Football: Brick attack on Leeds coach

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The Independent Online
ONE OF football's longest running feuds erupted again yesterday when the Leeds team bus was attacked by Birmingham City supporters before yesterday's friendly at St Andrew's.

Earlier, the new Minister of Sport, Kate Hoey, had issued a warning that hooliganism had not gone away, and to prove her point fans threw bricks when the bus was less than 200 yards from the ground before the pre-season friendly, which Leeds won 1-0. The bus windscreen was smashed, but no one was hurt.

Bitter rivalry between the clubs' fans stems back to the many violent clashes of the 1970s and 1980s. The trouble reached its peak in the last game of the 1984-85 season when a Birmingham fan died after a brick wall collapsed during a riot by Leeds supporters.

Any anger the Leeds fans felt this time, however, was directed towards their own striker, Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink, who has responded to the club's offer of a pounds 22,000-a-week contract by requesting a transfer. Atletico Madrid are prepared to meet the 27-year-old's demands, and fans unfurled a banner which read: "Jimmy: Greedy, Selfish Judas".

Afterwards, the Leeds manager, David O'Leary, dismissed any possibility of the club reaching a compromise with Hasselbaink. He is demanding pounds 40,000 per week, and O'Leary said: "What Jimmy is looking for is more than anybody in this country is being paid. It is a vast amount of money. But he has two years left on his current deal and we will not be dictated to. We will decide what we want to do. I don't know why people think we are in a rush to get this resolved because we are in the driving seat. At the end of the day we have the player, we have his contract and we have his registration. But there is no scope for negotiation. We have gone to the very limit of what we can offer."

The only goal of yesterday's game came from Hasselbaink's teenage strike partner, Alan Smith, in the 28th minute.

The Premiership newcomers Bradford City have confirmed the signing of the former Charlton and Barnsley midfielder Neil Redfearn on a two-year contract. The 34-year-old has returned to his native West Yorkshire in a pounds 250,000 deal and is expected to provide cover for City's injured captain, Stuart McCall. The Bradford-born Redfearn played 335 games for Barnsley, scoring 84 goals before joining Charlton to continue his career in the Premiership. It looks like his new team need all the help they can get. Yesterday they lost 3-1 at home - to Redfearn's old mates at Barnsley.

The Tottenham manager, George Graham, and his Wolves counterpart, Colin Lee, both insisted that Robbie Keane's proposed move to White Hart Lane has gone off the boil after the two teams drew 1-1. Graham said: "I have not spoken about Keane. David Pleat [Spurs' director of football] enquired but it has not gone any further."

And Lee confirmed: "There has been no indication of a deal."