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Blackburn have signed Kalinic for long term

Blackburn boss Sam Allardyce is happy for summer signing Nikola Kalinic to be eased gradually into Premiership competition. The 21-year-old striker has scored two Carling Cup goals since his £6million move from Hajduk Split but has yet to open his account in seven substitute appearances in the Barclays Premier League.

The Rovers boss said: "You are sick to death of people asking, 'When is Niko going to play, when is Niko going to play?'

"That always happens at my level when you get anybody, on a free transfer or whether they were bought for £6million.

"We play them when they are ready and we expect the rest of the lads, who are experienced in the Premier League, to make sure we don't have to throw them in before they are quite ready.

"When they are ready and they go in, then they start getting the confidence they need to play in this league, because it is the hardest league in the world."

Allardyce added in the Lancashire Telegraph: "I am not going to throw anyone in too early because they might never come back.

"I use the example of one of the best strikers in the world - (former Chelsea striker) Andrei Shevchenko.

"His confidence was destroyed because he got used before he was ready for the Premier League.

"The last thing we want when we spend £6million is for it not too work.

"It is not about working today or tomorrow, it is about working for the next four years of his contract."

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