Football: Hammers aim to keep Ferdinand

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The Independent Online
WEST HAM are to offer Rio Ferdinand a lucrative new deal as they attempt to keep him at Upton Park.

The England centre-back has been linked with a pounds 12m move to Real Madrid, but the club chairman, Terry Brown, said yesterday that the England defender is not for sale.

"We're absolutely determined to keep him at West Ham," Brown said. "We haven't had any contact from Real Madrid but, in any case, we wouldn't be interested in selling him for pounds 12m. We've increased the ticket prices for next season, so what would the supporters think if we now sold arguably our best player?"

Norwich have completed the signing of Paul Dalglish from Newcastle for pounds 300,000. The Scotland Under-21 international spent the final month of the season on loan at Carrow Road. The First Division side have also signed the French winger Cedric Anselin from Bordeaux for pounds 250,000 following a similar loan deal.

Steve Bruce has accepted a three-year contract to become the Huddersfield Town manager. The former Manchester United defender, who quit the Sheffield United managership this week, will be given at least pounds 10m to spend by the First Division club's owner, Barry Rubery. Bruce's appointment will be announced on Monday.

The Everton midfielder Don Hutchison will miss Scotland's vital European Championship double header next month, choosing instead to get married in the West Indies. The Scotland manager, Craig Brown, has recalled the Aston Villa defender Colin Calderwood for the qualifiers in the Faroe Islands on 5 June and the Czech Republic four days later.

Cardiff City's Andy Legg has the chance to add to his four caps after being named in the Wales squad for the European Championship qualifiers against Italy and Denmark next month. Legg, a left wing-back, made the last of his international appearances in a friendly against the Republic of Ireland in February 1997, when with Birmingham.

Jim Magilton has earned a recall to the Northern Ireland squad for the friendly against the Republic of Ireland in Dublin a week today. The midfielder, who has not played for the national team for 12 months, has won back his place after relaunching his career at Ipswich, following his recent move from Sheffield Wednesday.

The Northern Ireland manager Lawrie McMenemy has also brought back the Northampton centre-half Colin Hill, who last played in the Euro 2000 qualifying defeat in Turkey in September, for the game at Lansdowne Road, which is in aid of the Omagh Disaster Fund.

The Republic of Ireland left-back Ian Harte and the 19-year-old goalkeeper Paul Robinson have agreed new four-year contracts with Leeds.

France's World Cup-winning captain Didier Deschamps will leave the Italian club Juventus this summer, he announced yesterday.

Squads, Digest, page 27

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