This season we're looking back on that memorable and historic achievement of 1994-95, 25 years on, with a member of that legendary squad.
Paul Warhurst was next to take a trip down memory lane to reflect on some magical times...
Paul, first of all, can you quite believe it’s 25 years since Rovers lifted the Premier League crown?
No, I can’t, but I can when I get out of bed every morning, because my knees are killing me! Time flies doesn’t it? It is unbelievable that it is that amount of time since we did win it, but what fantastic memories.
How did your move to Rovers initially come about?
I moved from Sheffield Wednesday. I knew that Kenny (Dalglish) was interested. I’d done quite well at Sheffield Wednesday. Trevor Francis had stuck me up front, but when I joined the club, I knew that Kenny wanted to play me in a midfield role, which I was quite happy about and was looking forward to. My time here didn’t start very well. I think it was the fifth game when I sustained a double fracture of my leg and was out for almost a year with that, so I’ve got a lot of soured memories of that. But obviously I still had a great four years at the football club and then coincided with winning the Premier League.
With all the players arriving at that time, could you sense that something special was going to happen under Kenny Dalglish?
Yeah, definitely. I think Alan Shearer came in before me and they already had a decent nucleus of players at the football club. We had a good dressing room and that’s the most important thing, because good dressing rooms with good players win you things and that was the case with us.
Just how key was that team spirit and togetherness, in order to get over the line, especially when Manchester United were really putting the pressure on towards the end of the season?
Definitely. I’ve been fortunate and I’ve been in good dressing rooms throughout my career. We had it at Oldham and Sheffield Wednesday was exactly the same. At Blackburn Rovers, without a shadow of a doubt, it was one of the best that I’d been involved in. The character of the boys and the craic that we used to have in the dressing room, you savour that. You don’t realise it at the time, it’s only when you retire from football and you don’t have that from day-to-day that you realise how much you miss it. But the dressing room that we had, that Kenny (Dalglish) and Ray (Harford) built was phenomenal. There were some great characters in there.
What was the title-winning season like to be part of and how did it feel right at the end?
I just remember it being a roller-coaster. Mentally it was draining. Mentally it was tough. I missed the end of the season because I broke my leg – my second break – so I was on crutches when everyone was celebrating at Anfield. But it was a dream to be involved in things like that. It doesn’t come along often, unless you’re at top, top, top clubs, like Manchester United, so for a club like Blackburn Rovers, to come from where they’d come from, with the help of Jack (Walker), it was phenomenal.
What was Jack Walker like and what did it mean for him to bring the Premiership crown to Blackburn?
I think it meant the world to him. I don’t think you can put it into words to be honest. He used to come into the changing room after games and you could just see around the place. Everything clicked and if you’re going to win Premier League titles, that’s what you need to happen.
Was it the pinnacle of your career?
It’s got to be. The only disappointment and tinge that I had with it was obviously not being able to be involved in it as much as I would have liked. I think I played 20-odd games, through injury and the broken leg at the end of the season, so that was the only tinge of disappointment for me, but certainly the highlight of my career. You were back at Ewood Park for the game against Luton Town.
Do you always enjoy coming back to Ewood and do you still keep an eye out for the club’s results?
Yes, it’s fantastic coming back. There’s a fantastic set of supporters here. There’s been some tough times here, but hopefully they’re through that and on the other side of that now, and they can try and build the club, and success for the club will follow.