We continue our summer season preview with an interview with Blackburn supporter Matt Reid Blackburn fan from N.Ireland.
Q. View on last season’s performance?
Last season wasn’t bad for Blackburn. I think that our overall performance in the cups and in the league shows that we are slowing improving again, with a bit of luck and the right signings I think we can be challenging for league and cup titles every season. 10th last season isn’t good enough for a club like us.
Can you sum up Lucas Neill in three words?
I lost a bit of respect from him when he was going to join for Liverpool but then went to West Ham for a bigger wage. But I still respect him for what he did with us, so to sum him up in three words as a footballer not a person; intelligent, a leader and brave.
Would you liked to have re-signed Bellamy from us?
Bellamy was great for us and was one of my favorite players even though he was a gobby shite. He did’not really cut it at Liverpool, the standard there was too high for him I think, but the level Blackburn are at is perfect for him and his abilites, thats until we get better that is! As for him re-signing I would’not not want him back but at the same time I’m not that bothered we have one of the best strikers in the league in the form of McCathy anyway. I think he will do well as West Ham they are in a level below Blackburn at the minute, so I think he will enjoy being the star player there; something which he was far from at Liverpool.
Q. Summer spending – you happy with your acquisitions?
Well we have only made one! so far at least. It’s the guy from the Dutch League, Maceo Rigters. He’s a striker, I’m not 100% sure on his record over there if he was prolific or not. But as with all foreign imports we will have to wait and see how he adapts to the Premiership. From what I’ve seen on YouTube clips he looks like a strong lad anyway which is always helpful.
Q. Are you expecting any more transfers?
Blackburn hasn’t been that busy in the transfer market, I’ve heard very little rumours. I’d like to see maybe a quality centre-back to keep our backline really solid then we can work from there. Even a new midfielder; Robbie (Savage) is getting on a bit now and it may time for us to get rid of him as much as I love him. Signing a few promising or established players always brings up team morale so hopefully a few will be drafted in before the window closes.
Q. What do you consider to be your biggest strengths?
Benni McCarthy and Morten Gamst Pederson
Q. And weaknesses?
Q. One thing you could change at your club?
The kit sponsor – I hate that massive Bet24 logo! But, really one thing I would change would be that we never sold Alan Shearer, we could have won a few more trophies with him and build a better squad from revenue etc. But I think we are on the right track now with our current squad.
Q. Hopes for the coming season?
I think we will do a lot better than last season, given the right signings and luck. I predict that we will be swapping places with Arsenal with them going to 10th and us to 5th, I just don’t think they will cope without Henry, maybe if they got Martins they could sustain their spot but it looks like Newcastle aren’t playing ball. As for Blackburn, I would be extremely happy with a Top 5 or 6 position and a place in Europe like we had in 2005-06 but maybe win one of the cups along the way.
Q. What about us, how do you think we will fare this coming season?
I really fancy you boys to make a real title challenge this year, people bang on about Utd signing Owen Hargreves when they are only bringing their central-midfield quality up to Liverpool’s standards. Sure they won the league last year but that was down to the brilliance of Ronaldo, form which I doubt he will replicate this season. But with Liverpool, you have signed Torres and Voronin two who I think will be lethal together. Voronin I expect to surprise everyone, he’s been plucked out of obscurity by Benitez almost. Don’t know much about Ryan Babel but I hear he is the next Henry, don’t know how much of that to believe to be honest. Oh yeah, you signed Beyanoun from the Hammers, he was one of their best players he’s bound to improve at Liverpool like Mascherano did I suppose.
Q. So, tips for this coming season:
Title: Undecided ‘“ Liverpool/Manchester Utd
Top Scorer: McCarthy, he was only two goals off Drogba last year and I think he’s continually improving.
Relegated: Derby, Wigan and West Ham (If Tevez leaves)
Player to come from no-where: I reckon your new boy Voronin will come good in the Premiership as well as N. Ireland’s own David Healy.
Liverpool will finish in: 1st/2nd
Blackburn will finish in: 5th