Blackburn boss Steve Kean - Payback time for Norwich City
Steve Kean believes Blackburn owe the Canaries one after being denied a precious Premier League win at Carrow Road earlier in the season.
Grant Holt's stoppage time penalty earned Norwich a 3-3 draw – points which would have greatly enhanced Rovers' chances of survival after a damaging recent run of five consecutive league defeats.
'Any team can go on a bad run, it doesn't make you a bad team,' said Kean. 'This is 100% a three-pointer. We feel we owe Norwich one. We felt hard done by at Norwich when we didn't get all three points earlier in the season - that day we were well worthy of the win. The second part of the season they have done well but this is almost a cup match - form goes out of the window.'
Kean insists there are no major divisions in his squad after Gael Givet was left out for last weekend's 3-0 defeat at Swansea with his manager citing a concern the Frenchman was 'not in the right frame of mind'. The defender has since held positive talks with Kean and is set to be restored to the line up for the Canaries' visit.
'There were things that seemed to surround us, as always, and there was meant to be a problem when there wasn't,' said Kean. 'Gael came into the office and spoke with me and was very positive with his outlook so I'm delighted he's going to be back in the side. When I spoke to him last week I didn't feel he was in the right frame of mind, this week he has been magnificent after our chat.'
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Kean is adamant there remains a common belief amongst his squad Rovers can pull off a notable escape.
'You might go to work one day and not really feel that great and if you have a good boss they will be understanding, and I felt I dealt with it well,' he said. 'To a man the players have all trained well and there has been a good positive atmosphere with no nervous edge.'
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Kean was also forced to defend his midfielder Steven Nzonzi, who was a target for the boo boys at the Liberty Stadium.
'I think that it's harsh to put all that responsibility on one person,' he said. 'Steven's played every minute of every game apart from two when he was suspended and one when he was ill. That can catch up with you and we have not had the advantage of being able to rotate central midfielders as much as other clubs so there has been a burden on Steven.'
Kean is equally unconcerned by the potential for further unrest arising from a scheduled 'community march' involving disgruntled Blackburn fans prior to kick-off.
'Demonstration or no demonstration, it's our responsibility to get all the fans happy and excited by the way we approach the game,' he said.
Yakubu and Junior Hoilett - who both scored in the corresponding fixture against Norwich at Carrow Road - have shaken off injury niggles and will play. Martin Olsson (groin) remains a doubt. Young centre back Grant Hanley (ankle) is out for the rest of the season.