Below is an audio clip of a phone call between the owner of Blackburn Rovers, Balaji Rao, and a supporter who wishes to remain anonymous. Balaji assumes that the caller is new manager Tony Mowbray.
This audio is 100% genuine.
TM: Hello, Mr. Rao. It’s Tony. Tony Mowbray? The new manager of Blackburn Rovers.
BR: Yes, yes. Hi.
TM: Hi, yeah. Just wanted to let you know, many thank you for giving me the job, and the first day of training went fantastic.
BR: Right. One second, hah?
TM: Yeah, thank you.
BR: How are you? How are you, Tony?
TM: Yeah, thank you very much for giving me the job, I really appreciate it, and the first day of training went brilliant.
BR: Thank you very much…
BR: …for coming to our family.
TM: Oh, brilliant, it’s fantastic! The place is buzzing, and I’m positive we’re gonna stay up this season.
BR: That’s it. I want that only from you, and then we carry on.
TM: Yeah. So it’s in 18-month contract. I’m pleased with that. I’m pleased with the terms. I spoke to Jerome – it’s all good, and we’re ready to go, and we’ll stay up this season, I can assure you.
TM: Yeah, so any chance of seeing you some time soon, or what?
BR: Yes, yes, I’m coming over the day after to Europe. I was there just two days ago in London.
TM: Oh, right!
BR: But then I left, yeah, there I left. Then I’m coming back to Switzerland, then I’m coming one day to London, that’ll be on Monday.
TM: Right, maybe we could meet up in London, or maybe come to a game and I’ll see you at the game, or…
BR: Yes. You have a game next, next game weekend, sorry?
TM: Well, we’re playing Burton on Friday, away at Burton.
TM: Yeah, that’s away at Burton.
BR: So Monday you can come in? Or you’ll be training?
TM: We’ll be training on Monday, we’ll be training during the week, because obviously we need to get all the trainings in now to stay up. I’ll be getting the lads in as much as possible. Yeah, but hopefully you can [BR inaduble]… What about coming to a game? Or… Could you make a game?
BR: I’m… Yeah, I will come back, but I might be little bit [inaudible] when I come into London. I will get Suhail to fly you in and fly you out.
TM: Brilliant. Yeah, so I’ve seen Suhail, so hopefully I’ll see you soon, umm, and we can arrange something else.
BR: And it is lovely, lovely, to have you, you know? I will always… I will admire you for the last seven years.
TM: Oh, really? Brilliant!
BR: Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes!
TM: Yeah, it’s a shame… It’s a shame Owen couldn’t do a bit more but these things happen in football.
BR: But now we’ll see how we’ve done, we’re still here, and next year how we’ll go up.
TM: Yeah. Brilliant.
BR: If we can stay up.
BR: We must try to one and two. We will. We will.
TM: We will. I assure… We’re gonna need a bit of money – transfer money. You know? Get some players in?
BR: Yeah yeah! Stabilise ourselves here but then next year I’ll come and I’ll come and tell you how we can do our best.
TM: Brilliant. So yeah, we’ll obviously… We’ll stay up this yea, we’ll get a couple of our key players down to some new contracts, and, uhh… Yeah… Hopefully we can put s-
BR: Then, once… Once… Once we’ve survived, I will give you players. That is my promise to you.
TM: Promise, yeah?
TM: That’s good to hear. That’s brilliant.
BR: A man’s promise.
TM: A man’s promise. I hope you are true to your word because, uhh, I have good aspirations for Blackburn Rovers Football Club.
BR: Let me tell you something, I’m [inaudible[… It cannot be something that, uhhh, absurd or something, because uhh, we have to get out of the Championship.
TM: Yeah, of course, of course. We need to get out of this division.
BR: That’s it.
TM: Well, it’s been absolutely fanastic to s-
BR: Once we are out of this division, that’s it! We are in the Premier League.
TM: And the money will come in big time. The fans will come back. The money will be in, and we’ll be ready to roll, mate.
BR: And all of the money, I don’t want to use anywhere in India, I just want to put it in the club, where it will come. [possible misinterpretation].
TM: So, whatever comes into Blackburn Rovers, you will put back into the club, yeah?
BR: I have put £300m – £400m from my pocket.
TM: Really? Right, well that’s brilliant! Hopefully, fingers crossed, we can move forward from here. Hopefully we’ll stay up. Next season, get to the play-offs. You never know, we might go up.
BR: Never know! Never know! I cross my fingers and told Suhail the other day.
BR: I don’t know, this man that comes and, we might get into the play-offs.
TM: Yeah. Obviously you’re probably aware of the fans thoughts at the minute. I’ve got a lot to deal with, media-wise, tomorrow with the press conference. They’re gonna be asking, you know, are you gonna be in the country, are you gonna be giving statements. I just want to know your thoughts, really, now I’m speaking to you one on one.
BR: You can tell them you are speaking to me one on one.
TM: Yeah, because I was in touch with Alan Myers who used to work for the club, and he was hoping to get you across for a fan meeting, but that obviously never happened. I was wondering if that would be do-able in the near-future?
BR: We will come… That I will come back to you and, uhh, where is Suhail?
TM: I’m not sure to be honest. I spoke to him a couple of days ago, but that’s it.
BR: OK, I will just… I will come back to you in two seconds.
TM: That’s fine. I’ll speak to you soon.