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Santa Cruz glad of Rovers return

By: Akshet Shetty 15 Jan 2011 07:00:22

Santa Cruz glad of Rovers return

Roque Santa Cruz admits his time at Manchester City under Roberto Mancini has been a "frustrating period" after he rejoined Blackburn on loan until the end of the season.

The Paraguay striker returned to Ewood Park on Friday, 18 months after leaving for City in a £17.5million deal. The 29-year-old has found himself behind the likes of Carlos Tevez, Mario Balotelli and Emmanuel Adebayor in the pecking order at Eastlands and has struggled to make an impact under Mancini.

Santa Cruz said: "I felt a bit ignored by the manager. It's been hard not to play, not to be chosen, even though I feel great. It's frustrating, I've been playing a lot through the years with small injuries and just when I feel perfect to play and perform I wasn't selected. I feel like I am coming home, this has been the easiest decision of my career."

He added: "I want to get playing and scoring goals again and this is a real chance for me to prove myself after a frustrating period. Everyone knows what Blackburn Rovers means to me."

Santa Cruz became a huge fan favourite during his first spell at the club, scoring 29 goals in the two years after his arrival from Bayern Munich in 2007.

His move back to east Lancashire contains no provision for a potential permanent deal but the South American admits he would like to stay with Rovers long term.

He added: "Maybe we can do something permanently. Blackburn's always been home to me, they've treated me very well."

Manager Steve Kean has doubt he has made a fine acquisition and believes Santa Cruz will take his team to a new level.

Kean said: "It is about quality - he is fantastic on the ground, has a great touch and obviously his aerial ability has never been in question.

"His overall stature and class is something that can raise the bar for everyone here. This is coming back to somewhere that is special and I am sure he is going to deliver just as good, if not better this time around."


PA

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