Belfast Telegraph

Roberts backs Blackburn target

Blackburn striker Jason Roberts is comfortable with the club's new owners having a long-term vision of finishing at least in the top five in the Premier League.

Following the surprise dismissal of manager Sam Allardyce, Scottish coach Steve Kean is taking temporary charge of the side, starting with the home game against West Ham on Saturday.

New owners Venky's have targeted a top-five finish in the top flight and Roberts said: "If their agenda is to get into the top five, the fans and players will be happy about that. If that means changes what can we do, other than the best we can?"

He added: "The only thing we do know is that Sam is not going to be there any more. We have to get our heads around it and try to perform as best we can because the important thing is the club."

Venky's would ideally like a British manager to succeed Allardyce, who led the club to 10th place last season.

Roberts added on BBC Radio Five Live: "It's always good if you can have someone you can understand and who understands the mentality. But there have been a lot of successful foreign managers in this country as well.

"All we can do is the best we can in the situation that has been put in front of us."

Former caretaker-manager Tony Parkes believes Kean has a big job trying to win over the Blackburn players.

Kean could find himself in control of the dressing room during the transfer window as Venky's say they are not looking for a quick fix.

That comment about Allardyce's successor from company chairman Anuradha Desai would appear to rule out the likes of Martin Jol, Sven-Goran Eriksson and Diego Maradona.

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