Football: Fry leaves Barnet for Southend

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The Independent Online
HARDLY had peace broken out at Barnet when the club was thrown into confusion again yesterday, Barry Fry leaving to become Southend manager.

On Wednesday, Fry was sacked by Stan Flashman, who then quit the financially troubled club on health grounds. Fry was promptly reinstated by the incoming chairman, Robert Woolfson, but decided to move on after meeting the new board. 'They are just plastering over the old cracks,' Fry said. He replaces Colin Murphy, who had departed Roots Hall earlier yesterday. Edwin Stein, hitherto No 2 at Underhill, takes over as Barnet manager until further notice.

The Football Association is to investigate Mark Bosnich's transfer from Sydney Croatia to Aston Villa. Representatives of the FA, Premier and Football Leagues and the Professional Footballers' Association met yesterday amid concern that Villa broke Fifa rules by paying an agent when they signed the Australian goalkeeper earlier this season. Notts County's signing of Bob Catlin and Shaun Murphy, also from Australian clubs, is also being scrutinised.

The Arsenal trio who helped England prise maximum points amid all the intimidation in Izmir returned to Highbury in varying moods. Tony Adams was full of life after his adept defensive display, Ian Wright was slightly more subdued, a condition partly explained by the tenderness of his ribs, while Lee Dixon was smiling bravely but sounding doubtful about playing against Spurs in the FA Cup semi-final at Wembley on Sunday.

'I'm struggling,' Dixon said. 'If the game was on Saturday I would have no chance. I'm 40-60 against.' A subsequent X-ray revealed no fracture to the left shin-bone, prompting George Graham, the Arsenal manager, to say: 'Lee is still very sore and must still be doubtful but he's a quick healer and we are optimistic.' If Dixon is ruled out Graham may turn to David O'Leary as Pal Lydersen is recovering from an operation and Martin Keown is cup-tied.

O'Leary, who leaves Arsenal on a free transfer in May, 20 years after arriving as an apprentice, said: 'It would be a fantastic way of saying goodbye to the club and the fans, but I'm not counting on anything yet.'

The buffeting Dixon took from the Turks may give O'Leary his chance. Dixon was floored three times in the opening stages. 'I couldn't understand why they were having a go at me,' the 29-year-old said, 'Maybe I was wearing Gazza's shirt.

'It was the most hostile atmosphere I've played in. The Turkish fans were throwing bricks and bottles - the sort of things that can kill you. There was a girl with her hair on fire from a firework and one England fan got hit badly in the eye. If that had gone on at an England ground we'd have been banned from international competition for 10 years.'

Wright also hobbled off before time after receiving a sly punch but his rib problem is not considered serious.

Scarborough last night parted company with their manager, Ray McHale. Phil Chambers steps up as caretaker manager.

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