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Henchoz Signs New Rovers Contract

Blackburn Rovers defender Stephen Henchoz has signed an extension to his current contract that was due to expire in the summer.

The former Swiss International returned to Ewood Park during the summer some seven-years after leaving for Liverpool in a 3.5 million deal in 1999; arriving as a free agent following his release by Wigan Athletic at the end of last season. His performances have convinced Mark Hughes to extend his stay until the summer of 2008 at least with his deal set to have expired at the end of the current campaign.

I have been impressed with Henchoz on the whole since his return but I am still slightly surprised that he has been offered a new deal as I thought he would maybe be released in the summer? But there is no substitute for experience and he certainly has plenty of this and will only add further strength in depth to the squad and help the development of the youngsters.

Injury forced Henchoz to miss Saturday's victory over Sheffield United but he has still featured in 14 matches since his return and is just three appearances short of one hundred for Rovers in total, a milestone that you would expect him to reach before the month is out?

What do you make of the contract extension Henchoz has gained, and what have your thoughts been on his performances since his return? As always add your comments below...

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The Journalist

Writer: Walker Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Tuesday February 6 2007

Time: 10:36AM

Your Comments

Hedgehog has been on the whole impressive for me, his experience has and will add greater strength in depth so can only be a good thing for Rovers. This will almost certainly spell and end to Todd's Rovers career, which was always likely in the summer anyway. I'm not sure Hedgehog will play much next season but if called upon I'm certain he'll do a job, quality cover worth keeping even if I didn't think this would happen.
Hughes Da Man
It's great it's sorted now rather than the risk of a bosman in the summer
bmb
Very true bmb, the sort of quality and experience he has could have proved priceless for a team maybe just gaining promotion so they would have been laughing, as it is this can be the case for Rovers and should others come sniffing they'll have to pay something won't they.
Hughes Da Man
Now you're just trying to beat me to it arent you, lol, i like it! I was surprised by this, although it makes sense, similarly, why bring in Gomaa when we have a player the same age but IS proven in the premiership, so probably a good move for cover reasons, although I would like to see a younger partner for the Admiral, maybe West Ham will sell Danny Gabbidon to us when they get relegated, cos with Upson and Daventport n Ferdinand, he isnt gonna get a game anytime soon and I know Hughes rates him.
BomBom
I wouldnt of bothered seeing Henchoz go. He really got caught out against Chelsea and his pace and match fitness seems to be deteriorating. With signings of Samba and Berner who can play right and central backs, and Eddie Nolan hopefully emerging, i was really surprised keeping Henchoz, but then again, experience is always and advantage
sasman
In fairness to Henchoz he was carrying an injury in the Chelsea game but his pace will see him get caught out but experience and postitional sense can cover for this sometimes. Quality cover helping the youngsters along the way so a good move when it is thought about really! What do you mean BomBom trying to beat you? You could be right about Gabbidon you know?
Hughes Da Man
Hedgehog HDM! I would like to see some quality younger cover come in and someone like Gabbs would be a good aquisition for Rovers, to be honest, i was very surprised he didnt go for him when he went to West Ham for the ridiculous price of 1.2 Million. Mind you, I thought he wouldve gone for Earnie too when he left West Brom
BomBom
Its a name my brother gave him so I use it. Personally if keeping Hedgehog means the younger players we already have here will have more chance of progressing then I'd rather this than youngser cover brought in. If this is the case then the young talent we have here will never get a game as the younger cover brought in will be ahead of them.
Hughes Da Man
Thats the trade off though isnt it. Personally, i would rather have stephen warnock and lose Jay. Personally i would rather have gabbidon and lose, for example, eddie nolan. These guys are proven success' in the PL and not much older than the guys in the ressies. Unless Nolan does a "Given" (goes on loan and shows he almost world class) there is no way he is going to force a run of games in the team as he is an unknown quantity.
BomBom
I hear you but if thats the case though you may as well not have an award winning academy? But I too would rather have Stevie Warnock if I'm honest over Jay. With the Admiral, Henchoz, Ooijer, Zurab and the Axe couldn't this be viewed as enough experience centrally with the kids then being eased in? If a younger player was brought in as experienced cover this only leaves the kids further down and even less likely to make any kind of breakthrough...
Hughes Da Man
I agree but look at the facts on this HDM, you got GOD - 29, Henchoz - 33, Ooijer - 32, Zurab - 27, Todd - 32. mokoena is only 26 but has not convinced me that he is of the same quality of the others mentioned. So, with that lot, would you rather Henchoz and/or Todd over Gabbidon who is 26 and has a host of experience, both premiership and international? That is my main point. As regard the academy, naturally, you want the best players to come through and you dont really know if you have a gem on your hands till he gets a run in the first team, however, a talent would force their way in, a la Duff, Dunn, Derbyshire oppsed to being a short term stop gap until player X returns from injury/suspension etc.
BomBom
I see both sides of the coin here, I really do. An Ooijer, God partnership next season and maybe (although unlikely?) even the one after gives the youngsters next season to break through. Those that will will step up from the current crop would do so (in my opinion) in the next year or so, if not they'll move on or be moved on as they clearly wouldn't be good enough for this level.
Hughes Da Man
 

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