The Paraguayan striker has grown increasingly unhappy at Manchester City, but with his family settled in the area he is keen to stay in the north west.
Blackburn are ready to pay £4 million for Santa Cruz, with new owners Venky's providing Sam Allardyce with the cash he needs in January.
Santa Cruz joined City for £17m, so the deal would represent a sizeable loss for the money men at Eastlands.
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The Daily Star reckons Stephen Ireland is desperate to leave Aston Villa, after starting just five of 14 games this season.
Ireland is valued at around £8m, and unsurprisingly Fulham have been linked to a bid.
Mark Hughes worked with Ireland at Manchester City and would welcome the chance to bring him to Craven Cottage.