Football: Lama set to become a Hammer

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Bernard Lama, the French international goalkeeper, is due to arrive at West Ham today after agreeing to join on loan from Paris St Germain. The Hammers manager, Harry Redknapp, moved quickly to bring in a new keeper after losing Ludek Miklosko for eight weeks on Saturday with a knee injury.

"He wants to play top-level first-team football to maintain his position as France's first-choice keeper," Redknapp said. "He has rejected a new contract at PSG so they have refused to play him."

Another French international, striker Mickael Madar, is set to join Everton in the next 24 hours. Manager Howard Kendall said yesterday that negotiations for a free transfer are at an advanced stage, and the Deportivo La Coruna player is waiting for clearance from his Spanish club before flying to Merseyside.

The Parisian, who broke his leg after being named in the French squad for Euro '96, is a tall, powerful striker who began his career with Sochaux and later played for Cannes and Monaco, where he won his first cap, against Romania in 1995.

The fact that he is available on a free transfer appeals to Everton, where chairman Peter Johnson has made it clear there is no money for new players.

Middlesbrough have given permission for their Brazilian international, Emerson, to go home for Christmas and are confident he will be back after completing a two-match suspension.

The club's chief executive, Keith Lamb, yesterday dismissed a report that Emerson would stay away until Middlesbrough allowed him to sign for Tenerife, saying that the Spanish side had not made an official bid.

Leicester City are trying to sign Dundee United's centre-half, Stephen Pressley, in a deal worth around pounds 1m.