Blackburn Rovers: Where to From Here?

illya mclellanSenior Analyst IMay 19, 2009

Blackburn Rovers have assured their participation in next year's English Premier League with a reasonable finish to the season which saw them able to go to Stamford Bridge with enough points to not be overly concerned with the outcome.

This is a luxury that Sunderland, Newcastle, and Hull can only dream of going into this weekend's games.

This strong position was built on the expertise of the much maligned Sam Allardyce who took over from the seemingly bewildered Paul Ince who found the Premiership was not as easy a place to work as Mark "Sparky" Hughes had made it look.

All Allardyce really did was start making logical team selections as well as shoring up the midfield which was giving away possession like a billionaire philanthropist on Ecstasy would money.

Another thing he started to do was play Benni McCarthy again which was a major part of the teams renaissance, the guy is a quality striker with a CL medal to boot and Blackburn will be lucky to hold onto him next season.

Europe seems a long way from where Blackburn are now, but they still realistically have the playing staff and the club set up to really make a challenge for a reasonable placing next season.

The question again for a club like Blackburn is whether they are going to actually compete again with the top sides in the way they had began to under the guidance of Hughes.

Hughes had done admirably considering the limitations he had in his time at Ewood, and I am sure Jack Walker would have been grateful to Hughes for the work he did in restoring the respect of visitors to Ewood park.

It was Jack Walker's money that originally enabled then manager Kenny Dalglish to make the step up to contenders and winners of the 1995 premiership trophy.

The good news for Allardyce for next season is that at this stage the Walker Foundation is believed to be still on board to make a contribution to team funds as they were earlier this season for Paul Ince.

The playing staff is packed with talent and the question will be as it always is around this time, just who will be lining up for Blackburn in the new season.

One would think that big Sam has been having a quiet word to several of his core players and making sure that they know what his plan for next year is.

Sam Allardyce is one of the Premier League's unsung heroes, with a quite impressive record in the time he has spent managing within it.

He once again will be given the opportunity to prove this with a capable group of players and a proud fan-base.

Can he win the club some silverware next season?