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Kean on Nuno

19 July 2012

Rovers boss Steve Kean believes new signing Nuno Gomes will be a key addition to the squad – both on and off the pitch.

The Portuguese striker arrived at Rovers on a two-year deal from Braga and his new manager is delighted to have him on board.

"First of all we've got to talk about his quality and his ability,” said Steve.

"People will look at his age and think that he is getting on in his career, but I think if anybody saw his performances last year in Portugal, in the big games, he was still delivering quality and was the best player on the pitch.

"I saw him a couple of times and he was outstanding. He's got a wealth of experience, he's been at some big, big clubs for a long time and I still think he can play.”

The manager, who is now back at Brockhall after taking the team to Austria for an intensive week-long training camp, added: “We worked them very hard in Austria with three sessions a day, so the volume of training was excellent last week and Nuno was right on it.

"He wasn't off the pace, far from it, and when the balls came out he showed that he can see a pass, he can score a goal and no matter what age you are, if you have that then it gives you a different edge and a different dimension.

"If he stays fit and away from injuries, then I'm sure he can have an impact this year and next."

Steve said that the club’s recruitment policy this summer would take into consideration both the player’s quality and personality, and Nuno certainly fit the bill.

"He's a real good type,” he added. “He's a professional. He's a guy that has not got a big ego. He's happy to spend time speaking with the younger players.

"He's happy to be around the club trying to help the young guys gain knowledge and gain that very quickly.

"So the overall package is really good for us."

At 36, Nuno has done it all. He is closing in on 80 caps for his country, has scored at three European Championships and played at two World Cups.

And Steve says that experience will be a valuable addition to the squad.

"We saw last year that we lost experience,” he added. “There were times last year when we were a little bit deficient. We had lots of young legs and young heads. But now with Nuno and Danny Murphy, we’ve got two guys that have been around the block and have played so many games.

"So we hope that they can dictate the pace of games. When it needs to be played quicker they'll do that and when there are times when it is a bit frantic they'll know to put their foot on the ball and slow it down and be a little bit more patient.

"I felt last year that we struggled at times to do that and these two players will be able to control the pace and the flow of the game for us."

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