Football: FA to monitor Millwall after crowd trouble

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The Independent Online
MILLWALL HAVE been found guilty of failing to control spectators following pitch invasions during their match against Manchester City earlier this season. However, the Second Division side have escaped punishment after the incidents during the League match at the New Den on 29 September. The south Londoners have been warned about their future conduct and the Football Association will continue to monitor the situation with the club.

After a hearing lasting more than six hours, an FA crowd control commission said it was impressed by Millwall's determination to prevent any further problems. The match referee, Matt Messias, gave evidence to the commission about the pitch invasions and incidents of coin throwing during the second half of the 1-1 draw.

Police Superintendent Trevor Brydges said there had been four invasions during the game and police had to stop fans reaching players and officials after Manchester City scored a late equaliser. Part of the trouble was blamed on hooligans from other London clubs attending the game. The bad- tempered match also featured a mass brawl between the opposing players, sparked after City's Tony Vaughan and Millwall's Paul Shaw were sent off in the 77th minute.

Six other players were booked after the scuffle - three from each side - and a furious City manager, Joe Royle, said at the time: "The home fans were refereeing at times." Royle also claimed some of his players had been spat at and threatened.

Of more immediate concern to Royle is securing the services of Rolf Landrl, the Austrian attacker who turned out for City in a reserve game on Tuesday night and is poised to clinch a move from the Dutch side AZ Alkmaar. The swift right-sided player is seen by Royle as an alternative to Craig Hignett, who joined Barnsley last week. He is available for around pounds 200,000.

The Southampton manager, Dave Jones, is giving a trial to the French defender Kwami Hodouto. The 24-year-old Auxerre centre half has been training with the Saints this week and is expected to play for the reserves before Jones makes a decision on whether to make an offer for him. Hodouto, who played for Cannes before joining Auxerre in 1997, is available for a fee of around pounds 300,000.

Southampton have also made the first move in their scheme for a new 32,000- seater stadium and have submitted plans to the City Council for a pounds 21m ground to be built within three years.

Jean-Michel Ferri has no chance of making his Liverpool debut at Spurs on Saturday. The pounds 1.7m defensive midfielder has been training on his own at the club this week after arriving at Anfield short of match fitness, after being out of action for a month because of a dispute over wages with his previous club, Istanbulspor.

The former Bradford City manager, Chris Kamara, has turned down an offer to manage the Barbados national side. Kamara, who was sacked by Stoke City last season, has been busy with television and radio work but wants to return to domestic management.

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