x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

Blackburn Rovers drop is all on Venky's shoulders

The chicken dressed up in the Blackburn Rovers flag has come to symbolise the folly of Venky's, the Indian poultry giant, acquiring one of only four teams to have won the English Premier League.

Blackburn fans have even taken to invading the pitch with banners to display their displeasure with the management that owners Venky's has undertaken.
Blackburn fans have even taken to invading the pitch with banners to display their displeasure with the management that owners Venky's has undertaken.

The chicken dressed up in the Blackburn Rovers flag has come to symbolise the folly of Venky's, the Indian poultry giant, acquiring one of only four teams to have won the English Premier League.

An acerbic article in the Mumbai Mirror the day after the club were relegated said: "So peculiar have some of the calls been that the chicken that made an appearance at Ewood Park could well have been a January signing (We didn't get Ronaldinho? Beckham said no? OK, chicken sounds good. Four-year deal)."

With rumours pointing to a search for buyers in the Middle East and South East Asia, Venky's first public statement post-relegation will hardly ease the worries of fans irate at the way the club have been taken down the road to ruin. "Criticism is bound to happen due to results, but reports of selling the club are not correct," said Venkateshwara Rao, one of the co-owners.

The reaction in India has generally been one of bemusement at Venky's taking over a club that has no sort of fan base outside Lancashire, and then appointing a chairperson, Anuradha Desai, who confessed to never having watched a game.

They might still have got away with it had they invested in the squad last year.

Instead, Phil Jones went to Manchester United before the season began, and Chris Samba made off to Dagestan in the winter transfer window.

Those coming in, despite the hype from Steve Kean, were nowhere near the quality needed to survive.

Alan Shearer, a hero of the title-winning side of 1995, isn't the only one left feeling that Jack Walker's legacy has been spat on.

 

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