£6m Blackburn Rovers flop Nikola Kalinic aiming for Europa League glory this evening

Poland National Stadium Warsaw

The Croatian striker may start up front for Dnipro against Sevilla tonight in Poland.

You might have heard the rumour that Blackburn Rovers tried to sign Robert Lewandowski in 2010 - but Sam Allardyce’s plans were scuppered by the volcanic ash cloud caused by Icelandic peak Eyjafjallajokull.

You might have even heard that Big Sam instead signed Nikola Kalinic for a fee reported by The Sun to have been in the region of £6 million.

Considering that Kalinic signed for Blackburn in August 2009 - seven months before the ash cloud grounded international flight, that is unlikely.

However the fact remains that Kalinic, who arrived with a big reputation from Hajduk Split never really came good at Ewood Park - especially considering his handsome price-tag.

Upon his arrival he was immediately earmarked as the replacement for Roque Santa Cruz - but things just did not take off for the young Croatian.

In his two seasons in Lancashire he scored just 13 goals in 53 appearances and moved to Ukrainian challengers Dnipro Dniproprovetsk in 2011.

Now he is on the brink of silverware on the continental stage.

Dnipro take on Sevilla tonight in the final of the 2014-15 UEFA Europa League. The Ukrainian side have performed a minor miracle in making it this far - knocking the likes of Napoli, Ajax and Olympiakos out along the way.

Kalinic may even be asked to start in the final. Their first-choice striker Yevhen Seleznyov has a knee injury and is a major doubt for the game.

Quite a turnaround for the player, who had such little impact at Blackburn Rovers not so long ago.

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