FANS’ favourite Morten Gamst Pedersen refuses to accept his Blackburn Rovers career is over and admits he could remain at Ewood Park for another year.
The Norwegian midfielder has been told he can leave on a free transfer after nine years at Ewood Park and that has alerted several clubs, both here and in Europe.
But Pedersen, Blackburn’s longest serving player, said: “Blackburn Rovers is the club I love, I’ve played most of my football here and it feels like my home.
“I’ve got a twelve month contract and it is still possible I could stay.
“It is up to me – nobody can force me out.
“I’m part of Blackburn and I’m very proud of that.”
Pedersen, a £1.5m signing from Tromso nearly a decade ago, was linked with a move back to the top flight following Blackburn’s relegation from the Premier League but chose to remain at Ewood Park.
However, Pedersen has not been involved in either of the club’s league matches this season and did not even making the bench for Saturday’s 1-0 defeat to Nottingham Forest.
He added: “It is hard to predict what is going to happen, and although the club said I can leave on a free and I can talk to other clubs, it doesn’t mean I’ve played my last game for Blackburn.
“You just don’t know in football do you?
“So much has been written about my situation recently, but things can change very fast in football.
“I do have so many wonderful memories of what has happened to me at Blackburn in that period, though.
“Memories are always good to have when you get older, and they can also give you a little bit of inspiration as well.
“I really care about the people at Blackburn Rovers, not only my team-mates but the people who work at the training ground, the fans and elsewhere “Many of them have become my friends and that means a lot to me.
“Blackburn will always have a special place in my heart.”
With Blackburn attempting to reduce their wage bill to fall in line with the Football League’s financial fair play regulations, Rovers have confirmed they will not stand in Pedersen’s way if he wants to move on.
Meanwhile, Blackburn Rovers manager Gary Bowyer remained positive after Darius Henderson’s late strike condemned Rovers to their first defeat of the Championship campaign against Nottingham Forest.
“It wasn’t a classic of a game but I thought we showed fighting qualities and we pushed a very good Forest side all the way,” said the Ewood boss.
“But we can play a lot better than that. I always thought it would be a set play, wonder strike, or a mistake that would win the game – and so it proved.
“Our fans will know that we didn’t play as well as we did at Derby, but what they did see was a fighting performance and fighting qualities.”