Celtic settle row with striker

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Pierre Van Hooijdonk's simmering row with Celtic was close to being resolved yesterday after the Parkhead club held talks with the unsettled striker.

Celtic, infuriated by Van Hooijdonk's claim for an improved pay deal, a demand the Dutchman has denied making, said the manager, Tommy Burns, had spoken to the player, "who accepts he must abide by the rules the rest of the players have to abide by".

The statement added: "Both agree the football side will take care of itself, and the player's contractual situation will be dealt with in due course."

Chris Waddle, the former England international, had his final training session at Falkirk yesterday and was looking for a new club after coming to the end of his month's spell at the Scottish First Division side.

"I am ready for anything, either as a player or on the management and coaching side. Or both." the 35-year-old Waddle said.

Cardiff City could be without a manager for the next two weeks following Phil Neal's move to become Steve Coppell's assistant at Manchester City. The Cardiff chairman, Samesh Kumar, who may seek an injunction to stop Neal joining the Maine Road club, said that it could be "a week or two" before an appointment is made.

Blackburn Rovers have insisted that their young Irish international goalkeeper, Shay Given, is not for sale.

The 20-year-old understudy to Tim Flowers is seeking an improved contract. Rovers' assistant manager, Tony Parkes, said: "The situation regarding Shay is unchanged. The club is still negotiating with the player and there is nothing more to add."

The Wolves midfielder Darren Ferguson has been banned for three games following his sending-off against Bolton Wanderers last week. His club yesterday signed the German midfielder Jens Dowe on loan until the end of the season with a view to a permanent deal.

The Aston Villa midfielder Mark Draper has been banned for one match after being dismissed for two bookable offences during last week's defeat at Newcastle United. He will miss the game at Villa Park with Leeds United on 19 October.

Southampton have been granted a work permit for the Israeli international midfielder Eyal Berkowitz, signed for pounds 1m from Maccabi Haifa.

The Barnet chairman, Tony Kleanthous, said he is to submit plans for a new 10,000-seat multi-sport venue at Mill Hill after talks with the local council.

Kleanthous has rejected ground-sharing schemes at Enfield and Boreham Wood, but said: "We remain on course with our plans for Barnet Copthall.

"However, there are a few local issues still to resolve, particularly keeping the residents happy."