Thomas Kaminski chooses ‘massive attribute’ for Blackburn Rovers

Thomas Kaminski has underlined the importance of Daniel Ayala’s role as Rovers secured back-to-back wins and clean sheets to start the season.

Kaminski was well protected by those before him in the opening two games, with Rovers allowing just three shots on target in wins over QPR and Swansea City.

A strong defensive unit was key to the 1-0 and 3-0 wins, much to the Belgian’s delight.

While Rovers lost captain Darragh Lenihan, player of the year Jan Paul van Hecke and first-team regular Ryan Nyambe from their defensive unit over the summer, the fitness of experienced figure Ayala has was the key.

The Spaniard has been influential at the heart of the Rovers defence, with Rovers knowing the importance of keeping the 31-year-old fit after seeing him make just 32 appearances in his first two seasons at the club.

“I think Dan is a leader and it shows on the pitch,” Kaminski explained.

“He’s a huge attribute for us in the team, with set plays, and I enjoy playing with him.

“I think all the older guys have to take on the leadership role on the pitch and Dan is one of them. It’s natural for him.

“He also adheres to the manager’s demands.”

Kaminski has also taken on more responsibility and behind Ayala is the second oldest player in the squad despite being only 29 years old.

He won Player of the Year in his first season at the club and kept 13 clean sheets last year.

It’s a figure he’s aiming to improve on in this campaign, with Rovers off to a perfect start with shutouts in their opening two matches.

“For a goalkeeper, it can’t be better. I think we had a clear plan today and I think it would be perfect,” he explained.

“We talked a lot during the pre-season weeks that clean sheets are going to give you wins and that’s a good base to build from.

“I think the defense was solid again and in the next two games it will be difficult as well, but we have gained confidence.”

As well as the perfect start for players and defenders, it has also been a 100% start for new head coach Jon Dahl Tomasson.

Kaminski believes there was an increased focus on intensity as well as team form which was crucial in their victory in South Wales.

“There’s a new manager coming in and everyone wants to show up and I think it’s worked perfectly so far,” added Kaminski.

“Intensity and discipline in our form, as well as on the ball, he is also demanding.

“I think he’s very demanding on discipline and form and that’s something we work on every day.

“There are demands on the players on and off the ball and in form we are well organised.

“You can see on the pitch that we are tight, we dropped a few crosses but that’s how we wanted to defend.

“You can see the benefit of that.

“We were a bit below where we wanted to play, but it was the best way to do it.”

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