Football Diary: Fans left in lurch by Turks

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THE Istanbul Six may have been released, but Manchester United fans' campaign for compensation continues following the 36 hours of round-ups and deportations during the visit to Galatasaray. At Old Trafford cricket ground today, representatives of United, the FA, the PFA and Greater Manchester Police will discuss the next stage with Tom Pendry, the shadow Minister for Sport, and those supporters ill- treated in Turkey.

The desire for reparation is unwavering; what is less clear is the number of people who failed to make the European Cup tie because they were either in custody or simply refused entry to the Ali Sami Yen stadium despite possessing tickets. Johnny Flacks, of the Football Supporters' Association, reckons it could be up to 250 people; at a conservative estimate of pounds 300 per wasted trip this would total pounds 75,000. But who is liable? United would earn incalculable goodwill for refunding the cost of tickets but it is hard to imagine Galatasaray agreeing to any compensation. All are welcome to today's meeting in the Trafford Suite, kick-off at noon.

ATTENDING a match at the Maracana recently, Ken Bates was directed to an exclusive vantage point. It was help-yourself on the seating front in this area so the Chelsea chairman helped himself . . . to the seat normally occupied by the President of Brazil.

LIVERPOOL'S invincibility is a thing of the past but the humour remains undiminished. Climbing into a lift at Anfield on Sunday, Ray Ricketts, from Leeds, overheard the following conversation between a merry supporter and the lift steward. Steward: 'Where's you goin'?' Fan: 'Goodison Park.' Steward: 'You're going down then.'

THE Vetch Field, Swansea, is an upstanding place, but lurking 100 yards away is a seedy 'Private' shop with what the locals consider an appropriate item in the window display: an Arsenal T-shirt.

ENGLAND are the eighth-best team in the world, according to Fifa's latest rankings. The San Marino success helped Graham Taylor's men rise two places in a table headed by Italy, then the Netherlands, Germany and Brazil. Of the top 14, only England and Denmark (sixth) will miss the World Cup. The Republic lie 13th, Scotland 25th, Wales 28th and Northern Ireland 42nd.

WEST HAM enter Wimbledon's away dressing-room this afternoon. Armed with felt-tips?

JOE KINNEAR'S post-match briefings belie the Dons' image as a black hole for entertainment. Why, he asked the media, has he not been linked with the England vacancy? 'Every one in the League has turned it down and I still haven't got a mention,' he blasted.

DURING the game with Parma, Sebastiano Rossi, Milan's keeper, slumped theatrically after being hit on the shoulder by a missile thrown from the crowd: a loo roll.

SO farewell, then, Christian Daum. Who? You must remember. Leeds fans will. Daum, who has announced he is leaving Stuttgart, was the bungling Bundesliga manager who could not add up properly, a costly mistake that inspired the joke: who possesses more foreign reserves: Stuttgart or the Bundesbank?

SCANDINAVIANS have been flocking to British clubs in increasing numbers, but none can have expected to play in a top-of-the-table derby within minutes of arriving. Peter Karlsson, a scribbler with Sweden's biggest-selling tabloid, was writing a story on Britain's smallest league - the two-club Isles of Scilly affair. St Mary's were a man short so Karlsson swapped notepads for shinpads and created two goals in a 5-3 win.

FA CUP day again, so the bottle of Aberlour Malt for freak fact goes to Paul Hanson, of Rochdale, for this knockout stat:

'In 1960, Tottenham played Crewe in a replay at White Hart Lane. Spurs won 13-2. By a quirk of fate, the train which took the Crewe party home, left platform 13 at London Euston and arrived at platform 2 at Crewe.'

More malt next week. All freak facts to Football Diary, The Independent, 40 City Road, London EC1Y 2DB.

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