Sam Allardyce hails Nikola Kalinic’s potential

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Blackburn Rovers striker Nikola Kalinic has been backed to enjoy major success this season by Ewood Park boss Sam Allardyce.

The 22-year-old Croatian started the campaign with the only goal of the game in a 1-0 win over Everton, with Allardyce excited by Kalinic's work over the summer.

He told the Lancashire Telegraph:"Strength-wise, he is a different person to how he was when he came. He was like a little boy when he came here with a lot of puppy fat on him.

"We have tried to turn him into a man and you can see that physical presence there. This guy is a tough boy. He takes the stick and then he starts giving it back.

"There is no intimidation that I have seen from any central defender in the Premier League and to be able to stand up to that at his age, he is one mean boy.

"They are going to have a tough time marking him when he gets even stronger and fitter than he has.

"He is obviously going to get better from here.

"The confidence he is going to get from the goal will take his mentality up a level and take his confidence up a level and when the next one comes around, he will take it without thinking about it.

"Hopefully he will go on a bit of a roll from there."

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