Blackburn priced out of van Nistelrooy scalp

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The Independent Online

Blackburn manager Sam Allardyce believes he has been priced out of a move for Real Madrid striker Ruud van Nistelrooy.

The former Manchester United forward has slipped down the pecking order at the Bernabeu and Allardyce was interested in bringing the 32-year-old back to England.

However, the Rovers boss said the Dutchman's wages were proving prohibitive to any move, with his current level of fitness also contributing to his decision not to pursue any transfer.

Van Nistelrooy missed much of last season with a knee injury.

"I think probably Ruud, from a salary point of view, is out of our reach," he said.

"And I think he is not going to be fit until September, so that is not going to be what we are looking for at the moment.

"We need someone right now who can join up with the squad as soon as we can."

Allardyce also denied he had made an approach for Portsmouth and England striker Peter Crouch - also on financial grounds.

"We think he is probably out of our reach and bigger clubs than Blackburn will take him if Portsmouth decide they are going to sell him.

"No-one has said to me from Portsmouth that he is for sale so we haven't done anything from that point of view."

The Rovers boss also dismissed speculation linking Egypt striker Amr Zaki, who spent last season on loan at Wigan, with the club.

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