Blackburn forward Junior Hoilett’s time at Ewood Park could well be coming to end but his parting gift could yet be to keep the club in the Premier League.
The 21-year-old, who seems increasingly unlikely to renew a contract which expires in the summer, scored the crucial opening goal as Rovers moved six points clear of relegation.
Hoilett’s well-taken volley just before the hour last night was followed by a late header from Ayegbeni Yakubu to give Rovers an important victory with nine games remaining.
The youngster looked the most inventive of Blackburn’s players on the night and although manager Steve Kean still speaks optimistically about keeping him beyond the end of the season there are bigger clubs waiting in the wings to snap up his prize asset.
The most immediate priority, for Kean though, is securing survival and he was a happy man last night.
“It was great to see the fans going home happy once again,’’ he said.
“I thought the atmosphere was excellent and I think from our point of view, to get some consistency together breeds confidence.
“The partnership of Yakubu and Junior is starting to show signs of causing all sorts of problems for central defenders. And now with back-to-back wins and back-to-back clean sheets it is fantastic really.’’
BLACKBURN: Robinson, Lowe, Dann, Hanley, Martin Olsson, Nzonzi, Pedersen, Formica (Orr 79), Hoilett, Marcus Olsson, Yakubu.
SUNDERLAND: Mignolet, Bardsley, Kyrgiakos, Turner, Bridge (Colback 77), Larsson, Gardner, Vaughan, McClean, Bendtner, Campbell (Ji 72).
Referee: Martin Atkinson (W Yorkshire).
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