Football: Everton target Stuart

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The Independent Online
GRAHAM STUART, the Chelsea forward, has agreed personal terms with Everton but his transfer is by no means certain, with the Premiership clubs some way apart on his valuation, writes Trevor Haylett. While Glenn Hoddle has asked pounds 1.5m for the former England Under-21 international, who is out of contract, Everton are offering just half that.

'If we are not able to agree a fee, there are two possibilities,' Howard Kendall, the Everton manager, said. 'We could go to a tribunal decision and sign the player right now or we could go for a conditional tribunal, which means we can't play the lad but we can pull out if we believe the fee is too high.'

Kendall has been trying to sign a tall striker, with Mark Hateley, Niall Quinn and Mark Bright among those he covets. Once again he may have to make do with another of the tiny brigade - Stuart is 5ft 8in.

West Ham are in the hunt for a striker, but the signs are that Liverpool's Ronny Rosenthal will need some persuading to come south. 'Although I'd like to stay in England I have to think carefully about where I go,' he said. 'I don't want to go anywhere in just any situation.'

Sheffield Wednesday were close to completing two deals yesterday which will increase the possibility that they will beat Arsenal to Andy Sinton's signature. John Harkes is expected to join Derby despite late interest from Manchester City, while Peter Shirtliff is set to sign for Wolves.

Norwich are negotiating a pounds 150,000 fee with Sittingbourne, the Beazer Homes League side, for the defender Neil Emblem, who is ambitiously dubbed 'the new Alan Hansen'. His manager, John Ryan, the former Norwich player, has predicted an international future for Emblem.

Southampton's England Under-21 defender, Jason Dodd, will be out for at least three months after breaking his right ankle in training. David Bardsley, the Queen's Park Rangers and England full-back, entered hospital yesterday for an operation on his injured ankle. Wolves have increased their bid for Bardsley's team-mate, Darren Peacock, to pounds 1.75m.