Date: 18th July 2008 at 12:34pm
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Blackburn goalkeeper Brad Friedel has today requested to leave Ewood Park and speak with Aston Villa and Man City.

The Blackburn legend has made it clear to new manager Paul Ince that he is keen to speak with other clubs.

In the last 48 hours, John Williams and Paul Ince have rejected bids from both clubs for the in-demand 37-year-old, who only signed a new two-year deal in February.

However, with Friedel making it clear he would like to move on, Rovers are left in a tough spot.

The chairman told the Lancashire Evening Telegraph: ‘We’ve had two bids for Brad, despite my insistence to the clubs concerned we didn’t want them. They’ve been rejected.

‘When Brad told us he wanted to leave, it was a bolt out of the blue – he had only signed his latest contract back in February, and a replacement keeper has not even been on our radar.

‘It’s an unwelcome situation for us, and particularly for Paul, who has been concentrating on other targets, as well as assessing our squad and bedding in his new backroom staff.

‘We are very keen for Brad to stay but to deny him the move he clearly wants after a lengthy stint with the club is difficult.

‘We know we have good players and are constantly rejecting unwanted overtures, but it’s particularly difficult to accept players leaving for clubs in and around us in the league.

‘We have told Brad that, in any event, we cannot even consider a move for him, unless we can satisfy both our football and commercial requirements.

‘Looking at the market for proven keepers, we haven’t got a bid that anywhere near meets the commercial part of the equation.

‘I know some observers will feel that we should take Brad’s age and service into account, but it’s not that simple.

‘We have not earmarked any funds for the goalkeeping department. Why would we?

‘And on the football side, Brad Friedels don’t grow on trees.

‘If he doesn’t get his move, although disappointed, Brad is the ultimate professional and I am confident he will remain focused on Rovers.

‘But there’s no point in denying that this is a tricky situation.’

The reason for the move is no doubt money, Villa and Man City are both ready to offer more money than Rovers could afford.

That prompted Ince to offer Friedel an improved contract this week, but with the big man ready to go elsewhere, it does appear as if Villa is his preffered destination.

Bad news for Rovers for sure, but I wish Brad all the success wherever he may end up. He has been a magnificent servant for the club and is a living legend.


36 Replies to “Friedel Requests Ewood Exit”

  • I echo the sentiments already stated. Maybe we should all wear black arms bands for the first home game. Or lay reefs at the gates of Ewood Park?

  • I will always keep the faith and see the good in things. We will come through this and move on with a younger goalie but I echo the sentiment again… a bad, bad day.

  • You Rovers fans are an inspiration. You’ve had the very best of Brad Friedel and none of you begrudge him the move. You will get someone younger and fitter, which is obviously better in the long term. At the end of the day, you’re a big club and therefore you’ll see it through either way.

  • im surprised by this as i never had him down as the ‘mercenary’ type – if it is the money tempting him… is it the lure of one last pay off before he retires that is wanting him to leave or do you just think that it is purely footballing reasons? either way he will be a big loss for you as much like jamo for us he is a big player for you…

  • “The reason for the move is no doubt money, Villa and Man City are both ready to offer more money than Rovers could afford. “

    What a load of nonsense I’m afraid chaps.

    The general consensus on our Vital site (no pun) is that Friedel may well be being brought to Villa Park (assuming he joins) is to act as 1-2 year #1 keeper, and to bring through current US#2 Brad Guzan. Not to mention the reported links that Randy Lerner may help Brad set up his American-Soccer schools so that he has something post playing career. Given that the bloke could have no dobut moved long before now, I’m almost stunned you try to shoe-horn him into a “typical money hungry mercanary” stereotype.

  • Its the soccer schools that swung it I think, he has some out there already but I think he is hoping to expand that with Randys help. Cant blame him for that he is 37 and is probably thinking of life after football.

  • I echo the sentiments of murph and Tez. I read somewhere that Friedal was intersted in a move to Villa as their chairman has connections in the US to help develop his soccor school. Brad does not seem the type to move for money reasons. He is loved, nay worshipped by the Blackburn faithful, and I presume it was not a decision he took lightly.

  • Now i like Friedel and will always say hes one of the best ever in the league BUT maybe this is the rite time to let him go, its not everyday u cann sell a 38yr old for the kind of money that is being mentioned with Brad at present and there are good young keepers out there for the future, like Robinson @ Spurs who i think just needs the confidence of a new manager to get back on form, the lad fom Utd, sorry forget his name as well and Robert Green seems to be unhappy at The Hammered

  • Brad is not a mercenary – he is a professional who has gone about his business in the right way, unlike other footballers I could mention. He has given us excellent service and the club won’t and shouldn’t stand in his way if a lucrative deal comes along – as at his age he won’t get many more chances like this. I’m just gutted that we can’t persuade him to stay.

  • I at no point wanted to show Brad as the mercenary type, HE IS NOT. the respect I have for Brad is not in question, money will have played a part in this move, there is no doubt about that. Rovers can’t compete with that. I do not begrudge him the move, he is one of my heroes and it upsets me to think he is going. Good luck Brad.

  • I hope the club don’t try and force him to stay, if he wants to go I want my Brad memories to be happy ones…

  • There is a tear in my eye as write this and think of one our best players at the club and all the joy he has brouht us with his saves and loyalty over the years. If he goes I wish him nothing but the best he has been immense for us. but this is certainly bad news!

  • He served us brilliantly over the last 8 years- I’d let him go now just for that- he deserves the double-your-wages offer, and buy a long term GK: Muller, Hennessey, Murray or even that giant Lewis.
    I do feel, though, it was far better had he stayed here beyond his contract and taught our next generation’s GK’s.

  • pure gutted but he had 2 go soonish anyway, on the last game of the season were friedel was shocking against birmingham, i thourght it was this season he would leave, but anyway hopefully we can land rob green who believes he is bein treated unfairly

  • By the way, it reminds me of C. Hendry- our best CB ever, when he decided to leave for gers…At least it was’nt for pure money was it.

  • … theres nothing i can think to say, im gutted. looks like carson will be our top tranfer target 4 the summer now!

  • If he has to go to city it should be for 2 million cash plus Kasper Shmeichel or 3 million to any other club. That way we can afford to replace the most consistent goalkeeper for the last 8 seasons with a decent keeper. Maybe Kameni or that turkish keeper. As for that Randy Lerner link, i dont believe that for a second. Lerner has been at villa for a while now and Brad only signed a new contract in feb. I think this is about the money and i think he deserves it because he was good enough to play for any of the big european clubs but he stuck with us

  • We will have him at Villa Park tomorrow, wont cost much just his wages. BBR should be moving heaven and earth to keep a player of his standing.

  • Robbo is a sound replacement, Don’t forget Steele was his coach at Leeds when Robbo, was on top form. You don’t make the CL semi with a crap keeper between the sticks. He will join us soon as he is desperate to link up with Steele again, we could get a bargin. I don’t buy into this Brad I want out, think its a case of six of one half a dozen of the other.

  • GUTTED that Bradders see’s fit to leave Rovers, but he will do this with MASSIVE thanks from everyone!!! The day was going to come one day, it’s just come a few years sooner than we expected but at least (not that it means much!!!) we’ll get some money for him in way of a transfer. Robinson has had a bad time with Spurs, the change WOULD do him good so I’d be happy with him to come in, and he wouldn’t cost us much more than what we will get for Bradders, not bad going for an England International who is probably 10-years Bradders’ junior!

  • Bradders as a former keeper iv gotta say that uv been simply the best!!! I never thought that Tim Flowers could have been bettered but u are 100 of him!! The place wont be the same without u mate!! – But we move on and Robinson is the perfect choice. An excellent keeper who needs a club like us that will put our arms round him!! Got some big boots to fill tho fella…..i can count Brads mistakes on one hand over the past eight years!!

  • Lads stop this Kasper talk the lad is gash altogether, to have him in to replace Brad woud see me lose my hair and I’m only 20! Robinson wouldn’t be too bad but i feel there is a derth of good goalkeeping talent around at the moment and thats why I feel if we can somehow hang onto Brad then we will be in a far better position. (i never tought I’d have to contemplate seeing Brad play for another tea, I’m gutted)

  • Villa are now reported to be looking at Rob Green of West Ham… maybe to try and get us to complete the deal

  • I am still upset at this news even though I have had a weekend to sleep on it. Brad you are the greatest, don’t go.

  • I agree with “durks de rovers” Kasper is nowhere near the mark!! The amount of games where we need Brad is worrying….Carson would have been a good choice but Robinson is defo the man. Young but experienced and he’s only had one bad season. The others were ace. You don’t become a bad player in one year n i reckon that we’d be a great club for him to feel at home……..remember Bradders came with a poor couple of years under his belt at Liverpool and never looked back. Good players always do well at Rovers – FACT!!

  • I wouldnt want Kasper. Not up to it in my eyes. I am sure we may end up with someone from abroad? either way if Brad goes, they have one hell of an act to follow.

  • i go on holiday for two weeks and i get back to news that suer brad wants to leave 🙂 unhappy days! let Jason Brown have a crack at the whip unless Ince gets Cudicini in!

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