Rovers boss weary of window
Blackburn are ready to resist any last-ditch attempt by Manchester City to land Roque Santa Cruz.
By Elliot Ball
Last Updated: 27/01/09 4:45pm
Blackburn are bracing themselves to resist any last-ditch attempt by Manchester City to land Roque Santa Cruz before the transfer window closes.
Rovers have identified the striker as crucial to their campaign to stay in the Premier League and manager Sam Allardyce admits he cannot wait for the window to shut.
Blackburn have already rebuffed a bid in the region of £15million and although City have not returned with an improved offer, their failure to land Kaka has turned the spotlight back onto Santa Cruz.
However Rovers' own position has hardened after Allardyce told club chairman John Williams he has been unable to identify a ready-made replacement for the Paraguay star.
Allardyce, whose team face his old club Bolton on Wednesday, confessed there was still time for City to come back with another mega offer.
He said: "I wish the transfer window was shut, bolted, locked and the keys thrown away.
"But there's still a few days to go and I think there is a lot more panic around the football world, it's a now-or-never situation in terms of players coming in.
"I'm counting the days down in the hope that there is not a phonecall saying one of my players may have to leave because the price you are getting is far too great to turn down.
"We will resist selling anyone if we can."
In terms of City and Santa Cruz he added: "It has been very quiet I'm glad to say, but that's not to say it won't resurrect itself.
"We don't have to sell anybody and that's still the case as far as the chairman and me is concerned.
"I'm just trying to keep the distractions of the transfer window away from the players and make sure there is nothing in their minds apart from winning a football match for Blackburn."
Allardyce has virtually a full squad to choose from with strikers Jason Roberts and Matt Derbyshire back after missing the FA Cup match at Sunderland, as are midfielder David Dunn and defender Andre Ooijer.
Only Keith Treacy is doubtful along with long-term absentee Steven Reid.