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Rovers confirm key appointments

13 September 2014

Blackburn Rovers are delighted to announce the appointments of three key personnel.

Manager Gary Bowyer has strengthened his backroom team at Brockhall with the additions of Tommy Johnson, as Head of Player Recruitment, and new Club Doctor Amit Pannu, while Dave Biggar also joins the club on a permanent basis, as Commercial Director.

Tommy made over 500 appearances in a distinguished club career, most notably with Notts County, Derby County, Aston Villa and Celtic.

After hanging up his boots, he had a brief spell scouting for Sven-Goran Eriksson at Leicester City, before becoming assistant manager of Northern Ireland’s Under-17s and Under-21s.

He spent last season working with Cardiff City, as their European Scout, before jumping at the chance to be reunited with some familiar faces at Brockhall.

“I already knew the majority of the coaching staff here, so it’s been an easy transition,” said the former England Under-21 international, who played a key role in Rovers’ trio of deadline day signings.

“I grew up with Gary (Bowyer) as a young lad. We played in the same district team when his dad was at Sunderland, when I think we were about 9 or 10, and then he went to (Nottingham) Forest and I went to Notts (County). I also played with Shorty when I was at Notts County and Derby, so when I got the call, we sorted things out quite quickly, which was great.  

“There’s a great atmosphere around the place. I’ve only been here two weeks, but you can tell straight away. Everyone makes you feel welcome and there’s some setup as well. The facilities here are second to none. If you can’t work here, you can’t work anywhere.”

Dr Pannu, who takes over the role of Club Doctor from Duncan Robertson, has spent the past 11 years working in rugby league, as Chief Medical Officer at Huddersfield Giants since 2003 and First Team Physician with England since 2010.

 He is delighted to make the move into football and to work with Rovers’ renowned medical department.

“I’m very excited about the opportunity and obviously grateful to the club for giving it to me,” he said.

“The reputation of the medical department was a big factor and being able to work with a very good Head of Sports Medicine, Dave Fevre, and to hopefully develop the department further.

“It’s our job to provide the manager with as many fit and available players as possible, so that hopefully we can get ourselves back where we belong.   

“The facilities are second to none here, the lads I’ve met are fantastic, the banter can be a bit tricky at times, but it’s all good-hearted stuff, the staff have made me feel welcome from day one and I haven’t got anything but positives about the place to say.”

Dave brings a wealth of global commercial, marketing and management experience to Ewood Park, having been Commercial Director at Everton, General Sales Manager at Madison Square Garden and Director of Sales & Marketing at both the Manchester Arena and Sheffield Arena.

“I’m delighted to be working with one of the Championship’s elite clubs, which is seeking to re-establish its position in top-flight football,” he said.

“Hopefully my extensive background in sports and entertainment, particularly partnerships, sponsorship, advertising, marketing, corporate membership, hospitality, retail and ticketing complements the collective efforts of the club’s owners, staff, players and indeed supporters, and further improves the commercial operation.

“I’m also pleased to once again be working alongside (Director of Communications) Alan Myers, who manages to balance experience, enthusiasm, positivity and optimism with a real ‘we can do ... we will do’ mentality.”

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