No pressure. Don’t worry about this relegation thing. It was bound to go away all by itself.

Monday 22nd April – Round about now Shebby Singh saw fit to open his bowels in The Press.

With Rovers’ future hanging by a thread what the club really needed at this point was one of its senior figures (*shakes head / cries*) spouting self-indulgent

nonsense to anyone who would listen.

“We find ourselves in a situation that we are fighting to stay in the Championship and I would not like to say anything to disrupt that”. Well shut up then.

“There are people over there who would not be able to run a bar, and they think they can run a club so I wouldn’t pay any attention or waste my time on them.”

This is Shebby Singh, Blackburn Rovers’ Global Advisor, who can’t even arrange a visa to be in the country for the end of the season and attend a court case, which the club lost, and at which he should have been a key witness. His stunning hypocrisy is quite simply beyond belief and an insult to all human life.

You can read more here...

http://www.goal.com/en-india/news/137/england/2013/04/22/3919175/every-tom-dick-and-harry-thinks-they-can-own-the-club?source=breakingnews&ICID=HP_BN_7

And this was very good…

http://www.ibtimes.com/sportsnet/shebby-singh-tyrannical-leader-blackburn-rovers-just-dont-need-1207931

For no reason whatsoever, other than it might just calm you down a bit after reading the above, here’s a clip of a man playing a bass guitar. Go on turn it right up…

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kY_iJw_M3lA

Tuesday 23rd April – Millwall 1 Rovers 2 (Osbourne – OG, Rhodes (Pen))

Anyway, it was away from the Shebby Singh ego-show and back to the cursed football. This really was it now. This was our game in hand, a defeat would not have been good to say the least. You know what though, of course you do, they only went and won.

One nil down at half time. It was the end of the world. The players had bottled it, they probably weren’t bothered. Spineless.

Then Own Goal cropped up (how important was this goal?) and scored from a Jones corner. Great stuff. Rovers were on top and were playing some good stuff it said as I followed the game on Twitter. “Penalty to Rovers!” Oh God. Don’t miss Jordan! Fortunately he wanted to score, so he did. 2-1 Rovers.

Eight minutes of injury time, Dunny was stretchered off, ending his season. Still Rovers hung on. The inevitable late opposition goal for once never happened.

Surely we were safe now? They think it’s all over…

Saturday 27th April – Rovers 1 Palace 1 (Rhodes – Dobbie)

Now it is. Palace took the lead on the 30 minute mark when a big gap opened in the heart of our defence, a plane must have flown over or something distracting our defenders. Jordan Rhodes equalised on the stroke of half time with a very well taken lob over the keeper. Ice in his veins that lad. He really should get that looked at in the summer, though. It can’t be healthy.

Only a 14 goal drubbing at Birmingham would see Rovers relegated now, and even then other results would need to go against us, Ste would buy some chips at half time and some planets would need to align.

The odds were just under 1000-1 (100,000-1 with the chips). I’m sure some people in Malaysia and India were scratching their chins thinking about those odds.

Monday 29th April – Back to the High Court.

Obviously, Rovers were told to pay up Berg’s contract. Pretending to be a bit thick and naïve unfortunately doesn’t cut it in a court of law – but is welcomed with open arms by the FA, Premier League and Football League, obviously. Oh and the Walker Trust.

http://www.independent.co.uk/sport/football/football-league/blackburn-ordered-to-pay-henning-berg-after-case-is-thrown-out-of-the-high-court-8594720.html

“Out of Control” was the club’s defence, ironically. Just as it was for 99% of the time Steve Kean was manager.

Their barrister, Neil Berragan QC, effectively conceded that the owners are powerless to stop Shaw running their club or suspend him until they have completed a disciplinary investigation into his conduct.”

‘There is a shambles at the heart of the club. The owners, based abroad, are in direct conflict with a managing director who is in de facto control of the club and who continues to act without authority and in his self interest,’ he said. ‘The owners are seeking to exercise control but are being frustrated in doing so.’

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-2315454/Blackburn-admit-shambles-Henning-Berg-court-case.html

Shaw is acting without authority and in his own self-interest? Hmmm. Let me see. Maybe they should sack him then? Failure to do so, or even ponder the decision, which of course they are doing, only points to the bleeding obvious (see final paragraph). Paul Hunt was sacked quickly enough when he upset the apple cart wasn’t he?

How very strange.

Friday 3rd May – The Lancashire Telegraph advertising hoardings proclaim “Rovers to bring in new chief”. This was probably a typo on their part and a new head cook will be brought in at some point who will also be told to run the entire football club.

Saturday 4th May – Birmingham City 1 Rovers 1

Rhodes scored. As he does. When he wants. Which is quite often and is just as well really.

We finished in 17th place, Four points above the relegation places in the end. Ten points outside the play offs. And that, as they say, was that.

What next then? Well anything could happen with these buffoons running / ruining the club. Let’s hope we still have one to support next season. Read the below, if you haven’t already. I don’t think those who “run” the game would give a damn either way…

http://www.sportingintelligence.com/2013/04/30/tell-me-why-english-football%E2%80%99s-governing-bodies-keep-buck-passing-the-blackburn-farce-300401/

Overall season summary: Very poor, very poor indeed.

Men of the season: Jordan Rhodes and Gary Bowyer.

Goal / Celebration of the Season: Dunny v that lot.

A Good Thing That You May Have Already Forgotten Award: Jordan Rhodes equalling the club record for scoring in consecutive league games.

Idiots of the season: Venky’s, Singh, Agnew, Shaw.

The Contract Negotiation / Taking Candy From A Baby Award: Henning Berg’s representatives.

The Vince Grella Hiding Award: Dixon Etuhu

The Nick Clegg “What Does He Actually Do?!?” Award: Paul Aginew

The Daily Mirror’s Brian Reade Manager of The Year / Man Of Dignity - Yet Strangely Still Out of Work for Some Reason or Other Award: Steve Kean

The Weakest Contractual Excuse for Not Playing One of Our Better Players Award: Martin Olsson’s poorly eye.

For Quite Spectacularly Putting Your Foot In It EVERY Single Time Without Fail Someone Sticks a Microphone Under Your ‘Tache Award: Shebby

Singh.

The We Have Nothing To Do With Any Of This Whatsoever I Don’t Know Why You Keep Asking Me About It But My Name Keeps Cropping Up Award: Yes, well, like I’m going to name names – but EVERYONE knows, you know.

Click here to view the article

Source: New Article -> April to Season End Review

Glenn

Blackburn Rovers vs. Blackpool Preview

Opening Remarks

Where to begin? Another crazy week in the life of a Rovers fan has come to an end.

Last minute derby day euphoria, managerial changes, potential takeovers, players injured, the future outlook looking even more bleak, all in a weeks work for those in power at Ewood, and another week where Roverites are left scratching their heads, and questioning why on earth it is that we 'keep the faith'.

I had grand plans for this preview, Ince vs. Appleton, the ex-Rovers manager vs. the ex-Tangerines manager, two local clubs, who after years apart, had played a couple of cracking matches against each other in the Premier League and that a friendly rivalry was building up to a crucial match for both teams who are flirting with relegation despite being the early favourites and early pace setters in the npower Championship this season.

But then Tuesday happened, and once again I'm fighting to pick my self up off the floor and get enthusiastic about yet another game with more disruptions, more protests and more bad press and national humiliation.

Do we care? Of course we do, but for pushing two and a half years now we've been taken for granted, treat with disdain and been left to front up to the problems that are out of our control. Ironically if we were the animals were portrayed to be, the RSPCA would have been called in due to inhumane treatment!

Where will we be a week from now? My guesses in order of likelyhood;

The caretaker Gary ''Tony Parkes Mk2'' Bowyer will be in charge.

Shebby will be back in the limelight, whilst maintaining his shrinking violet act.

The Rao family will be thousands of miles away from Ewood doing what they usually do, I think that involves partying with Akon and Ronaldinho.

Protests and Boycotts will dominate the pre-match build up with our 100 independent supporters groups all claiming the moral high ground.

Murphy will ease back into his centre midfield 'deck chair' role

Etuhu will return to the bench

Dunny will be 'rested'

Judan Ali will be grabbing headlines

Jerome will be conning someone out of some money

It'll be bloody freezing for an Easter bank holiday, and,

The sun will rise in the East

The game itself has and will take a back seat, which is a real shame, and probably half the reason why we are where we are. Blackpool are on a sticky run themselves, Holloway, Thompson, Appleton, Thompson again and now Ince are trying to steady the ship at the seaside.

For the purists

Blackpool FC Factfile

Full Name – Blackpool Football Club

Nicknames – Tangerines, Seasiders, Pool (you may also see our less PC board members refer to them as the Donkeylashers or simply Lashers)

Founded – 1887

Ground – Bloomfield Road, capacity 17, 338

All time team – Farm, Armfield, H.Johnston, Gratrix, G.James, Matthews, Hutchinson, Green, Suddick, Mortensen, Mudie

Honours – 1 2nd Division League title, 1 FA Cup, 1 Anglo-Italian Cup, 4 Playoff victories, 3 Automatic promotions.

Songs/Chants - 'Glad All Over' by Dave Clark Five and 'Sea, Sea, Seasiders'.

The History - Memorable games at Ewood vs. Blackpool

19/03/2011 Blackburn Rovers 2-2 Blackpool (Junior Hoilett’s last minute header rescued a vital point for Rovers, who trailed 0-2 at HT)

09/02/1980 Blackburn Rovers 2-0 Blackpool (Last meeting in the old Division 3, now League 1)

29/03/1937 Blackburn Rovers 2-0 Blackpool (Last time to teams played on 29th March also in the 2nd tier)

02/01/1933 Blackburn Rovers 6-5 Blackpool (11 goal inter-war years thriller!)

06/09/1930 Blackburn Rovers 5-0 Blackpool (Biggest ever league win over Blackpool)

Overall Record at Ewood

Blackburn 10 wins – Blackpool 5 wins – 7 Draws – Rovers 43 goals – Blackpool 28 goals

Interestingly, Rovers have only won twice (competitive matches) at Bloomfield Road in the club's history!

Rovers/Blackpool lineup

(**missing a Goalkeeper**), Grayson, Hendry, Herbert Jones, A.Wright, Ainscow, B.Ferguson, J.Douglas, Beattie, DJ Campbell, Pickering

Subs - Burgess, Blackman, Broomes, Danns, Warhurst, Fenton, Coughlin

Managers - Allardyce, Parkes, Appleton, Ince

More to come....

Source: Blackburn Rovers vs. Blackpool

Glenn

I realise you'd all love to believe I'm sat in a darkened room, bottle of pills and razor blade in hand, I'm not.

It was disappointing to 'lose' like that but it's football it happens. You may ask how can I be so philosophical about it, we'll let me tell you. Firstly it isn't as though we aren't used to it is it? But the biggest single thing that makes it so easy to be relaxed about it is the fact that you are so massively relieved to have stabbed 2 draws in games, both of which, if you are honest, you all know you should have lost. It highlights so vividly just how far you've fallen under the new owners.

In the end it is a point towards our survival, we probably need one more win so we should be ok - to the clown who says we are going down, you do know you are still 3 points behind us, game in hand or not? Of we are at risk then you are even more so.

As for those claiming the ref gave us all the decisions? Dunn possibly a yard offside, Hanley not given his second yellow etc etc. as usual both fans feel aggrieved by the ref, it is ever thus. Little doubt that our dozy left back jumping into silly tackles, when already booked, cost us the game. I could understand it if he was taking one for the team, stopping somebody running through on goal etc but it was in a nothing area really.

Oh well, assuming we both do survive then we get another 2 chances next season but I do feel this was year to do it.

Source: Preview of Burnley game. [H] 17th March.

Tom

Rovers Trust is pleased to announce the start of the process to elect a Board from amongst its members to take the Trust further.

Any member can stand for election - nominations must be in by 31st March. We will be electing two Co-Chairs and six Board members. The election will take place under model rules prepared by Supporters Direct, the Government sponsored body charged with developing supporters trusts and increasing fan involvement in sporting clubs.

Any current Trust member over 18 or anyone who joins the Trust before 31st March will have a vote in the election. You will be able to vote electronically, by post or in person at an EGM in early June, when the election will be finalised.

This is a link to the press release -http://www.roverstrust.com/2013/03/14/vote-is-on-for-blackburn-rovers-fans-top-team/

From here you will also find links to the full election rules.

I can answer any questions either posted here or via a pm.

Source: Rovers Trust Elections

Glenn

Reading this board is like reading ours. Negative, dimwitted tactics, hoofball, lethal striker left to rot, fans past caring...

It's been rebranded 'El Crapico' on the Dingle forum. I'd put everything on a 0-0, with over-excited police outnumbering apathetic fans.

Just as a side note, if we do finally win, your '34 years' will immediately become our '3 years', using the same calculating method I guess. All very hypothetical right now seeing as how scoring goals is way down Dyche's list of priorities.

Source: Preview of Burnley game. [H] 17th March.

Glenn

I'm not directing the blame at the supporters for how the team played or for the management over the club, both of those topics have and will be covered ad nauseum, but this needs to be spoken about. We just had 10k show up for a winnable quarterfinal. You can say what you want about reasons for walking away, there are many legitimate ones, but if you do care about the club and want it to exist then you have to take a seriously look at how stayaways might impact the future.

Eddie, the situation is crystal clear. While the Indians own the club and continue to destroy it the fans won't return. Venkys will never be accepted by the people of Blackburn and if they attempt to recoup their losses by putting prices up next season then 10,000 will seem like a huge gate. Personally, I see no end to this spiral of decline until the Indian mob sell up and leave.

Tonight was the worst I have felt as a Rovers supporter in over half a century. We were discussing after the match that we were poor in the early 70s in the Third Division but at least the players, although not very good, put some effort into the game. Perhaps the fact that they lived locally and often mixed with fans had something to do with it. Apart from Dunny how many of these overpaid prima donnas really care about the club? After this game they will have got into their expensive cars and driven home to their fancy houses in Cheshire and the fat pay cheque will arrive at the end of the month win, lose or draw.

The only crumb of comfort is that we won't have to put up with the sight of Desai, the brothers Grimm and Shebby lording it around Wembley.

Source: Millwall [H]; 13/3/2013. F.A. Cup Quarter-Final Replay

Glenn

Absolutely nothing. But it has a bearing on whether you'd want to go and actually watch it as opposed to sitting in a pub/watching it at home. The difference between Appleton and Allardyce in this regard is that we scored goals and won games with Big Sam, which we currently do not do with Appleton. I don't care if he plays the most boring football on the planet as long as we score a goal or two and win.

If you can't be arsed to attend a home FA Cup quarter-final replay with a favourable semi at stake then you cannot call yourself a supporter. Hope you enjoy watching it on TV.

Source: Millwall [H]; 13/3/2013. F.A. Cup Quarter-Final Replay

Glenn

I thought most of our lads were up for a game and didn't roll over against a Millwall team who I saw completely beat us in all departments at Ewood earlier in the season.

We were willing to fight for the ball and did not allow Millwall an easy ride which, I guess, must be to Appleton's orders and therefore to his credit.

Conditions were difficult and we hit the woodwork and it's a replay in the quarters of the FA Cup with a semi-final against Wigan at stake.

If they can take confidence from the way they played, even though the skill wasn't there, then I can see us getting a result on Wednesday.

The key is to match Millwall for tempo and tackles. Rhodes will always get a chance and he wasn't too fat off with his shot yesterday that just went over.

If Apleton is getting this squad to believe in themselves and work for each other then FA Cup nights and derby matches are exactly what they need to enjoy their football again. Same for us fans as well.

Looking forward to Wednesday and Sunday.

Source: Millwall [H]; 13/3/2013. F.A. Cup Quarter-Final Replay

Glenn

INTRODUCTION.

So; the day after we should have been playing for three Championship points at The Den [that’s its present name although it was known as The New Den for some time after it opened in 1993], we find ourselves there competing with Millwall instead for a place in the F.A. Cup semi-finals. They aren’t a club which we’ve played that often over the years, either in the League or the F.A. Cup, and we’ve never met in the Football League Cup.

If you needed reminding, Millwall fans have a particular reputation, to which their response seems to be summed up in the song, “No-one likes us; we don’t care!” That’s why I’ve combined the “How to get there” and the “Where to drink” sections of this preview. One Monday evening in October 1976, the BBC “Panorama” programme did a feature on football hooliganism, focussing on Millwall, the reputation of whose “F Troop” fans, including their hatred of West Ham United, was well-known, even back then.

The programme included shots from their home game against us a couple of days previously. In those days, the

grounds weren’t segregated and, that weekend, coincidentally, one of my pals and I were visiting his eldest brother and family who lived not far away. Millwall lost that game to a Bobby Svarc goal [just over half an hour into the game, if memory serves], but there was no way that anyone could have told that the three of us on the non-segregated terracing were Rovers fans until we were safely locked into his brother’s car and moving, back towards the brother’s home. As the coward I am :glare: , I’ve still not stopped being mocked for my phony South London accent that afternoon almost 36½ years ago!

Their present ground was the first to be built in the aftermath of the Hillsborough disaster and “was designed with effective crowd management in mind [given Millwall's crowd problems at the Old Den], with the escape routes being short and direct.”

[i quote Wikipedia!]

HISTORY.

F.A. Cup.

As far as the F.A. Cup’s concerned, we’ve only met on two occasions, both in London: once at the [Old] Den in 1979/80; once at the present ground in 2001/02, when a sad old geezer like yours truly could “tick” another ground where he’s seen This Great Club Of Ours.

We won both games: the Third Round tie in 1980 got us through to an away game at Anfield, which Liverpool won; while the reward for our Fourth Round win in 2002 was an away game at Middlesbrough, which they won. That doesn’t bode well if we win this tie; does it?!

Millwall have a good record in the F.A. Cup in recent years; being losing Finalists to Manchester United in 2003/04 and getting to the 5th Round again last season.

COMMON LINKS.

The two names which immediately spring to mind in this context are Lucas Neill and Steven Reid, both of whom we signed from Millwall.

We signed Neill, who’s now back in Australia playing for in the A-League for the same Sydney team as Brett Emerton, in 2001. He stayed with us for six years and, according to Wikipedia, he was well-regarded by us “largely due to his never-say-die, determined attitude.” However, the same source notes that, although “once a cult hero at Blackburn, [he] left under

something of a storm and is now extremely unpopular amongst Blackburn fans.”

Do the words, “one”, “greedy” and “b’stard” ring any bells?! ^_^

He went on to play for West Ham and Everton, from where he went on to Galatasaray in Turkey. He then went on to play for two clubs in the United Arab Emirates [Al Jazira, and Al Wasl] before joining Sydney in the A-League last month.

I began this Preview a couple of weeks ago and I’m grateful to John Leigh of BRANZ for the following comment on him: “Neill makes his debut for Sydney FC tomorrow [24th February] in Melbourne against the club he spurned - Melbourne Heart. So

sorry; can't give much of snap update, other than to say he seems set to receive a mixed reaction; Sydney are a very ordinary team (even with Del Piero) and Emerton is a very ordinary player within that very ordinary team.”

“Seems set to receive a mixed reaction”? Lucas Neill? Surely not! ;-) I checked the A-League website afterwards

where I read the following:

the whole saga surrounding Lucas Neill has only added further spice to this clash.

The Socceroos skipper looked set to join John Aloisi's side last weekend only for a last-minute change of (excuse the pun) heart seeing him join the Sky Blues. The decision infuriated Heart officials and fans and they are sure to let Neill know about it on Sunday afternoon

.”

A couple of seasons later, we also signed Reidy from Millwall. He had a fairly short debut for us, being shown a red card 12 minutes after coming on as a substitute for Vratislav Gresko in a game at Bolton in 2003. He scored a cracking goal against Wigan Athletic, which won “Goal of the month” in December 2005 and his goal in a 1-0 win in our penultimate game of that season at Ewood against Chelsea clinched our place in the following season’s UEFA Cup.

Unfortunately, he had a lot of injuries during his time with us; he missed most of the 2006/07 season with a back injury, then a cruciate ligament injury and missed most of 2008/09 season because of a knee injury. He then went on loan, first to Q.P.R., then to West Bromwich Albion, for whom he signed when they won promotion to the Premier League in 2010.

OPPONENTS’ OPINION.

As I don’t know any Millwall fans; and, as their equivalent Forums to this Message Board which I visited anonymously seem, erm, how can I put this, a bit “assertive”, I’ve decided to dispense with this section of the Preview.

1] HOW TO GET THERE; AND 2] WHERE TO DRINK [iF YOU MUST!].

1] As noted above, Millwall fans don’t have the best reputation, which is why the Wikipedia page on “The Den” includes the

following guidance, which I’ve augmented, for those fans making their own way to the game:

The Den is served by the South Bermondsey railway station [trains every half hour from London Bridge station],

which is a five-minute walk away from the ground.
Away suppo
rters have their own walkway link, which is available to them on match days. If unable to travel by train, it's recommended away supporters travel to the ground by official coach. There are no official car parking facilities for supporters.
[My emphasis.]

HOWEVER

The game has now been re-scheduled to Sunday 10th March and, guess what? South Bermondsey station is closed next Sunday. [Good planning by the F.A. & Transport for London, eh?]
:wacko:

is a link to the Rovers'
website about alternative travel arrangements for those fans planning to travel from the Blackburn area.

For those fans who live in that part of London,
and feel confident enough to try this
, there’s also a London bus route [ P 12] between Surrey Quays and Brockley Rise, stopping in Ilderton Road, a couple of minutes’ walk from the ground. There’s a frequent service from London Bridge to Surrey Quays station.

2] As ever in one of m1st previews, the following guidance on where to drink is extracted from www.footballguide.com

Again, I’ve highlighted information which seems particularly relevant for the safety of our travelling fans
.

There are not many pubs located near to the stadium and those should be avoided by away supporters. If travelling by train then it is probably best to grab a beer around London Bridge before moving onto the ground. I would advise keeping any colours covered, even when drinking in the London Bridge area.
[Again, I’ve emphasised this bit.] There are bars at the back of the stands at the stadium, that serve alcohol as well as some decent food such as chicken and chips.

“Chris Lynskey a visiting Scunthorpe United fan recommends; 'The Shipwright Arms on Tooley Street, near London Bridge. Come out of London Bridge tube station, turn right and its only 200yds down the road on your right hand side.

A lovely little pub which also serves food. We left the pub at 2.15pm to go and catch the train to the stadium and made it comfortably for kick off'.

“On the Borough High Street by London Bridge is the Barrow Boy & Banker, which is a Fullers pub and has the benefit of a large screen showing SKY Sports. Further down the High Street is the Borough Market, which on nearby Stoney Street is situated the legendary Market Porter pub. This pub is also a regular listing in the CAMRA Good Beer Guide and always has 9 real ales on tap. Mick Hubbard adds; 'Also on Borough High Street is the George Inn, which is owned and leased by the National Trust. It is an outstandingly beautiful building, and the pub itself retains its wooden flooring and wall panelling. It serves its own ‘George Ale’ which went down nicely'.”

CURRENT FORM.

Millwall were drawn at home for their first two Cup ties this season: they beat Knob End 1-0 in the Third Round before beating Aston Villa 2-1. That win led them to an away tie in their Fifth Round game, against the non-Leaguers of Luton Town, a game

they won fairly comfortably, 3-0.

I’m writing this before our game at Bolton and Millwall’s at home to Wolves both due to be played on Tuesday. Neither team is in what could be called “a rich vein of League form”. If you look at the last 10 League games, as shown on the BBC Sport website, they’ve only picked up 7 points out of the last 30, two fewer than us.

It’s a similar gap in terms of the more commonly shown “Last 6 matches” table. Millwall have only collected 3 points from their last 6 League games, with a win at Middlesbrough a week last Saturday. Despite our recent League slump, we’ve 5 points [a win and two draws] from our last 6 games. The worrying thing for us, though, is that win was 6 games ago, at home to Ipswich. The two draws are also from among the earlier of those 6 games, making the current form difficult to analyse.

SATURDAY’S GAME.

All in all, this is a really difficult match to call. Two teams in the Championship mid-table and neither in the best of form. If we’d met in the Fourth Round when we seemed to be “flying”, I’d have tipped Rovers to win with much more confidence

than I can on the morning after the Peterborough defeat. I certainly never want to see again the team which began that game; but we can’t play the team who began the second half because Campbell, Jones and Stewart are all Cup-tied.

So, to kick the discussion off and with fingers firmly crossed, this is the team I’d have starting the game:

Kean;

Henley, Dann, Hanley, Rekik;

Bentley, Lowe [reluctantly], A.N. Other [so long as it isn’t spelt “M u r p h y”], Pedersen;

Nuno Gomes, Rhodes.

Source: Millwall [A]; 10/3/2013. F.A. Cup Quarter-Final.

Glenn

From: February Review

February Review

Welcome back. This time it was February, that shortest and most peculiar of months. One that throws an extra day in completely at random, seemingly whenever it feels like it, every few years, ‘cause it can. A very strange month then. Almost psychotic in its approach to not having anything like the normal amount of days in it, all in all a bit of a moody bitch.

February was also a big month for Blackburn Rovers as well. If we were going to make a bid for the Play Offs then round about now was the time to do it. Now or January in all honesty.

If we were going to get into the top six then Jordan Rhodes, a man who apparently only scores when he wants, could perhaps avail himself to do so a bit more often? It would help. Perhaps if he saw fit to score five in the first ten minutes of games we would all be a lot happier. But no, not Jordan Rhodes, he scores when he wants, not when we want him to.

I wonder if Jordan was born in February?

Friday 1st February

Those of you with memories and heads will recall that there were a few, er, “issues” with the end of the January transfer window. Although a full explanation was not forthcoming from the powers that be at the club it was widely assumed that there was an issue with the fax machine. Well, when I say “widely assumed” I mean I made that up for the purposes of this post / column / blog / gibberish.

To ensure there would be no further “issues”, a new state of the art fax machine was brought to the club and the old one taken away and beaten into tiny pieces behind the Riverside by hired hoods.

Carefully chosen by Venky’s after they had a quick butchers on e-bay, it was thought that the new fax machine would bring Rovers kicking and screaming, whilst making ridiculously loud squealing noises, into the 19th Century.

WFIL-FAX.jpg

New Fax Machine “The Beast” - 4.5 year contract, 40K a week, no medical. Can’t play central midfield: Paul Agnew, pictured, at the controls of “The Beast” on February 6th. Diligently directing fax operations and other stuff.

Saturday 2nd February – Rovers 2 Bristol City 0 (Rhodes and Rhodes)

So after the debacle that was the end of the transfer window, Rovers returned to action with the visit of lowly Bristol City. And our highly paid men put them to the blue and white sword with a minimum of fuss, this despite Rovers not having one of their better days.

Jordan Rhodes, of course, scored in the first half. This guy is dynamite in front of goal. I actually think he’s getting better, better movement, stronger.

And yes, I will say it as well, in case you forgot, his second goal in the 2nd half was exactly like Shearer - but with more finesse. Whereas Shearer would have just blasted the second goal past, or even at, a terrified goalkeeper, Rhodes just nonchalantly placed the ball in the bottom corner. He made it look easy. However, it was the run that most reminded me of Big Al. Strong, and clever, he made sure his body was between the ball and the hapless defender, leaving him no chance.

Good stuff all round. A comfortable win to say the least.

Tuesday 5th February – Obviously. Jordan Rhodes turned 23.

Thursday 7th February – Around about this date anyway, Andy Cryer, Rovers correspondent for the Lancashire Telegraph announced that he is leaving. Always a very negative man Andy, particularly when dealing with patronising bullsh1tters and liars, he has put a good stint in. I’m sure that if he ever covers another football club again in his career it won’t be as mad as this one has been over the last couple of years.

Saturday 9th February – Rovers 1 Ipswich Town 0 – (Rhodes)

Disciplined. Very disciplined. Workmanlike. A workhorse of a performance. Controlled. Solid, Accomplished. Professional. Tight. Yet lacking in flair.

Still who cares! We tried the Barcelona way two caretakers and a manager ago and for some strange reason it just didn’t work.

Jordan Rhodes scored the winner, making the keeper score using his own foot. That’s how good this guy is. Not only does he score when he wants but he can make other people score when they don’t want. That’s what 8 million can buy you these days. Mind control.

Not only that but he claimed the goal and equalled the club record for scoring in consecutive league matches! Very well done, Sir!

A bright spot on a cliched utterly miserable existence.

Also on this day, DJ Campbell (“The Beast’s” first loan signing), resplendent with comedy Shebby Singh ‘tache, made his debut. Not only that but he’s kept the ‘tache on ever since! Brilliant!

And they say there’s no characters in football anymore.

Like a rising majestic thing, we rose majestically to seventh in the table and all of a sudden things were looking rather promising. One or two fans were even described as happy in some quarters.

How foolish of them, misery is the order of the day. As we all know, it’s one disappointment after another following Rovers. Two relegations in 33 years are hardly glossed over by the two promotions, two Charity Shield appearances, Full Members Cup Win, umpteen European trips, FA Cup Semi Finals, League Cup Win, winning promotion at Wembley and winning the Premier League. They always let us down, always. Anyway, moving on...

Tuesday 12th February – Brighton and Hove Albion 1 Rovers 1 (Vincent / Rhodes Dann)

The misery of having to travel down the motorway for a meeting at Heathrow – an evening meeting at that (no, not that sort of meeting) – and stopping at Norton Canes services to see many a brave and hardy Rovers fan en route. A great effort from those fans.

While I’m here a big shout out to BRFCS person Kiwiwannabe (or to give her her proper name Kiwi Wannabe) for entering the 92 Club. Hats off!

I’ve not a clue about this game. Let’s say / pretend it was a fantastic attacking performance with our midfield dictating play. Dann scored a header from 35 yards and Brighton equalised in the 98th minute with a penalty.

If you want match reports do read Parson Blue’s. Quality.

Thursday 14th February. Just before the window slammed shut, for a bit, Rovers re-entered the market and “The Beast” spluttered into life once more. Hot on the heels of Lee Williamson (who?!?), Karim Rekik signed on loan from Man City. A good player someone once said I think.

But it didn’t end there…

Friday 15th February. Aggers and Shelfy continued to work their little cotton socks off to keep that mother’s fire burning for seven straight hours. Coal, numerous contracts and applications were thrown in. Frivolous and carefree was their approach.

At the end of it all it was worth it: a piece of paper dropped out. On it was the name “David Bentley”, he was ours on loan, all sobered up after his trip to Spain. Or was it Spurs? Anyway, welcome back to Rovers (it’s changed a bit) and welcome back to football David.

Saturday 16th February – Michael Appleton was on Football Focus, a football programme on BBC1 I’ve been told. It struck me that he’s only 37, and that’s the same age as Danny Murphy. I wondered how he could command respect in that case? However, by the end of the interview it was clear that he is very much the boss, very much in charge and not a person you would want to cross.

That’s what my perception was anyway – and how you are perceived is so very important, right? Hey I might be wrong, but that’s what I perceived at the time.

"We've not had any contact from Shebby since I've been here," Appleton said. "He knows my number. He knows where I am. I'm not sure what he's doing at the moment but, if he's global advising, he's certainly not advising me."

Make of that what you will.

Elsewhere on this day: FA Cup 5th Round: Arsenal 0 Rovers 1

A good away win. Not bad. Only Arsenal, though, wasn’t it? I mean Bayern Munich got three a couple of days later. Big Colin Ego scored for us hitting the ball into the ground and up into the net off a post, leaving the keeper with no chance!

One of the happier days during the Venky’s debacle to say the very least. Into the last 8 we go.

Sunday 17th February - Around about now Appy Appleton started to say things along the lines of “I’d be very surprised it we don’t have a couple of new loan signings in for the Hull game..” and such like. That’s two more loan signings by the way.

We draw Millwall Away in the Cup. Yeah, I know you know.

Tuesday 19th February - And then, as they always let us down, all the time, ever. REALITY CHECK…… Hull City 2 - 0 Rovers (Elmo Hamady, Gedo)

I didn’t turn up, neither did the team. The players must be saving themselves for the Millwall and burnley games, eh?

SOUTH-AFRICA-TIGER-YAWNING.jpg

A Tiger: Finding it all a bit too….

Thursday 21st February - Appleton mentioned that he would be very surprised if he didn’t have a couple of loan signings in for the Leeds match.

Saturday 23rd February - Rovers 0 - 0 Dirty Leeds United

Solid, dire, turgid, no attacking options, no goal off the keeper. Could have lost it, could have done better. Could have written more words.

Didn’t.

Sunday 24th February – despite the nil-nil draw with dirty Leeds, all was not lost. Appleton was talking positively and explained that he was optimistic that Rovers would probably have a couple of loan signings in ready for Leicester City away.

Tuesday 26th February - Leicester City 3 Rovers 0 (three headers, Someone, Someone and then Someone Else)

I didn’t turn up, neither did the team. The players must be saving themselves for the Millwall and burnley games, eh?

Hopefully they’ll remember how to jump by then.

1087755115.jpg

A Fox: …..Easy

Wednesday 27th February – Rovers do not announce that they won’t be finding the 120,000 pounds needed to fund the Rovers Ladies team to play in the second level of their league. Preferring instead to not do the paperwork required and instead pay Shebby Singh that amount every calendar quarter in order to support whatever it is he is doing at the moment on a global scale.

Meanwhile, forgotten bearded man / tramp Gael Givet, aka the French God of Thunder and Alleged Stroppiness, tells the Big Issue that if it wasn’t for his wife and family he would probably have hung himself by now. Blimey. steady on Gael!! Just stop reading BRFCS for a bit, that’ll cheer you up!

Thursday 28th February. Not so Appy Appleton tells the LT that the players now need to shape up if they want to play a part next season. Otherwise, presumably, the club would pay up their contracts and let them leave. Any who would want that hanging over them? Ruthless Rovers.

After all with the exception of a handful would you buy many of them?

Appleton also stated, it had been a couple of days after all, that he would be absolutely gobsmacked if he didn’t have at least two players in ready for the big game against Peterborough United. Rumours that with Staples closing down “The Beast” had stopped working were unfounded, probably. The fact that you can’t buy “Beast Paper” refills anywhere else in Western Europe, has had no effect whatsoever on the club’s intention to bring in a couple of loan signings.

Finally a slight departure. There was a thread last month that stated Venky’s had put 24 million of their own money into the club. Good news, eh? Shouldn’t we all be happy?

It was barely mentioned. It certainly wasn’t celebrated. There is no trust here, and there never will be. Bridges have long since been burnt. The following post from BRFCS member Paul kind of sums up exactly where we are as a club, I hope you don’t mind my quoting you, Paul. He is only surmising here but let’s be honest, I bet he’s not far wrong, and if you think he's wrong can you please show me something to base your confidence on?

“The response to this is Venkys appear to already have put the 25m into the club. VLL recently issued 24,388,000 shares at 1 each. Presumably this is to cover current operating losses. How next season will be dealt with is anyone's guess.

I'd agree we need to clear out many highly paid players but this realistically means paying up their contracts. How many on here would accept a 50% or more pay cut to leave Ewood?

The REALLY BIG question which needs answering is where has the 24m come from?

The Raos own pockets?

Outside investors? A new shareholder would have to be registered

Mortgaging the parachute payments?

I believe this is our situation. I think we have borrowed against the next two years parachute payments, 24m as it happens, to fund the current operating losses.

Rhodes will be sold this summer to begin funding next season's operating losses.

Happy days. Forget sorting out the midfield, the bank account needs fettling first.”

Ah yes, the fettling midfield. We have Murphy, Etuhu, Dunn, Lowe, Morten, Williamson, Bentley. That’s 7 players alone there (I’ve not even looked at the young players) who can / do play central midfield. How much do we pay those players a year? I bet it’s over half of next year’s parachute payment (£16m) and certainly more than the following year's (£8m).

Anyway, on that rather sobering, fun free thought… It’s Peterborough at home today!… and we brought in a new player on loan yesterday in Cameron Stewart, left winger, from Hull. So there you go.

This time next month let’s hope we’ve beaten them and booked a place at Wembley. It’s a big month March, it’s certainly got more days in it.

Summary at the end of February:

Played: 34

Goal Difference: -1

Points: 45

Position: 11th

FA Cup: W3 D0 L0. GD+6. 100% win record!

Top Goalscorers:

Jordan Rhodes 21

Source: February Review

Glenn

INTRODUCTION.

So; the day after we should have been playing for three Championship points at The Den [that’s its present name although it was known as The New Den for some time after it opened in 1993], we find ourselves there competing with Millwall instead for a place in the F.A. Cup semi-finals. They aren’t a club which we’ve played that often over the years, either in the League or the F.A. Cup, and we’ve never met in the Football League Cup.

If you needed reminding, Millwall fans have a particular reputation, to which their response seems to be summed up in the song, “No-one likes us; we don’t care!” That’s why I’ve combined the “How to get there” and the “Where to drink” sections of this preview. One Monday evening in October 1976, the BBC “Panorama” programme did a feature on football hooliganism, focussing on Millwall, the reputation of whose “F Troop” fans, including their hatred of West Ham United, was well-known, even back then.

The programme included shots from their home game against us a couple of days previously. In those days, the

grounds weren’t segregated and, that weekend, coincidentally, one of my pals and I were visiting his eldest brother and family who lived not far away. Millwall lost that game to a Bobby Svarc goal [just over half an hour into the game, if memory serves], but there was no way that anyone could have told that the three of us on the non-segregated terracing were Rovers fans until we were safely locked into his brother’s car and moving, back towards the brother’s home. As the coward I am :glare: , I’ve still not stopped being mocked for my phony South London accent that afternoon almost 36½ years ago!

Their present ground was the first to be built in the aftermath of the Hillsborough disaster and “was designed with effective crowd management in mind [given Millwall's crowd problems at the Old Den], with the escape routes being short and direct.”

[i quote Wikipedia!]

HISTORY.

F.A. Cup.

As far as the F.A. Cup’s concerned, we’ve only met on two occasions, both in London: once at the [Old] Den in 1979/80; once at the present ground in 2001/02, when a sad old geezer like yours truly could “tick” another ground where he’s seen This Great Club Of Ours.

We won both games: the Third Round tie in 1980 got us through to an away game at Anfield, which Liverpool won; while the reward for our Fourth Round win in 2002 was an away game at Middlesbrough, which they won. That doesn’t bode well if we win this tie; does it?!

Millwall have a good record in the F.A. Cup in recent years; being losing Finalists to Manchester United in 2003/04 and getting to the 5th Round again last season.

COMMON LINKS.

The two names which immediately spring to mind in this context are Lucas Neill and Steven Reid, both of whom we signed from Millwall.

We signed Neill, who’s now back in Australia playing for in the A-League for the same Sydney team as Brett Emerton, in 2001. He stayed with us for six years and, according to Wikipedia, he was well-regarded by us “largely due to his never-say-die, determined attitude.” However, the same source notes that, although “once a cult hero at Blackburn, [he] left under

something of a storm and is now extremely unpopular amongst Blackburn fans.”

Do the words, “one”, “greedy” and “b’stard” ring any bells?! ^_^

He went on to play for West Ham and Everton, from where he went on to Galatasaray in Turkey. He then went on to play for two clubs in the United Arab Emirates [Al Jazira, and Al Wasl] before joining Sydney in the A-League last month.

I began this Preview a couple of weeks ago and I’m grateful to John Leigh of BRANZ for the following comment on him: “Neill makes his debut for Sydney FC tomorrow [24th February] in Melbourne against the club he spurned - Melbourne Heart. So

sorry; can't give much of snap update, other than to say he seems set to receive a mixed reaction; Sydney are a very ordinary team (even with Del Piero) and Emerton is a very ordinary player within that very ordinary team.”

“Seems set to receive a mixed reaction”? Lucas Neill? Surely not! ;-) I checked the A-League website afterwards

where I read the following:

the whole saga surrounding Lucas Neill has only added further spice to this clash.

The Socceroos skipper looked set to join John Aloisi's side last weekend only for a last-minute change of (excuse the pun) heart seeing him join the Sky Blues. The decision infuriated Heart officials and fans and they are sure to let Neill know about it on Sunday afternoon

.”

A couple of seasons later, we also signed Reidy from Millwall. He had a fairly short debut for us, being shown a red card 12 minutes after coming on as a substitute for Vratislav Gresko in a game at Bolton in 2003. He scored a cracking goal against Wigan Athletic, which won “Goal of the month” in December 2005 and his goal in a 1-0 win in our penultimate game of that season at Ewood against Chelsea clinched our place in the following season’s UEFA Cup.

Unfortunately, he had a lot of injuries during his time with us; he missed most of the 2006/07 season with a back injury, then a cruciate ligament injury and missed most of 2008/09 season because of a knee injury. He then went on loan, first to Q.P.R., then to West Bromwich Albion, for whom he signed when they won promotion to the Premier League in 2010.

OPPONENTS’ OPINION.

As I don’t know any Millwall fans; and, as their equivalent Forums to this Message Board which I visited anonymously seem, erm, how can I put this, a bit “assertive”, I’ve decided to dispense with this section of the Preview.

1] HOW TO GET THERE; AND 2] WHERE TO DRINK [iF YOU MUST!].

1] As noted above, Millwall fans don’t have the best reputation, which is why the Wikipedia page on “The Den” includes the

following guidance, which I’ve augmented, for those fans making their own way to the game:

The Den is served by the South Bermondsey railway station [trains every half hour from London Bridge station],

which is a five-minute walk away from the ground.
Away suppo
rters have their own walkway link, which is available to them on match days. If unable to travel by train, it's recommended away supporters travel to the ground by official coach. There are no official car parking facilities for supporters.
[My emphasis.]

HOWEVER

The game has now been re-scheduled to Sunday 10th March and, guess what? South Bermondsey station is closed next Sunday. [Good planning by the F.A. & Transport for London, eh?]
:wacko:

is a link to the Rovers'
website about alternative travel arrangements for those fans planning to travel from the Blackburn area.

For those fans who live in that part of London,
and feel confident enough to try this
, there’s also a London bus route [ P 12] between Surrey Quays and Brockley Rise, stopping in Ilderton Road, a couple of minutes’ walk from the ground. There’s a frequent service from London Bridge to Surrey Quays station.

2] As ever in one of m1st previews, the following guidance on where to drink is extracted from www.footballguide.com

Again, I’ve highlighted information which seems particularly relevant for the safety of our travelling fans
.

There are not many pubs located near to the stadium and those should be avoided by away supporters. If travelling by train then it is probably best to grab a beer around London Bridge before moving onto the ground. I would advise keeping any colours covered, even when drinking in the London Bridge area.
[Again, I’ve emphasised this bit.] There are bars at the back of the stands at the stadium, that serve alcohol as well as some decent food such as chicken and chips.

“Chris Lynskey a visiting Scunthorpe United fan recommends; 'The Shipwright Arms on Tooley Street, near London Bridge. Come out of London Bridge tube station, turn right and its only 200yds down the road on your right hand side.

A lovely little pub which also serves food. We left the pub at 2.15pm to go and catch the train to the stadium and made it comfortably for kick off'.

“On the Borough High Street by London Bridge is the Barrow Boy & Banker, which is a Fullers pub and has the benefit of a large screen showing SKY Sports. Further down the High Street is the Borough Market, which on nearby Stoney Street is situated the legendary Market Porter pub. This pub is also a regular listing in the CAMRA Good Beer Guide and always has 9 real ales on tap. Mick Hubbard adds; 'Also on Borough High Street is the George Inn, which is owned and leased by the National Trust. It is an outstandingly beautiful building, and the pub itself retains its wooden flooring and wall panelling. It serves its own ‘George Ale’ which went down nicely'.”

CURRENT FORM.

Millwall were drawn at home for their first two Cup ties this season: they beat Knob End 1-0 in the Third Round before beating Aston Villa 2-1. That win led them to an away tie in their Fifth Round game, against the non-Leaguers of Luton Town, a game

they won fairly comfortably, 3-0.

I’m writing this before our game at Bolton and Millwall’s at home to Wolves both due to be played on Tuesday. Neither team is in what could be called “a rich vein of League form”. If you look at the last 10 League games, as shown on the BBC Sport website, they’ve only picked up 7 points out of the last 30, two fewer than us.

It’s a similar gap in terms of the more commonly shown “Last 6 matches” table. Millwall have only collected 3 points from their last 6 League games, with a win at Middlesbrough a week last Saturday. Despite our recent League slump, we’ve 5 points [a win and two draws] from our last 6 games. The worrying thing for us, though, is that win was 6 games ago, at home to Ipswich. The two draws are also from among the earlier of those 6 games, making the current form difficult to analyse.

SATURDAY’S GAME.

All in all, this is a really difficult match to call. Two teams in the Championship mid-table and neither in the best of form. If we’d met in the Fourth Round when we seemed to be “flying”, I’d have tipped Rovers to win with much more confidence

than I can on the morning after the Peterborough defeat. I certainly never want to see again the team which began that game; but we can’t play the team who began the second half because Campbell, Jones and Stewart are all Cup-tied.

So, to kick the discussion off and with fingers firmly crossed, this is the team I’d have starting the game:

Kean;

Henley, Dann, Hanley, Rekik;

Bentley, Lowe [reluctantly], A.N. Other [so long as it isn’t spelt “M u r p h y”], Pedersen;

Nuno Gomes, Rhodes.

Source: Millwall [A]; 10/3/2013. F.A. Cup Quarter-Final.

Glenn

Extreme examples rarely prove much. If the truth is such that we would be expelled from the Football League how big would the "problems" be? You really think issues that big can be swept under the carpet indefinitely?

So "yes" I want the truth to come out whatever it is.I think long-term not short-term. I don't base my views on the last performance or the newest signing. I don't forgive Kean/Agnew/ Shaw/ Singh and above all Venkys for what they have done to my Club and I never will.

Last post on this thread from me.

I think this is the classic Catch-22. If the truth helps to destroy the club do we all feel better about it? I suppose the Action Group could run regular trips to Chorley so folk can get their football fix.

At the moment we don't know if anything is being swept under the carpet. Nobody seems willing to say anything in public that actually accuses anyone of anything.

The bottom line is that relegation to League One would be something the club would probably never recover from. The finance required to support the modern day club is much greater than when we last played at that level.

Nobody can argue that Venky's have been anything other than a disaster for this club. However, is it worth killing the club to get rid of them? The trick is to get rid of Venky's but still have a viable Championship club and I'm not sure how that can be done.

Source: Nick Harris' latest tweet

Ste B

From: Back The Badge

It was an ill-conceived flop which mercifully died a death of disinterest and scorn

It's been quite a relief not having to listen to three weeks of the usual sound bites from Mullan, Taylor, Straw, Fish, etc while people argue the toss and having to listen to them claim some form of triumph if the gate is 1500 up on last week, not beyond the bounds of after a decent run with a couple of new signings

As is the case on every other Saturday I'm able, I will make my way with my young daughter to Ewood, carrying out our regular routine hoping that she carries on the family tradition of supporting her dad's/Grandad's/late great-grandad's home town team regardless of who owns them, manages them or what division they are in

If that is all I can put forward when Premier-League-is-the-be-all-and-end-all obsessed BRAG post-1992 glory boys ask me "what did you do to get rid of Kean/Venkys" then I'm rather proud of that

Source: Back The Badge
Ste B

This is probably one of the best podcasts I have listened to regarding the current situation at the club and I urge everyone to listen to it. With all the bickering that goes on between the groups you forget how passionate our fans can be and it's good that Sir Bill is trying to bring everyone together.

Sir Bill asked what we as fans want from the owners to build relationships and suggested an apology would be a good place to start, well it wouldn't do any harm but for me the the first thing they have to do is get it right on the pitch.

I think that Appleton is a good appointment and he seems to be managing the club from top to bottom. He has recognised the fact that the team is un balanced, the recruitment policy was a shambles and he even said that he didn't think it was a good idea for the owners to turn up when they did.

He is talking a lot of sense and he is basically saying it how it is. I think Venkys have to back Appleton and also let him get on with running the football side of things without any interference or distractions from anywhere else within the club.

If we can get a team on the pitch that fans can be proud of again then I think fans will start engaging with the club again.

Source: BRFCS Podcast #57: An Interview With Sir Bill Taylor
Kamy100

From: January Review

January Review

Bang!! Off we go then, hurtling head long like a herd of rabid drunken buffalo into 2013…

Tuesday January 1st 2013 – Rovers 3 Nottingham Forest 0 (Rochina, Rhodes, Kazim-Richards)

Manager-less Rovers played really well in parts, especially in the second half. Well, when I said manger-less they were being looked after by Gary Bowyer – and he had them playing and working and harrying and grafting. It was good stuff and it makes you wonder just what the hell his two predecessors were doing. These are the basics after all.

We took the lead on 48 minutes, Rochina smashing the ball home from 30 yards, after making the defender kick it against his shin. Inspired stuff. Then Jordan Rhodes scored, some deft footwork and an “as quick as you like” finish after taking the ball wide round the keeper and then poking the ball over the line.

Then potentially quote of the year – just 14 hours into the new year. A guy who hadn’t been to Rovers since emigrating to the U.S. a few years ago came along to this game and sat with us in the BBE. 2 – 0 up, bit between our teeth and playing a bit, he casually asked “Is it normally this bad?”

“Bad? Bad!?! This is as good as it gets! In fact after the last two years of that cretin Kean this is bloody brilliant!!”. Then CKR smashed home the third.

You’ve got to laugh – advised my psychiatrist.

Oh and Mr Agnew, if the gate really was 15,490, you’re a life-long Rovers fan.

Elsewhere, despite assurances that a new manager would be appointed by the end of the day, it didn’t happen. So they were lying to us. I’ll just pick myself up off the floor, again.

Of course the rumour mill was in full swing. You name it, they were all doing the rounds.

In no particular order; Peter The Taylor (1/4 on for most of the day), Keegan, O’Leary, Judan bloody Ali, Billy Davies, Kevin MacDonald, Mark Bowen, Mark Hughes, Mark McGhee, Mark Robins, Mark Clattenburg, Karl Robinson, Owen Coyle, Bobby Di Matteo, Captain Haddock and R2D2 well all linked, along with, Steve Kean (100/1- but that was just being totally ridiculous).

Your guess was as good as mine. All I know is that someone somewhere out there is making money on this on Betfair. The process, yet again, was a shambles with rumours that Peter The Taylor had gone directly to the clowns in Pune and he was neither the choice of our esteemed PNE Posse or Shebby “You Know. Ha ha ha ha ha” Singh, our club’s Senior Board members who allegedly can’t even agree on the colour of the sky at night.

Tuesday 1st January – Following the previous day’s comfortable home win, the players working hard and enjoying their football, unnervingly something else happened which can only be described as “quite sensible” and a “good move”. Rovers signed jet heeled Josh King from Manchester United on a two and a half year contract for a nominal fee.

So arguably that was three steps forward in the space of five days (taking into account the win at Barnsley). Fears understandably rose therefore of an impending 2,000 steps back…..

……Which inevitably started with media shy Shebby Singh going back on Radio Lancashire. It was unbelievable stuff, Jeff. “Highlights” from Shebby included:

No more singings required. We have enough players. (Indeed we might, a shame we have half a dozen dire Portuguese players though who aren’t good enough to get a game, isn’t it? Who bought them again? That’s right – someone who doesn’t know what they’re doing).

The new manager would only be given a six month contract which would be reviewed if certain milestones were hit.

No need to replace the three back room coaches that were sacked on Sky Sports News.

Any finally, he won’t subject Gary Bowyer to the abuse Gary would receive if appointed manager.

Shebby also claimed that he was in total control of the club. So it was no great surprise then when…

Thursday 3rd January – Gary Bowyer was appointed first team manager until the end of January.

Also on this day club mascot and serial bench warmer Bruno Ribero (a full back I believe) returned to Brazil. Thanks for all your efforts, Bruno. I hope you and your Agent were well rewarded for a sterling 18 month’s work. Best you get home for a rest. Did you take your T-Shirts out of the Club Shop with you? You might as well have done.

Friday 4th January – Talking of Agents. Further disaster, Myles Anderson left Blackburn Rovers; he had his contract terminated. He’s destined for great things this lad. Remember the name: Myles “Off” Anderson.

This was verging on a good decision made by the club. I had to go for a lie down for a bit.

And that, loyal victims / viewers, is as far as I got with January. Nightmare. Due to work in the main. Normally I write this column as I go along, 5 minutes here, 5 minutes there. Instead I am now left to piece together just what the hell happened at Blackburn Rovers since January 5th ? Can you remember because I can’t ? We played some games I know that much.

So bear with me as I write this today, perhaps some kindly posters can add in the bits I have missed? I did have a few copies of the Lancashire Telegraph, that did help.

I’ll post this today before the match. It’s a well-worn tactic. The FA used it in the week, they announced that Edin Hazard’s ban for bundling over a chav won’t be extended, on the same day that Peter Odemwingie (that’s easy for you to spell) went dogging in a car park near QPR live on Sky Sports and the transfer window closed. Burying bad news I think they call it.

Anyway…

Saturday 5th January – FA Cup 3rd Round. Rovers 2 Bristol City 0

Nope not a clue, can’t remember a thing. Oh yes, I’ve just looked it up, Danny Murphy scored early on with a great strike past the hapless goalkeeper into the top corner. “Rolling back the years”, etc.

Half man / half cow Grant Hanley scored the second in the second half with showing typical predator’s instinct, reacting quicker than the defence to stab home from close range. Job done.

That’ll have to do. We were comfortable I seem to recall and they were poor. 5 and a half people turned up to watch.

Moving on.

Friday 11th January. After the previous two managers proved to be a colossal failure, costing the club millions and millions of pounds, Venky’s decided to go for someone completely different.

They appointed the bald, relatively inexperienced, Michael Appleton.

Prised away from Blackpool on a two and a half year contract, ‘Appy was joined by his assistant, Ashley Westwood.

08Sept25IanBrown.jpg

New Rovers boss Michael Appleton: “Well made up. Double sorted.”

Also on this day: Wolverhampton Wanderererers 1 Rovers 1 (Johnson / Rhodes (pen))

Gary Bowyer and Terry McPhillips took charge of the team for the last time, before departing to look after the reserves and youth teams again. They did a great job, unbeaten. The club needs guys like these two.

The game itself wasn’t the best, hardly surprising really as not only had Rovers appointed a new “gaffer” that week, Wolves had, too: “The Overlord of all Evil ™”, Dean Saunders.

Rovers took the lead through Jordan Rhodes with a penalty to the right hand corner. Second half they came at us and our defence forgot to jump, presenting a free header to Johnson.

1 -1. Next…

Saturday 19th January – Rovers 1 Charlton Addicks 2 (Rhodes / Stephens, Kermitfrog)

Oh dear. This was as poor as you can get, wasn’t it? Dire stuff. No effort whatsoever.

Talking of no effort whatsoever this was the game that the Venky’s came to town. They liked to play their arrival down though, just using two Rolls Royces. One of them was hit by a snow ball on entering the ground. It could have been a lot worse. Perhaps a bucket of bullsh!t? Which let’s face it is all we’ve had from them for the last 2 years – and counting.

Despite having not seen “their baby” for a long time, for two seasons in Desai’s case, Venkys decided to leave on 65 minutes – shortly after Charlton had scored what turned out to be the winner.

In they went to their box and then the light was turned off and they were gone.

Off to Blackpool Airport in order to get away promptly because of the weather – that’s if Shebby “Ha ha ha ha” Singh is to be believed (no laughing at the back) and what he kindly relayed at the 100 Club Dinner a week later. Shebby also revealed that Rovers aren’t losing two million pounds a month, in fact that is “absolute borrocks”. How comforting.

Snowball.jpg

Contract: Terminated.

Tuesday 22nd January – Rovers 1 Brighton & Hove Albion 1 (Rhodes (pen) / Lopez (pen))

Robbed. A much improved performance. It couldn’t be anything other really could it following the previous games shambolic display? An injury time equaliser for the visitors after Goodwillie made, in retrospect, a very stupid challenge (I defended him at the time, said the Charlton player made a meal of it!).

It was much, much better, I actually enjoyed it (apart from the end obviously), there was a plan! Structure! Graft!

Thursday 24th January – The Telegraph loses its rag as Rovers drop Thwaites bitter for Heineken. As one, the “town leaders” and local paper slam the decision on the front page. How refreshing.

Elsewhere Palermo are closing in on Argentine slow coach Mauro Formica, it says here. He always tried his best but it never really happened for him did it?

It also quotes Appy that he will be very disappointed if he can’t add 2 or 3 new players. Yeah well, stand by your bed / fax machine Michael.

Friday 25th January – “NEED FOR NEW FACES” is the headline on the back page of the Telegraph – They’re not wrong there then. There was a picture of ‘Appy ooking like Ian Brown with no hair and a monkey with cramp. Yep, like Ian Brown.

However ‘Appy does point out that Rovers’ squad is “completely unbalanced” - "Our recruitment policy needs improving 10-fold. We have too many players here who are far too similar to each other," he said. "We need to change things here and get some fresh people in."

That was refreshing. Previously everything in the garden was rosy. If anything had gone wrong it was everybody else’s fault rather than down to decisions made by the club. It boded well.

Saturday 26th January – Derby County 0 – Rovers 3 (Colin, Danninho, Rhodes, Moran)

All good stuff apparently! Solid, again we put a shift in! Great news! Dann scored an absolute belter. You won’t hear that very often.

Sunday 27th January – Rovers are safely into the last eight of the FA Cup after being given a bye / drawing Arsenal away in the last 16.

Monday 28th January - Shock news reaches BRFCS.com – Vince Grella retires from football. What, again?!?

Tuesday 29th January – Appy brings in his own back room staff, a luxury not afforded to Henning Berg for some strange reason, but hey that’s Rovers for you these days, strange. Sorry, not strange, shambolic.

Darren Moore, the only man in football with possibly a larger head than one of our centre halves, was brought in as First team coach. Also joining big Darren are John Keeley (Goalkeeper coach), Chris Neville (pies, stretching, Opta, that sort of thing) and Luke Dowling (head of senior scouting / citizens – one for Morten there then).

Tuesday 29th January – Big tattooed Colin Kazim Richards might be off to Turkey, then he might be signing on a long term deal for Rovers. This went on for a bit. At the time of writing I still don’t know. I think he still plays for us.

Wednesday 30th January – “Incoming!” Nobody duck: Rovers signed Anton Forrester, an 18 year old striker from Everton. Presumably to go straight into “The Elite Development squad” (remember that Kean nonsense?).

The only signing of the transfer window I believe? It was almost as though Rovers couldn’t see the wood for the trees…

Thursday 31st January - “ROBINSON SET TO LEAVE EWOOD” stated the LT. He stayed.

Rueben Rochina left to go on loan to Spain – at his own request.

Simon Vukcevic left to become a Monk.

Jordan Slew went to Rotherham on loan.

Amine Linganzi was terminated. A tad harsh it could be argued. OK, maybe not.

Diego Rosado (who?) went to Benfica, again on loan, with an option for them to buy in the summer.

Mauro Formica had already left for Palermo.

All these great players leaving that no one wants to buy. That’s testament to our relegation and fall from grace after the last two years of gross mismanagement.

As for new signings? “Er, em, *cough*, splutter”. No new signings then.

Winger Thomas from Charlton and striker Campbell from QPR were at the club most of the day. As was a bloody DJ !?! Talk about not taking it seriously. When the 11th hour came and went nothing happened. Campbell even went as far as telling reporters he had agreed a 2.5 year contract and that it was a done deal, this was hours before the window was gently closed and locked.

What on earth went on? Were Agnew and Shaw too busy dancing whilst putting up random shelves to fax through the paper work on time? Who exactly was “Directing Operations” on this most crucial of days?

Where the hell was Shebby “£400K per annum Ha Ha Ha Ha” Singh? “It’s not his fault, he was nowhere near the club”, I read somewhere. Why the heck wasn’t he? What exactly is he doing to justify his ridiculous wage?

Q – “How many idiots does it take to sign a couple of players?”

A – “Can we get back to you? One of us is away today…”

Appleton was reportedly heard storming around Ewood shouting “You’re wasting my time lads. Amateurs!! Amateurs!!”

7052669-fax-machine-isolated-on-white-background.jpg

Contract: Terminated

Summary:

Played: 28

Goal Difference: 1

Points: 37

Position:15th

FA Cup: Unbeaten. W2 D0 L0. GD+5.

Top Goalscorers: Rhodes: lots and lots – now beyond calculation.

This post has been promoted to an article

Source: January Review

Tom
If you've heard of the SLA and Patty Hearst, humour me as I weave a tenuously-linked analogy based upon two of my favourite things: Rovers and the '70s.

Now, the SLA were a radical militant group based in the USA, who kidnapped an heiress to a global media empire, turned her onto their way of thinking and led the American media on a merry dance for about 2 years.

At the core of their raison d'être was the emergence of the "counterculture" in the States. Protests against leaders that had alienated, disenfranchised and upset them with their actions. Their message was clear; empower the masses. Their ransom demands for the kidnapping included a food program in California for the poor inhabitants of major metropolitan areas. The Hearst family blew $2million on it. It was a game-changer. A tiny band of radicals had the elite asking, "How high?"

What transpired from this relative giant-slaying was a bank robbery, violence, more and more absurd demands and proclamations, murder and a cat-and-mouse game with the police. By the end, the SLA was fighting the police and, it all ended in a literal blaze of not so much glory. They burned to death whilst under siege and engaging in a firefight with the LAPD. Now, despite having been global headlines and inciting the largest private volunteer movement the United States had ever seen, most people don't have a clue who they were. Why? Because they didn't know when they'd won and what to do next.

It's probably patently obvious how these two groups link together. Plucky underdogs and all that. But, you see, it's the fundamental problem with most (granted, not all) grass-roots organisations and movements. They're ill-prepared and they're very prone to losing focus. The SLA wanted a voice and to be a voice of the oppressed. The day of their firefight with the LAPD, they had pretty much every major news network in the States broadcasting live from the scene. They had their ultimate platform, waiting for them. The microphone was live, the cameras were waiting. Instead, they went for glory and pursued their own personal vendetta and agenda. They lost sight of why they even existed in the first place.

BRAG have had a winning moment so far. Kean left. It doesn't matter how they go in, they all count and that was definitely a goal for BRAG and the fanbase as a whole. Instead of reassessing their position and taking stock of their options, it seemed they just needed to find a reason to be. So, building links with the club has been - perhaps unfairly, perhaps correctly - perceived as digging their claws in.

The fact is, people won't agree on this because it's the very nature of "resistance." Resistance is standing up for what you believe is right. That doesn't necessarily make that which you believe in right in itself. With resistance, comes the desire for change. But, unless you have a real, coherent and practical alternative, then you leave yourself wide open for criticism and, personally, stepping outside the confines of context for a moment, I think that criticism is fair, just and imperative.

So, what I'd say is, be sceptical, challenge others' views, make them prove they're worthwhile investing in, but remember why you're interested, too. Remember that there is always a constructive path to take.

And, finally, the argument posed by some based around the adage "it's better than nothing," is inherently flawed. Doing nothing maintains a relative status-quo, the terms and parameters of which are understood and accepted. Action for the sake of action is as likely to change for the better as it is to change for the worse. Accepting your limitations will do wonders for your ability to make sure you don't do any harm.

Source: Has BRAG served its purpose?

Tom
Simple question. I strongly feel that they played a part in the demise of Steve Kean's reign of horror. Probably through a good amount of influence with Shebby Singh. For that I am grateful.

They provided a dossier to the FA - possibly indicating wrongdoing or maybe just insinuating wrongdoing. The FA, on the face of it, appear to have ignored the information, or are hastily ensuring that any of the implications are investigated and resolved in house. This is an assumption on my part of course, and is based on a lack of tangible action.

Is there anything else the Action Group can offer?

If Venkys sack Appleton after 10 games because of missed targets will the Venkys Out campaigns begin again? - at which point everyone will look to the Action Group to "do something". Who would fill that vacuum if they were no more?

Should all of the weight of the Action Group members go into working with the Rovers Trust to help develop a strategy for enabling partial ownership discussions to take place? Would they be welcomed?

They clearly (to me at least) have Rovers' best interests at heart and their strengths could be put to good use.

So, is there a role for the Action Group to play in 2013 and beyond? I'm shamelessly and possibly unfairly asking the Action Group to justify their existence, and create a compelling case for people to get behind them.

I fully expect a few one word (or even) two word posts but this is NOT a BRAG bashing thread, this is a constructive discussion. This is also not a platform for people to criticise individuals - that is all too easy - take it to Twitter if that's your bag

Action Group folk, please try to see past any personal digs (to be fair you usually do) and consider your responses, and the way people will try to twist them. This is not a trap or me trying to bait anyone but I think it's a relevant question in current climate.

Source: Has BRAG served its purpose?

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