BOWYER COOL ON JOB TALK

The Football League Paper - - CHAMPIONSHIP - To comment on this match go to http://boards.footy­mad.net/ By John McDougall

BLACK­BURN care­taker man­ager Gary Bowyer cooled talk of tak­ing the job on full-time de­spite the draw with Birm­ing­ham se­cur­ing their Cham­pi­onship sta­tus.

Jor­dan Rhodes’ 30th league goal of the sea­son se­cured a point for Rovers and can­celled out Ravel Mor­ri­son’s first-half opener at St An­drew’s.

De­spite a sea­son of up­heaval off the field – which saw the dis­missal of three per­ma­nent man­agers in Steve Kean, Hen­ning Berg and Michael Appleton – a 17th-placed fin­ish can be re­garded as a rel­a­tive suc­cess for Bowyer, him­self in his sec­ond spell in care­taker charge this sea­son.

But rather than talk about his own sit­u­a­tion, Bowyer called on Rovers to keep hold of star striker Rhodes and build the team around him to chal­lenge for pro­mo­tion next sea­son.

“I’ve had no in­di­ca­tions from the own­ers, but hope­fully we’ll find out more in the com­ing week,” he said.

“The main con­ver­sa­tions have been get­ting through th­ese games and that had to be the case. It’s an im­por­tant sum­mer for the football club.

“I’ve got to do what the club ask me to do and our main aim was to stay in the di­vi­sion, which we’ve achieved and credit needs to go to the play­ers and sup­port­ers for stick­ing to­gether.

“This is the first time I’ve en­joyed it as we’re safe now. The ac­tual en­joy­ment of stay­ing in this di­vi­sion is sink­ing in now.

“It was a great fin­ish from Jor­dan, he was in the right place in the right time and he’s been out­stand­ing for us all sea­son.

“He’s con­tracted to the club and we need to build the team around him. We’re not naïve about him at­tract­ing in­ter­est but we need to build and get some sta­bil­ity at the club.”

Mor­garo Gomis went close for the Blues in the first minute with a 30yard ef­fort that went wide of Grze­gorz San­domier­ski’s goal.

Nikola Zigic could have given Birm­ing­ham the lead af­ter chest­ing down Chris Burke’s 26th-minute right-wing cross but the Ser­bian shot wide.

Right back Paul Cad­dis then re­ceived Nathan Red­mond’s cross­field pass on the right and cut in­side to find Burke but his shot went straight at San­domier­ski.

But ex-Manch­ester United trainee Mor­ri­son put the Blues ahead with a com­posed 42nd-minute low driven shot from the left side of the area.

David Jones hit the cross­bar with a curl­ing free-kick from the right-wing as Rovers searched for an equaliser.

And they got their goal through top scorer Rhodes’ close-range header on 66 min­utes.

Birm­ing­ham man­ager Lee Clark claims he’s ex­cited by the prospect of re­vamp­ing his squad over the sum­mer.

“With­out a doubt, I’m look­ing for­ward to the sum­mer,” he said “It’s go­ing to be hec­tic and busy and I’m look­ing for­ward to build­ing a vi­brant squad.

“It’s go­ing to be ex­actly the same as this sea­son in terms of no trans­fer fees and the bud­get is nowhere near where it was.

“The young play­ers have been bril­liant and they de­serve that op­por­tu­nity. They’ll be hun­gry play­ers brought in with three or four se­nior heads to set an ex­am­ple.

“It’s dis­ap­point­ing to fin­ish 12th and we’ve lost a cou­ple of places be­cause of goal dif­fer­ence so that’s been our Achilles’ heel.

“Mor­ri­son took his goal well – the quicker he re­alises he can do things like that the bet­ter as he went past peo­ple as if they weren’t there.”

PIC­TURES: Ac­tion Im­ages

SHARP SHOOTER: Jor­dan Rhodes cel­e­brates af­ter scor­ing the first goal for Black­burn

UN­LEASH­ING: David Good­willie has a shot for Rovers

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