• The Championship

Blackburn cautiously optimistic on Appleton approach

ESPN staff
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Michael Appleton is wanted by Blackburn © Getty Images
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Blackburn Rovers remain hopeful of appointing Blackpool manager Michael Appleton, according to managing director Derek Shaw.

Earlier this week, Blackburn made a formal approach to speak to Appleton, who took charge of Blackpool in November, as they seek a replacement for Henning Berg. It is understood the approach was dismissed.

However, Shaw has told the Press Association that, while he "wouldn't like to comment" on that, Rovers have not yet abandoned their pursuit of the former Portsmouth boss.

"We're in discussion, if that can be adequate," he said. "If there's anything later we'll certainly let you know."

Appleton has only won two of his 12 games in charge of Blackpool and was a surprise choice by the Blackburn powerbrokers.

It is understood the approach for him came from Shaw and operations director Paul Agnew, rather than other factions at Ewood Park. Remarkably, Shaw and Agnew are also thought to have favoured the then Blackpool manager, Ian Holloway, when Berg was appointed in October.

Reserve-team manager Gary Bowyer is currently in charge of Blackburn. He is their fourth manager of the season after Steve Kean, who resigned, caretaker Eric Black and Berg, whose reign only lasted ten games and 57 days.

Rovers have won all three matches under Bowyer but remain in the wrong half of the Championship. They face Wolves on Friday in Dean Saunders' first game as manager at Molineux.

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