Football: Lee acts to fund City's revival

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The Independent Online
FRANCIS LEE, who is more aware than most that footballers can go down as well as up, began the process of rebuilding Manchester City yesterday by announcing the club will apply to be listed on the Stock Exchange.

Lee, who became chairman in the early hours of Saturday after his consortium purchased nearly 30 per cent of the shares, revealed after his first board meeting at Maine Road yesterday morning that the club will follow their neighbours, United, and the London clubs, Millwall and Tottenham Hotspur, into the City.

The listing will probably take place next year, although how much will be raised is unclear. Initial reports suggested pounds 4m, but Colin Barlow, Lee's newly appointed chief executive, said last night: 'I think it would be considerably more than that.'

Barlow and another of Lee's partners, John Dunkerley, also made their debuts in the Maine Road boardroom yesterday, but the anticipated ousting of the vice-chairman, Freddie Pye, and the long-serving Chris Muir failed to materialise. 'It was a positive meeting,' Barlow said, 'very, if I may say the word, united. We decided to continue as we are at least until the end of the season.'

Everton, whose board is anything but settled, are hoping to sign the Swedish international, Jan Eriksson, on loan to shore up their defence. Eriksson, 26, who is in dispute with his German club, Kaiserslautern, was at Goodison on Saturday to watch Everton beat Chelsea, and is considering a move with a view to making a possible pounds 1m transfer at the end of the season. He will give Everton his answer by the weekend.

' Heart of Midlothian have fined and suspended their former Norwich striker, Justin Fashanu, after he missed training. 'Fashanu should have been training with Hearts in Edinburgh, not in London,' the club chairman, Wallace Mercer, said. 'He took two days in London without the club's permission and that is unacceptable.'

The Irish Football Association are expected to reveal the successor to Billy Bingham as manager of Northern Ireland later this week, after interviews with Jimmy and Chris Nicholl, Bryan Hamilton and Gerry Armstrong in Belfast yesterday. Other former international players may become late contenders for the vacancy.

Internazionale, the Italian Serie A club, yesterday dismissed their coach, Osvaldo Bagnoli. His replacement is to be the youth-team coach, Giampiero Marini, a member of Italy's 1982 World Cup-winning team.

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