Ball declines Hagi deal but signs Spaniard

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The Premiership strugglers Manchester City have taken the Barcelona striker, Thomas Christiansen, on loan after turning down a similar offer which would have also seen the Romanian, Gheorghe Hagi, at Maine Road.

City moved for Christiansen, whom they have an option to buy for pounds 500,000, after a recommendation by Barcelona's coach, Johan Cruyff, who is a close friend of Alan Ball - but the City manager was unable to take up an offer regarding Hagi because they could not afford the midfielder's wages, said to be around pounds 12,000 a week.

Dan Petrescu's pounds 2.6m transfer from Sheffield Wednesday to Chelsea is in danger of collapsing because of conflicting medical opinions on the player. According to Wednesday, Chelsea are trying to renegotiate the transfer at a lower price.

Everton are prepared to sell Anders Limpar, who has been linked with a return to Arsenal, for pounds 2m. Meanwhile, John Harkes has been cleared to join West Ham on loan from the United States Soccer Federation and he will play against his former club, Sheffield Wedesday, at Hillsborough today.