Football: Madar set for Everton

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The Independent Online
The French international Mickael Madar will arrive in Liverpool today to continue talks with Everton, who have been given permission by his Spanish club, Deportivo La Coruna, to negotiate with the 29-year-old former Monaco striker.

Everton have had confirmation that they can sign the tall, powerful French international on a free transfer. Madar has just got back into the Spanish club's first team after recovering from a broken leg, which followed his inclusion in the French squad for the 1996 European Championship.

Dave Hill, the chairman of Soccer Australia, the country's football governing body, admitted yesterday that he may struggle to keep Terry Venables as national coach in the face of competition from the likes of South Africa.

The former England coach has been put on an eight-strong shortlist to replace Clive Barker, who resigned on Saturday despite having steered the South Africans to the World Cup finals.

Venables failed to guide Australia through to France 98 but is still viewed as a desirable property in international management. Hill said: "The problem is - and always has been - we cannot afford to pay Venables what he is demonstrably worth."

Barnsley are thought to be ready to stand by Dean Jones after he was banned for three months by the Football Association yesterday after testing positive for amphetamines at Barnsley's training ground in October. The 20-year-old defender pleaded guilty to the offence at a hearing in London, claiming he took the substance at a night-club on 26 October to keep him awake, not to enhance his performance.