Big Sam will sell Santa Cruz... for £40 million

Sam Allardyce has issued a 'hands-off' warning to any fellow Premier League team pondering a bid for Paraguayan striker Roque Santa Cruz before the January transfer window closes. Big Sam is a firm believer that the striker could hold the key to Rovers maintaining their Premier League status this season and so would be foolish to flog the front-man for anything less than £40 million, the amount of money staying in the top flight is worth.

"There’s £40m per year at stake to stay in the Premier League and I don’t think anyone is going to offer us £40m for Roque Santa Cruz," he said. "Roque’s value as a player is far greater for us than what anyone could give us in money terms."

Rovers have already rejected two approaches from Manchester City for the Paraguayan, with rumours suggesting City, still reeling after being rejected by AC Milan's Kaka, will make one final swoop for the striker before the transfer window slams shut.

Santa Cruz had hinted at a desire to play alongside the Brazilian at Eastlands, however the likelihood of him leaving Ewood Park before the summer now appears slim.

"Certainly to have a player like Kaka in your side would be great," he said. "I know City are a team looking to become big in the future. They have a lot of ambition. They are looking to bring in some big players and aiming for the Champions League.

"It might seem strange but I do love Blackburn but I also want to go on and play for a bigger team and achieve more."

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