LONDON: Blackburn Rovers manager Steve Kean insisted he had no intention of quitting the club following their relegation from the Premier League and vowed to stay at Ewood Park in a bid to help them return to the top flight.
Monday's 1-0 home defeat by north-west rivals Wigan -- who stayed up in the process -- in a match Rovers had to win to maintain their bid for Premier League survival, ended Blackburn's 11-year stay among English football's elite.
Kean, who replaced former manager Sam Allardyce in December 2010, has faced consistent criticism from supporters throughout this season as have Blackburn owners Venky's, an Indian-based poultry firm.
A local newspaper called for Kean to be sacked six months ago and the Scot faced verbal abuse throughout the Wigan defeat, Blackburn's seventh loss in eight matches, as did Venky's.
But Kean was adamant he would be around to guide Blackburn in their quest for an immediate return from the second-tier Championship.
"I will sit down with the owners and we'll discuss a plan on how to assemble a squad to bounce back straight away," he said.
"We've lost a lot of experience over the last six months and we've got to try to keep the squad together. If we can do that and if we can add experienced players to the squad we can bounce back and that's what we'll try to do."
Kean has been the target for sustained abuse from supporters in recent months but he said his self-belief remained intact.
"I'm a big believer in my own ability and the guys that I've got in the dressing room.
"Each one is devastated but I can't fault the commitment. If we can keep them and add quality I'm convinced we can move forward again," Kean said.
"I believe in them because I work with them every day. We've got the youngest team in the league and some of them are making their way in the Premier League.
"It's a massive set-back but they've got good careers ahead of them." AFP