Sadly we won't see Raul of the Rovers as he rejects Ewood

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The Independent Football

Blackburn Rovers' hopes of signing one of the most successful players of all time appeared to be dead last night after Raul rejected the chance of a move to Ewood Park from the German side Schalke 04.

Raul, who has one year left on his contract, earns £100,000 a week at Schalke, but Blackburn were asking the three-times European Cup winner to take a pay cut to £70,000 a week – the same amount Rovers offered in an attempt to persuade Phil Jones to stay at the club rather than head to Manchester United earlier this summer.

The Bundesliga club claimed they want to keep the former Real Madrid forward (where he became good friends with Blackburn's Michel Salgado during his 16 years at the club) but there is a suspicion they went public on Rovers' interest to try to force a bidding war.

Schalke's manager, Horst Heldt, told the club's website last night that Raul had rejected the move.