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Santa Cruz looking to Spain

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Santa Cruz
Santa Cruz

As per Guillem Balague:

"Unfortunately I`m not playing as I'd like. The club has invested heavily, competition for places is great and I'm working every day to try and convince the coach ... but I'm still not getting picked. The situation is very complicated, I wanted to think well of it,  but I'm not getting the playing time to convince anybody and my priority is to leave in the January transfer market"

"The coach has opted for certain players and on top of that his system plays with just the one striker, so I have even fewer options."    

If the season so far has confirmed anything, it is that Roque Santa Cruz has no future at the club.

Little more than a year after a protracted - and expensive - transfer brought him to the club, it is likely that the Paraguayan has played his last game after just twenty-two games (eight starts and fourteen substitute appearances) and four goals for an outlay of around £18 million.

Santa Cruz has of course been beset by injury problems seemingly since he signed, with the 2009/10 season punctuated by absences that afforded him little opportunity to get his City career off the ground. Ironic in some ways that following his World Cup participation, he has enjoyed his longest injury-free spell.

However, with Roberto Mancini favouring just one striker and Mario Balotelli returning to fitness it leaves him some way down the pecking order - with Mancini even preferring one time outcast Jo ahead of him.

Although a move to Lazio appeared to break down during the last transfer window, there may not be an abundance of suitors on a permanent basis given his fragile history, leaving Santa Cruz packing his bags on a temporary basis with a loan deal that could be the springboard for a permanent move in the summer that would bring an end to a very unfulfilled career at the club.