Allardyce wants Santa Cruz to remain at Blackburn

Blackburn manager Sam Allardyce has resolved his issues with Roque Santa Cruz and has told the striker he wants him to keep him at the club.

The Paraguay international gave an interview on the eve of Allardyce's first match in charge in which he said if a "better or an ambitious club" came in for him he would like to join them.

Santa Cruz missed Saturday's 3-0 victory at home to Stoke with a calf injury - likely to keep him out of the Boxing Day trip to Sunderland - but Allardyce said at the time he would deal with the player in due course.

Having spoken with Santa Cruz, the Rovers boss is now happy the situation has been resolved.

"We've had the discussion and I just said the timing I thought was very poor," said Allardyce.

"He should have not done that interview. It was not certainly set up by this football club, which was disappointing.

"Obviously I felt it was slightly sinister, the timing of it, but we have resolved that and I have told him I don't want him to leave and that is probably the end of it."

All season Santa Cruz has been linked with a reunion with Manchester City manager Mark Hughes, the man who signed him for Rovers from Bayern Munich in summer 2007.

Since Allardyce took over last Wednesday there have been suggestions the striker, who could command a fee between £15-£20million, would be offloaded to generate necessary funds for squad rebuilding.

But the former Bolton and Newcastle manager said that was not the case.

"You can never be 100% about anything in this game but I haven't come here to sell my best players," he stressed.

Midfielder David Dunn believes some of the criticism levelled at Santa Cruz has been unfair.

The 27-year-old has struggled to regain the form which saw him score 23 goals in his debut season but Dunn said that was not for want of trying.

"Roque is such a good genuine lad. He has been playing with injuries which he shouldn't have been doing," said Dunn.

"He wanted to help the cause and help us get out of the mess. He is one of those guys who is a top lad, always tries his best and is not a bad egg around the place.

"He is 100% committed the cause. I had a chat with him last night about this and will be fine with it."

Dunn admitted that, with Rovers struggling in 19th place in the Barclays Premier League, if an offer from a bigger club came in it would have to be considered.

"Let's be fair, if one of those top four or a top club do come in for him I'm sure the club will make the right decision on what is best for Blackburn Rovers," he added.

"Whether it happens in January, a year down the line or three years down the line, while he is at this football club Roque Santa Cruz will always do his best for it."

One player who has left the club is former Liverpool striker Robbie Fowler, whose contract will not be renewed after the expiration of his three-month deal signed under former boss Paul Ince.

The services of former Arsenal defender Nigel Winterburn, also brought in by Ince as a part-time defensive coach, have also been dispensed with.

"I spoke to Nigel today to say, from my point of view in terms of specialist coaching defensively-wise, I think I can look after that basic area now," said Allardyce.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

HIV pill: Scientists hail discovery of 'game-changer' that cuts the risk of infection among gay men by 86%

Scientists hail daily pill that protects against HIV infection

Breakthrough in battle against global scourge – but will the NHS pay for it?
How we must adjust our lifestyles to nature: Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch

Time to play God

Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch where we may need to redefine nature itself
MacGyver returns, but with a difference: Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman

MacGyver returns, but with a difference

Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman
Tunnel renaissance: Why cities are hiding roads down in the ground

Tunnel renaissance

Why cities are hiding roads underground
'Backstreet Boys - Show 'Em What You're Made Of': An affectionate look at five middle-aged men

Boys to men

The Backstreet Boys might be middle-aged, married and have dodgy knees, but a heartfelt documentary reveals they’re not going gently into pop’s good night
Crufts 2015: Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?

Crufts 2015

Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?
10 best projectors

How to make your home cinema more cinematic: 10 best projectors

Want to recreate the big-screen experience in your sitting room? IndyBest sizes up gadgets to form your film-watching
Manchester City 1 Barcelona 2 player ratings: Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man?

Manchester City vs Barcelona player ratings

Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man at the Etihad?
Arsenal vs Monaco: Monaco - the making of Gunners' manager Arsene Wenger

Monaco: the making of Wenger

Jack Pitt-Brooke speaks to former players and learns the Frenchman’s man-management has always been one of his best skills
Cricket World Cup 2015: Chris Gayle - the West Indies' enigma lives up to his reputation

Chris Gayle: The West Indies' enigma

Some said the game's eternal rebel was washed up. As ever, he proved he writes the scripts by producing a blistering World Cup innings
In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare and murky loyalties prevails

In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare

This war in the shadows has been going on since the fall of Mr Yanukovych
'Birdman' and 'Bullets Over Broadway': Homage or plagiarism?

Homage or plagiarism?

'Birdman' shares much DNA with Woody Allen's 'Bullets Over Broadway'
Broadchurch ends as damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

A damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

Broadchurch, Series 2 finale, review
A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower: inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

Inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower