The fallout surrounding Blackburn Rovers' relegation from the Premier League continued on Wednesday with reports the club's deputy chief executive had been sacked after criticising manager Steve Kean.
Kean, speaking at a news conference ahead of Blackburn's final game of the season at Chelsea on Sunday, said he could not comment on reports that Paul Hunt had been fired, a day after a letter was revealed in which he told the club's Indian owners Venky's that Kean should be sacked.
"I am aware of the speculation but I can't, at this moment, confirm it," Kean said. "That is all I want to say on that matter. I just want to talk about the Chelsea game."
Blackburn made no official comment on the reports, underlining the perception that the Indian chicken producers who own the club also run it from an unhealthy distance.
The letter from Hunt, written after Blackburn lost 2-1 at home to Bolton Wanderers in December and fell to the bottom of the table, warned the owners of growing financial problems and the threat of relegation.
He also questioned Kean's suitability for the manager's job.
"He has lost the crowd and as a result of this evening's game, he has lost the dressing room as well - the players no longer want to play for him," Hunt wrote. "It is a shame and disappointing but we must act now to save the club.
"I have been your senior officer at the club for six months now and I feel that I must now write to you to ask you to make some significant changes to save the club, perhaps from relegation but also perhaps from administration," Hunt added.
"We are losing fans/customers at an alarming rate. I am very concerned that fans are voting with their feet and not attending, not purchasing and not engaging with the club."
Liverpool hammer woeful Chelsea
Chelsea must win the Champions League to play in Europe's elite club competition next season after a 4-1 defeat at Liverpool on Tuesday ended their hopes of qualifying via the Premier League.
Stand-in manager Roberto Di Matteo made eight changes to the team that beat Liverpool 2-1 in Saturday's FA Cup final and they were picked apart by the rampant home side who gained some revenge for their Wembley disappointment.
With one match remaining, Chelsea are five points adrift of Tottenham Hotspur and four behind fifth-placed Newcastle United, both of whom are in a final-day scrap with Arsenal to pick up the third spot.