Blackburn Rovers' loan striker Franco di Santo, whose performance and first Premier League goal against Burnley underlined his rich potential, has hinted that he would rather stay and play at Ewood Park than return to Chelsea and warm the bench.
"I hope to get back to Chelsea and play," said the 20-year-old Argentine. "If I go back and don't play, it is less good for me. It depends on the situation. I need to play games and score goals. If I go back to Chelsea I will try my best but if I stay here I will continue my education."
Di Santo, who will miss Rovers' trip to Stamford Bridge on Saturday under the terms of the loan deal, has clearly warmed to the reception he has received in Lancashire. "I hope Blackburn win next week," he said. "Now I play for them and want to do my best for them. When I go back to Chelsea, I will want the best for them."
The striker has started only eight times for Chelsea since he was signed from the Chilean team Audax Italiano in January 2008 and has not scored for the club. The arrival of Daniel Sturridge in the summer and the pressure to develop English talent makes his prospects of a breakthrough look even tougher.
"I have not spoken to [Carlo] Ancelotti since I came here but I think I will speak to him next week," Di Santo said. "He told me before I left that I needed to play more and for that experience I have come here. But I am relaxed. I will try to do my best. If I end up going back to Chelsea, I will do so with more experience and more games under my belt."
Blackburn manager Sam Allardyce does not expect the player to stay beyond January. "I do not think that there is any real chance of that," he said. "There is a transfer ban on Chelsea and with the African Nations coming up they will probably need him. Di Santo is terrific – he is a young man learning his trade. He has finally got a chance to start some games and he has grasped it."Reuse content