Santa Cruz signs new deal at Rovers

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The Independent Football

The Blackburn rovers striker Roque Santa Cruz, who was the subject of a bid from Manchester City earlier this summer and has attracted the interest of several other clubs, has committed himself to Rovers by signing a new four-year deal.

The 27-year-old Paraguay international now has a contract at Ewood Park until 2012. Santa Cruz was hugely impressive in his debut Premier League campaign after moving to Lancashire from Bayern Munich for less than £4m last summer, scoring 23 goals in all competitions. That tally led his former manager at Rovers, Mark Hughes, to attempt to take him to Manchester City.

Yesterday, before the striker signed the deal, Blackburn's vice-captain David Dunn emphasised the importance of keeping Santa Cruz and his fellow striker Benni McCarthy at Ewood Park.

"I don't think any player, certainly not those two, will be leaving," Dunn said. "As a Blackburn fan it would be a tragedy if they left."

Meanwhile, the Premier League newcomers West Bromwich Albion yestersay completed the signing of Borja Valero from the La Liga club Real Mallorca for a club record fee of £4.7m.

The 23-year-old midfielder has signed a four-year contract. The Spaniard is the Baggies' ninth signing of the summer, taking their spending past £20m.