Date: 22nd August 2008 at 9:24am
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Blackburn Rovers striker Roque Santa Cruz remains the subject of much speculation, and with Aston Villa one of the clubs understood to be desperate to sign him now Villa goalkeeper Brad Friedel has spoken of his quality.

The former Rovers goalkeeper believes that Santa Cruz (despite costing a fraction of what Fernando Torres cost Liverpool) is pound for pound as good as Torres. This is something that we heard said previously and was said this time as Friedel gave his verdict when questioned about the speculation linking the Paraguayan with a move away from Ewood Park. However, Friedel wouldn’t be drawn on the speculation as to where he might go (if he did leave Ewood) although he doesn’t even expect Rovers to sell him.

Friedel is quoted on Sky Sports: “As far as transfer speculation is concerned I know nothing about whether he is going to go or stay.

“For me, last season he was probably one of the top three buys in the Premier League. He’s up there with Fernando Torres pound for pound.

“He is just the whole package, good in the air, he can hold the ball, it was a great return for what Blackburn paid.

“But when it comes to transfer money, I don’t even know if he is saleable what with myself and Bentley already gone, you’d have to call John Williams (Blackburn chairman) and ask him that.


However, the former American International did say how tough a season he thought Rovers could have IF they allowed Santa to also leave.

He added: “It would be tough if three of us were to leave in one summer.

“I can’t believe people passed up on him last year, maybe they were thrown off by his injuries. I can’t say enough good things about Roque Santa Cruz. He’s a lovely fellow and a great guy.


Santa Cruz WON’T leave Rovers anyway will he!!! We can’t afford him to leave that much is clear. Reports in the media are saying that Villa will offer as much as £16 million for him, even if that is true then we MUST reject the offers.


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14 Replies to “Friedel: Santa Cruz Is As Good As Torres”

  • Bradders has rightly talked him up, and although he might not have directly said that he will go to Villa it is obvious what the media were trying to do in these questions to him.

  • No doubting Santa Cruz is a fantastic player, but for me, Torres is on another level to any other striker in the world at the moment

  • Would love him at the Villa, but would feel sorry for you guys, as Brad says, losing 3 top players would be bad, but then again Ince needs to mould his team, not Hughes’s. On that note do you think you’ll be taking fewer chunks out of other players now his agressive style has gone? Very funny Man Citeh have started doing the same!!! Good luck for the season.

  • reject what eva the price cus wivout him we will probs get relagted tbh and they would cost more then 20 mill

  • I would say that Torres and Cruz are totally different players, Personally i think that Cruz is a better all-round striker, im NOT taking away from the fantastic player that Torres is but from wot i see he more of the runner, relying on his blistering pace and will shoot on sight, Cruz is better at holding up play, scores with both feet and headers. both players are good and Torres has justifeied more than enough his heavy price tag, but when it comes down to scoring goals then I dont think there is much between them

  • I don’t think he would leave us for Villa unless come to January we were really struggling and Villa were looking contenders for the top 4. But the new deal also means he would be very expensive. However I’m very confident Roque will remain a Rover for the foreseeable future.

  • I luv Rocky but i don’t think he is as good as Torres………….he is however, as effective on a football pitch in that he has no real flaws to his game!! So glad he has signed, great great news

  • My question is why are the media trying to get Brad Friedel stir up *****. The Villa fans didn’t like Gerrard talking bout how good Barry is just as we don’t want a Villa player talking about a Blackburn player I’m just glad that Roque has signed and shown two fingers to everyone.

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