Everton not good enough for Hammam

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The players Everton covet to halt a slide down the Premiership came into sharper focus yesterday when the club were linked with Manchester City's Terry Phelan and Wimbledon's Dean Holdsworth, writes Guy Hodgson.

Indeed, Phelan could have been at Goodison by now if Joe Royle's priorities not been altered by the prison sentence handed to Duncan Ferguson last week. Royle, who is understood to have offered midfielder John Ebbrell as a straight swap for the Republic of Ireland full-back, has had to turn his attention further forward and Wimbledon's reaction yesterday suggested that his target was Holdsworth.

"We haven't turned Dean into one of the finest strikers in the country just to get the likes of Everton out of trouble," Sam Hammam, the club's owner, said. "If and when we choose to sell Dean it will only be for a new England transfer record and to a club of the calibre of Manchester United or a top club in Europe."

Teddy Sheringham, the Tottenham striker, has agreed a new contract which will keep him at White Hart Lane for the bext four seasons.