Former Real Madrid striker Raul has reportedly turned down an offer to join Premier League side Blackburn Rovers.
His current club Schalke, who signed him from Real Madrid 12 months ago, accepted the offer for the 34-year-old, that followed earlier reports in the summer of a poor relationship with their latest Coach, Ralf Rangnick, and the cost of his wages.
Stories first emerged last month of Rangnick and Raul’s
However, Raul has another year left on his €4m annual salary to run and refused to even negotiate with Blackburn, informing the German club of his intention to stay with them. Although clashing with Rangnick’s frustration in July at a lack of options in the transfer market in light of Schalke’s finances, and his declaration that Raul ‘lacks spark’ to lead the team’s attack, the message coming from the club appears to have fallen back in favour of keeping hold of the three-time European Cup winner.
Indeed, the club’s general manager Horst Heldt confirmed the offer was received on Monday, but also said they would not release the player unless he wanted to leave. This was followed by Rangnick’s claims to have spoken with the striker to clear the air – declaring everything was ‘all ok!’ – and Raul’s subsequent refusal to consider the move.
Despite reports and in some cases confirmation from club management to the contrary, Schalke appear to now be as happy as Raul is for him to remain in Germany for another year. Malaga are also rumoured to have approached the club with an opportunity for him to return to La Liga, but tellingly it is understood that the player is confident he can return to this option, or one with the MLS, in 2012.