Bassett poised to take over at Palace

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The Independent Online
Dave Bassett is expected to be named as the new manager of Crystal Palace within the next few days. The former Sheffield United manager is set to take over from Ray Lewington and Peter Nicholas, who were appointed first-team coaches last summer.

Lewington and Nicholas, who seem certain to leave the club, took over last summer after the departure of Alan Smith. A new management structure at Selhurst Park also saw Steve Coppell appointed as technical director. Coppell is expected to stay despite Bassett's arrival.

After the departure of most of last season's first-team squad, Palace made a mediocre start to this season, but their form has improved lately and they have lost only once in their last 11 First Division games.

However, there have been rumours in recent weeks that Ron Noades, the Palace chairman, wanted to bring in Bassett, whom he has known for years. Bassett, who recently left Sheffield United to be replaced by Howard Kendall, was appointed manager by Palace once before, in the early 1980s, but on that occasion left after less than a week.

Jimmy Nicholl, the manager of Raith Rovers, is to fill the managerial vacancy at Millwall. "I have been in touch with Millwall and agreed a three-year deal and they want me to start on Saturday," the former Northern Ireland international said. "I hope compensation can be agreed between the clubs as I don't want my time here to end sourly."

Nicholl will take over at the Endsleigh League First Division club from Mick McCarthy, who succeeded Jack Charlton as Republic of Ireland manager earlier this week.

Sir John Hall, the chairman of Newcastle, is convinced Faustino Asprilla will soon be transferred to Tyneside. Sir John confirmed personal terms and medical details have been settled and he sees nothing standing in the way of Asprilla's move from Parma.

"We should get a work permit and I cannot see any reason why we should not complete the deal," he said. Asprilla is expected to return to St James' Park later this week to finalise details.

In a surprise move, Swansea, struggling in the Second Division, named Kevin Cullis as their new manager. Cullis has never played at League level, and since 1992 has been the manager of Cradley Town's youth side in the West Midlands League.