Even though it has been over five years since he turned out for Blackburn Rovers, there will be a few fans at Ewood Park scratching their heads that a former club flop is linked with a £38m transfer to China according to sources such as The Sun.
Kalinic arrived in Lancashire from Croatian side Hajduk Split at the beginning of August 2009 for a fee approaching £6m. Much was expected of the player who the previous summer had made the first of what would go on to me currently 31 international appearances that have borne 12 goals.
You sign strikers for the goals that they have in them, goals that win games, games that win titles. Before arriving at Blackburn, goals were a currency that Kalinic knew well with the 6ft 1.5in striker scoring 33 times over 59 appearances for the Croatian giants.
Sadly though, that form didn’t translate to his arrival in English football and Blackburn fans saw 13 goals across 53 appearances, this eventually resulting in a £5m transfer to Ukranian side Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk mid-August 2011.
Four years later and the player considered a flop at Blackburn finds himself on the end of £4m transfer to Serie A and current side Fiorentina. It is his form here, 25 goals and 10 assists in 66 games, that has seen the player attract Chinese interest.
The Sun says that Kalinic “is on the verge of moving to China in a staggering £38m deal,” this coming after a report from La Gazzetta dello Sport broke the news. The Chinese club in question are Super League side Tianjin Quanjian who will be continuing the trend of culling European talent for eye-watering price tags.
Whilst it has been five years, you can guarantee that there will be some head-scratching going on in Lancashire.
Breaking news – Twitter reacts to Kalinic transfer for £38m
Fiorentina have sold Kalinic, formerly of Blackburn, to a Chinese club for €45m 🙄 pic.twitter.com/zGmqDzcyFW
— Freebets.co.uk (@freebetscouk) January 6, 2017
Meanwhile some fans can’t seem to hold back the sarcasm at how it has panned out for Blackburn in this matter.
Fiorentina got 45m for Kalinic from a Chinese club. Oh wow 😂😂. Blackburn fans must be gutted they didn't have such luck.
— Tom (@GoonerBear93) January 6, 2017
Remember former Blackburn striker Nikola Kalinic? His on his way to China for fucking £38 million. Yes that's THIRTY EIGHT MILLION POUNDS..
— ⚽Sam⚽ (@Special1JoseM) January 6, 2017