Blackburn Rovers Vs West Bromwich Albion, Sun 23 Jan 2011

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Blackburn midfielder Morten Gamst Pedersen claims harmony has now been restored at Ewood Park and is looking forward to a bright future under Steve Kean.

Pedersen has seen plenty of change since joining the club in 2004 having worked for four previous managers in Graeme Souness, Mark Hughes, Paul Ince and Sam Allardyce.

Yet little of that can compare to the upheaval which has engulfed the club since November, with Indian firm Venky's taking over and sacking Allardyce.

Bold but futile statements naming Ronaldinho and David Beckham as transfer targets followed as Venky's surprisingly handed the manager's job to Allardyce's former assistant Kean.

But after a steady start, Kean was this week confirmed in the post until 2013 and Pedersen believes Rovers can now start looking up the Barclays Premier League.

The Norway international said: "It will bring a bit more stability as we know he is going to be here for a while.

"We can start to look forward more and work hard every day to get better.

"We have got a few new players in now and we will try to do as best as we can for the rest of the season.

"Then hopefully we can move on next season after we've had a full pre-season together.

"I know Steve. He is a very good coach, he is a good guy.

"We like the way he plays football and we work on this every day."

Pedersen has been one of Blackburn's most influential attacking forces since Souness brought him in from Tromso for #1.5million.

He remains thoroughly committed to the club and is happy to work under whoever they believe should be the manager.

The 29-year-old added: "For me as a player I just have to be a professional and work hard.

"It is not fun when people lose their job but it is part of the game, that is football now, you need results."

Captain Ryan Nelsen has delivered a vote of confidence by agreeing a one-year extension.

The inspirational 33-year-old New Zealand international, signed from DC United in 2005, is now committed until 2013.

Kean will now hope Nelsen's fellow defender Christopher Samba, linked with a move away since quotes attributed to him after Allardyce's departure suggested he was unhappy, follows.

The club spoke to the player this week and are expected to make him a written offer over the weekend.

New signing Jermaine Jones is in contention after his midweek move from Schalke and David Dunn has overcome the leg injury which forced him off early in last week's loss at Chelsea.

Nelsen is a slight doubt with a knee injury but Roque Santa Cruz is poised for his first start since rejoining the club on loan from Manchester City.

Boaz Myhill insists there is no problem between him and Scott Carson despite the former Hull goalkeeper taking his captain's place in the West Brom team.

Baggies boss Roberto Di Matteo made the decision to drop Carson ahead of last weekend's 3-2 victory over Blackpool and Myhill will keep his place for the Barclays Premier League trip to Blackburn.

The 28-year-old said: "I think we get on very well. Ultimately I'm just pleased to have been given a chance by the manager but my relationship with Scott and Dean (Kiely) hasn't changed."

The Wales international joined West Brom in the summer after more than 250 appearances in seven years at Hull, and he had no doubts he had made the right decision even before being given his chance by Di Matteo.

"When you're a goalie you're either in or you're out and that's just the way it is," he continued. "The skill is to try to retain a level head and work hard. It can get demoralising but there's a lot worse places to get demoralised than at a Premier League football club.

"Everybody's goal is to get in the starting XI and it's up to you as a player to make the most of the opportunities you get given. I enjoyed coming to work every day at the beginning of the season, I enjoyed the training when I wasn't in the team.

"The fact that currently I've been given a chance doesn't make it any more enjoyable, it's just that extra bit of icing on the cake. It's all you can ask for as a player."

Carson had made a number of costly mistakes prior to being left out of the team but Myhill had nothing but praise for his friend and rival.

He said: "I don't think he can do much more than what he has been doing. Scott's always a very hard-working trainer. We bounce off each other with Dean. It's great to be involved in."


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West Bromwich Albion
Blackburn Rovers
Premier League

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