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By ESPN Staff

Rovers keen to keep McCarthy

Blackburn chairman John Williams is confident Benni McCarthy will remain at Ewood Park.

The South African striker has been linked with some top European clubs after scoring 24 goals in his debut season in England.

Blackburn now appear top heavy with forwards after the £3.3million arrival of Roque Santa Cruz from Bayern Munich.

He joins McCarthy, Jason Roberts, Matt Derbyshire and fellow new recruit Maceo Rigters in vying for one of two places up front.

Williams is adamant, however, they have no intention of selling any of their stars.

'I think our big players will still want to be here. We certainly want to hold on to them,' he said.

'We are rebuilding and I am confident in the squad we have. We have every reason to feel excited.

'The manager (Mark Hughes) is going to have some headaches selecting his side but that is a nice problem to have. I am rather pleased about that.

'You need a strong squad to compete in the toughest league in the world. We aim to improve year on year and I am hopeful we can do this time around.'

Blackburn may add one or two more names before the window closes on August 31 but Williams insists they will never pay over the odds for a player.

He said: 'The market is overheated and paying £3.3million for Roque when there was lots of interest in him represents great value.

'It is still a great deal of money but not when you compare it to the numbers clocking around.

'We need Roque to be a success and I sure he will be.

'Mind you I wish it was September 1 and not August 1, so the window was closed.'