Football: Arsenal full-back to miss last game

NIGEL WINTERBURN will miss the final game of Arsenal's title defence at home against Aston Villa on Sunday after undergoing surgery on his broken nose yesterday.

The full-back was left bloodied and bruised at Leeds on Tuesday after a collision. Fears that he may have suffered a fractured cheekbone proved unfounded.

Manchester United's Roy Keane, who missed last night's draw at Blackburn, is recovering well from his ankle injury and has a good chance of playing against Tottenham on Sunday. Jaap Stam, who was taken off as a precaution at half-time against Rovers after he felt his Achilles, should be fit.

Dave Bassett has emerged as a candidate to fill the vacant managerial position at Huddersfield Town. Steve Bruce, the manager of Sheffield United, is regarded as the favourite, but sources close to the First Division club suggested Bassett was the preferred replacement of the chairman, Barry Rubery, for Peter Jackson, who was sacked this week.

Under Jackson, Huddersfield finished 10th, but Bradford City's promotion to the Premiership has changed expectations. While Huddersfield have not played in the top flight since 1972, the feeling is that if Bradford, and recently, Barnsley, can reach the Premiership, so should the Terriers.

Bassett, the former Wimbledon, Watford, Sheffield United, Crystal Palace and Nottingham Forest manager, is regarded as having the necessary experience and contacts. He is keen to get back into the game and Huddersfield, being close to his family's Sheffield base, is a tempting prospect. Last night, though, Bassett said: "No one has been in touch with me."

Denis Smith's future as West Bromwich Albion's manager is in doubt after remarks by the Baggies' chairman, Tony Hale. Asked whether Smith would be in charge next season, Hale said: "It's a difficult one. I can't speak for my colleagues but there's a lot to discuss."

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