Sam confident of survival

18 December 2008 04:39
Sam Allardyce is confident of saving Blackburn Rovers from relegation after being unveiled as the new manager at Ewood Park. Allardyce has been handed a three-year contract after being confirmed as Paul Ince's successor on Wednesday and the former Bolton Wanderers and Newcastle United boss believes he can preserve the club's top-flight status. Ince was axed on the back of an 11-game winless run which has left the club languishing in 19th place in the Premier League table. Allardyce, who has brought in Neil McDonald as his assistant from Leeds United, admitted he jumped at the chance to return after almost a full year out of management. He also revealed that he had turned down a previous approach from Rovers to take the reins before they appointed Ince last summer. "Six months ago it was a case of speaking with (chairman) John Williams, going home and talking to my better half," he admitted. "After 15 years straight managing and coaching I decided it was too early to jump back into the mainstream. "Now I can get going in terms of getting my teeth stuck into the job and improving results. "It is an unexpected position that the team find themselves in, I don't think anybody expected the club to be in the position it is. "But having been there before, I hope the players respond very quickly. I hope this is a blip and just a run of poor form. "We have to get the players playing to the maximum of their ability and hopefully we can move up the table. "You can never say you are too good to go down - clubs have fallen foul of that before - but the players have to play to the maximum of their ability to get us out of trouble." Meanwhile, Allardyce claims he is under no pressure to sell players in the January transfer window. Paraguay striker Roque Santa Cruz has been linked with a move away from Ewood Park, but the newly-installed manager is determined to keep hold of his best players. "I've got to evaluate the squad before even venturing into what we might or might not do in January," he continued. "We don't want to have to sell anybody in the January transfer window. "Why would I want to sell the best ones? Why would I want to do that?"

Source: ESA

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