Clubs to clean up act

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The Independent Online


Premier League clubs have agreed to a standards clampdown aimed at cleaning up the image of the game after its season of sleaze.

Under the revisions, which will start next season, it was decided, at the League's annual meeting in Harrogate yesterday, that new commissions would be set up with the power to carry out investigations into financial arrangements between clubs and players.

Clubs found guilty of wrongdoing could be subject to points deductions or expulsion, while there will also be new codes of conduct dealing with all aspects of discipline and behaviour.

The Association's case against the former Arsenal manager, George Graham, who has been charged with misconduct, will begin on 10 July .

Jurgen Klinsmann has reacted angrily to Tottenham's complaint to Fifa over the way the player left in the middle of a two-year contract to join Bayern Munich. Spurs want Klinsmann suspended until the matter is resolved. "I don't understand Tottenham chairman Alan Sugar's actions," Klinsmann said.

Spurs are reported to be interested in signing the Dutch international, Aron Winter, from the Italian club, Lazio. Reports in yesterday's Gazzetta dello Sport linked the midfielder with a move to White Hart Lane.

Lazio's owner, Sergio Cragnotti, has decided to sell his stake in the club in protest against the fans who besieged the club's administrative headquarters to protest against the planned sale of Giuseppe Signori to Parma for pounds 9m - a deal which will not now go ahead. "I am selling, I am resigning from all positions, I am very saddened and I don't intend to have anything to do with sport," he was quoted as saying by the Italian news agency Ansa.

Aston Villa have joined Liverpool and Everton in the pounds 8.5m chase for the Nottingham Forest striker, Stan Collymore. They have not made a formal bid but have told Forest that they will match any offer for Collymore

Alan Smith, recently sacked by Crystal Palace, has declared his interest in the managerial vacancy at Bolton Wanderers.

The Association has confirmed that they have spread their net abroad to find a new technical director, with the former France manager, Gerard Houllier, the favourite.

More football, page 25