Improvements at last!

It's been a while since I've posted on this blog. I started another website to post my thoughts about anything in football, and I've really enjoyed blogging about topics such as sexism, referees, modern football and even homophobia.

But I found myself reading my first few posts that I published way back in February on this blog, and realised I really missed writing about Rovers on a regular basis. I missed conversing with other fans, and just generally talking about my team. So I've decided to try and update this blog a bit more.

It's weird, because when I first started blogging about Blackburn, it was a whirlwind. It was agonising even thinking about my club. We were shocking. Now, we may still have days where we are shocking, but on the whole, (on field anyway) we are showing more and more signs of stability.

Off the field, that's clearly not the case given the recent revelations of our pre tax losses. I don't want to go into that right now though.

I wanted to look at the differences we've seen in players, management and the owners since the dark days of Steve Kean.

Firstly, management wise, regardless of Bowyer's lack of experience, I feel we're in a far better position now than we were under any of the other four managers we endured last season. Despite being in the top three under Keano, we all knew that it wouldn't last long.

Under him, the players had no motivation (bar Bradley Orr?), the tactics were shocking (can we all just remember for one minute about that dire performance against Tottenham away in our last season of the Premier League where I don't think we actually got out of our own half, let alone have a single shot at goal) and Kean's post match analysis' were enough to make you want to kill yourself, and that was on a positive day (pretty much every day in the deluded man's mind.)

Eric Black was next, and I doubt anyone expected a revamp in performance under him. We will ignore him because he couldn't really have done much and he was only in charge for three or four games (that unimportant I can't even remember the exact amount of games me managed.)

His successor was Henning Berg. Former legend on the pitch, yes, efficient manager? Perhaps not. Although we did beat Peterborough away 4-1. Saying that, that was our only win in 10 games with him.

Then we welcomed Michael Appleton. His first few games sparked positivity, but lo and behold, it was yet another manager who was not destined to see success at Ewood. Initially, I thought he was doing ok given the circumstances. Then we got knocked out of the FA Cup by Milwall in the quarter finals and I cried for 25 minutes. Bye bye.

For a second time, we encouraged Gary Bowyer, which we were all quite pleased about. He'd done well for us over the Christmas period after Berg was sacked, and things seemed like they could be ok.

We lost to Wednesday away 3-2 and relegation seemed imminent. Then, out of nowhere, the boys pulled a 2-1 win over Millwall away, and if it wasn't for that win, I still think we could have gone down.

This season, we're now eleventh in the table, we've still got the same manager we started with and he's doing a pretty good job. Ok we have had a few dips in performance, but on the whole, the team look like they're playing for someone, they look motivated.

Which brings me onto my next area of discussion - players. With a bit of help from Bowyer, we have seen players such as Josh King completely change. Where, last year, he was hesitant and unable to utilise his pace, we have seen him now develop into an active threat - he needs to work on his end product but on the whole he's improved. A lot.

For the last two season's, I was Rochina's biggest critic. I thought he was creative yes, but I also thought he was a liability. He had this knack of being in a great position, he'd have you thinking he was going to do something bloody wonderful, then he'd take it round a defender, and he'd succeed, then he'd take it round a second, and the ball was gone.

On the first game of the season however (before he dislocated his shoulder), he again looked a completely different player. His loan spells last season have done wonders, and actually I am really excited about seeing him play for Rovers again, hopefully after the International break.

Another huge change in our standard of playing is that Danny Murphy can no longer wear our shirt. I think that is probably one of the biggest contributing factors to the change in our standard of play.

Thirdly, ownership. First question - where the bloody hell is Shebby Singh?! Thank god he's buggered off somewhere. It seems now that we have a board, that aren't consistently arguing with each other all the time. The Venky's have backed Bowyer, and haven't actually made a ridiculously outlandish comment this season as of the time of writing!

We're screwed financially, but I want to ignore that right now, because since two seasons ago - we have improved. I actually don't expect Rovers to lose every single game now, and when we do lose, sometimes I actually feel surprised.

We've got a man in charge who is managing the club better than we have seen since the days of Allardyce, we've got a revitalised squad who are looking hungry for points, and the owners have kept quiet.

So, even if things get tough, let's just remember that it isn't as bad as the time we played Tottenham away.