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Rovers still hold out Raul hope

Blackburn Rovers boss Steve Kean believes there is still hope the club could sign Schalke striker Raul.

• Raul snubs Blackburn
• Rangnick plays down Raul talk
• Vukcevic set for Rovers

Raul, 34, signed for Schalke from Real Madrid last summer and helped the side to the Champions League semi-finals in his debut season, but it has been reported he is unsettled at the club.

Blackburn, who have been keen to add to their attack, have already made an approach but Schalke general manager Horst Heldt said Raul had asked to cancel the negotiations as he wanted to stay put.

However, Kean feels a deal may still be possible and claims Rovers defender Michel Salgado, a long-time team-mate of Raul at Real Madrid, thinks the striker may be open to a move to Ewood Park.

"Speaking to Michel we had the impression it was doable," Kean said. "We had the funds in place to make it happen. He was anxious to give us a go and I don't think it's dead and buried."

Raul was left out of the Schalke side that lost 2-0 to HJK Helsinki in the Europa League on Thursday night, officially because they did not want to risk him on the artificial pitch in Finland.

Meanwhile, Blackburn are due to complete the signing of Sporting Lisbon attacking midfielder Simon Vukcevic, and the Lancashire Telegraph says American centre-back George John, 24, and Hoffenheim striker Vedad Ibisevic, 25, are both in talks. The paper adds that Kean is considering a move for Arsenal midfielder Henri Lansbury and could attempt to bring in Liverpool's Danny Wilson and Manchester City's Dedryk Boyata on loan to add defensive cover.

Kean, though, does not intend to make any loan signings until the end of the month. "The three players we are hoping to sign are all permanent and the fourth would be permanent as well," he said. "We are keeping our loans for last minute stuff."

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