Boro given final piece of fixture jigsaw
Wednesday 16 April 1997
Middlesbrough, who start an eight-games-in-26-days finish to the season with their Coca-Cola Cup final replay against Leicester at Hillsborough tonight, backed Manchester United's plea last week to have the season extended to give their players rest between matches. But the Premier League insisted there could be no U-turn, after rejecting United's request.
Middlesbrough, like United, face four games in nine days to complete the season on 11 May. Keeping the Spurs game in the same week as the FA Cup replay was the Premier League's only alternative to an extension.
The Premier League and the Football League have now agreed to set up a special commission to produce a long-term skeleton fixture list to ensure as far as possible that a repeat of this season's congestion does not occur again.
David Elleray, who sent one player off, awarded two penalties and was involved in a controversial incident when a Chesterfield shot - as video replays clearly showed - rebounded over the line off the crossbar, yesterday did his best to deflect growing criticism of his performance in Sunday's semi-final.
He said: "I think referees accept they come under intense scrutiny every day in the media. They have to make an honest decision with their own eyes in a very quick time, and it is not easy."
The hopes of Colin Todd, the Bolton Wanderers manager, of doing a club record pounds 2.3m deal for Brann Bergen's Norwegian international striker Tore Andre Flo have been dented by the Dutch league leaders PSV Eindhoven, who were impressed when he helped knock them out of Europe earlier this season.
Dave Watson, the Everton caretaker manager, has denied reports from Italy suggesting Everton are set to sign the Roma midfielder Francesco Moriero. "As far as I'm concerned there is no truth in it," Watson said. "There will be no new signings until a new manager is appointed here at the end of the season."
Birmingham City have cancelled the contract of their Swedish international winger Anders Limpar after only a three-month spell at St Andrews. Their manager, Trevor Francis, said that signing Limpar from Everton for pounds 100,000 in January was an unsuccessful gamble.
The Football Association of Wales management committee met at a hotel near Wrexham last night to discuss the charges of racism levelled at their manager, Bobby Gould, by the Bolton striker Nathan Blake. The result is to be conveyed to today's meeting of the full FAW Council, after which an announcement will be made.
Ruud Gullit has been asked by Nelson Mandela to return to the Dutch national side for a special friendly against South Africa in June. In 1987, when the Chelsea player-manager was named European Footballer of the Year, playing for Milan, he dedicated his prize to Mandela, at the time still in prison.
Latest in Sport
Phil Jagielka: I may never win back England place, says Everton defender
Mario Balotelli: Staff at arson-hit Manchester Dogs' Home convinced Liverpool striker is behind five-figure donation
Rio Ferdinand mocks Jamie Carragher's Liverpudlian accent... but Liverpool man hits back at Londoner
Colombian women's cycling team kit that makes wearer appear naked is branded 'unacceptable' by UCI president
Comment: Alan Pardew is just a stooge for Mike Ashley who runs Newcastle like his shops – cheap foreign imports and a tame manager
- 2 Friends 20th anniversary: Alison Jackson photographs reunited cast
- 3 A bottle of wine a day is not bad for you and abstaining is worse than drinking, scientist claims
- 5 Free U2 album: How the most generous giveaway in music history turned into a PR disaster
Daniele Watts: Django Unchained actress detained by Los Angeles police after being mistaken for a prostitute
Scottish independence referendum: A nation divided against itself
Scottish independence: David Cameron is becoming the 'George Bush of Britain'
Russia freezes Ukraine into submission: Kiev admits country doesn't have enough fuel for winter
Scottish independence: The Queen breaks silence on referendum debate – as think tank warns of £14bn black hole if Scotland votes Yes
Archbishop of Canterbury admits doubts about existence of God
£30000 - £35000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Marketing Manager (CIM, B2B, MS Offi...
£22000 - £25000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A highly successful organisation wit...
£1 per day: Randstad Education Leeds: Job Purpose To work closely with the he...
£32000 - £42000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our client is curr...