Soccer-Ex Blackburn boss Kean close to Singapore move - reports

SINGAPORE Mon Oct 21, 2013 12:59am EDT

SINGAPORE Oct 21 (Reuters) - Ex-Blackburn Rovers manager Steve Kean, who endured a miserable spell on and off the field with the former English champions, is in discussions to become coach of Singapore league side Brunei DPMM.

The Scot stepped down from his role with Blackburn in September last year having overseen their relegation from the Premier League.

He was deeply unpopular with Ewood Park supporters and routinely faced protests for his managing style in his two years in charge after replacing the popular Sam Allardyce.

Undeterred, Brunei are close to finalising the recruitment of the former Fulham, Real Sociedad and Coventry City assistant coach who had been out of work since his departure from Blackburn, owned by Indian poultry giant Venky's.

"We are still in talks and will make an announcement at the end of the season, Brunei DPMM club manager Waslimin Momin told Singapore daily The Straits Times.

The 12-team S.League season finishes next month and Brunei are currently seventh under the guidance of coach Vjeran Simunic, who led them to 2012 League Cup which earned him the S.League coach of the year award.

The S.League is one of the weakest divisions in Asia and struggles to attract supporters to matches despite Singaporeans love of soccer - and in particular the English Premier League.

Shebby Singh, the former Blackburn global advisor who was also heavily criticised for his work alongside Kean at the club by disgruntled fans, backed his former charge.

"The step up to Premier League manager may have proven difficult but Steve has all the credentials and it will good for him to get away from all the negativity," the former Malaysian international told the paper.

"In Brunei, there won't be many influences; he can be his own man and I can safely say that he will excel."