Football: Gascoigne transfer fee set at only pounds 1m

Click to follow
The Independent Online
MIDDLESBROUGH ARE prepared to sell Paul Gascoigne for pounds 1m if they can find a buyer. The former England midfielder cost them pounds 3.5m when he moved from Rangers two seasons ago but now even Gascoigne's reduced valuation may prove too much to allow him a move to the United States. Leading Major Soccer League sides, including Washington DC United, are interested in Gazza but they are reluctant to pay transfer fees.

Gascoigne has had so many problems on and off the pitch in the last few years that there are few clubs in England that would take him on. The fading genius would probably also prefer a move away from the headlines and, possibly, the memories of his former greatness.

The extrovert midfielder cannot be guaranteed a game at Boro, even in the absence of Paul Ince. He was not in the squad for Tuesday's Worthington Cup defeat at Tranmere Rovers. Boro's manager, Bryan Robson, who is coming under pressure from some sectors of the club's support, might have to cut the price more if he is not to be stuck with continuing to pay Gascoigne's wages of about pounds 32,000 a week.

In transfer fee and wages, Gascoigne has made a pounds 6m dent in the Boro bank account so far, but he has played fewer than 50 games for his new club, scoring just a handful of goals. That cost of pounds 100,000 a game and over pounds 1m a goal shows the gamble involved in Boro's policy of signing older players

Manchester United can continue to play their teenage prospect, Kalum Mooniaruck, in their academy team despite the fact that he lives in Bishop's Stortford. The Premier League have checked into the 15-year-old's background and confirmed that he was attached to United before they imposed the rule that such players should live within 90 minutes' driving distance of their club.

In future the Premier League will stop players signing for distant teams before they are old enough to leave school, but it is expected that the richer clubs will try to get round it by moving their families into the area. United have a second 15-year-old, Kieron Richardson, who travels from Essex to play for them. He, too, was signed before the deadline.

David Beckham has been included in a European All-star Team which was selected by more than 200 journalists from across the continent on the basis of performances during the Euro 2000 qualifying campaign.

The Manchester United midfielder, who is in the running for the European Footballer of the Year award to be announced next week, received 80 votes for the place in right midfield. Marcel Desailly, the Chelsea defender, with 89 votes, and the former Manchester United goalkeeper, Peter Schmeichel, with 72, were also voted into the team, with Italy's Paolo Maldini topping the poll 117 votes.

EUROPEAN ALL-STAR TEAM: Peter Schmeichel (Denmark); Lilian Thuram (France), Paolo Maldini (Italy), Marcel Desailly (France), Sinisa Mihajlovic (Yugoslavia), David Beckham (England), Rui Costa (Portugal), Zinedine Zidane (France), Pavel Nedved (Czech Rebublic), Raul (Spain), Oliver Bierhoff (Germany).

Comments