Football: Marseilles make move for Desailly

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The Independent Online
MARSEILLES WANT to sign Marcel Desailly from Chelsea this summer. The wealthy French club, who are on course to win their domestic championship and a place in the Champions' League, are keen to bring the defender home in a move which would cost around pounds 5m.

Desailly could be interested in leaving Stamford Bridge. Although he has been a great success at Chelsea, he has not put down roots in English football since his move from Milan in the same way that some of his fellow countrymen have.

Desailly, a World Cup winner with France last summer, has already played at the top level in his home country and in Italy and some of his comments have suggested he is only passing through at Chelsea. Marseilles, meanwhile, are trying to strengthen their squad as they attempt to re-establish themselves among Europe's elite . They also want to sign the German defender, Christian Ziege, from Milan.

Desailly will give an answer after the end of the season but he may wish to see what other options are available.

Roy Hodgson, the former Blackburn manager, says he would be tempted by an offer to coach the Australian national team. The 51-year-old met theSoccer Australia chairman, Basil Scarsella, while in Australia to address a sports seminar two months ago, though he said he had not been offered the job.

Hodgson, who has taken a temporary post as director of coaching at Internazionale, said: "The job has appeal, there's no doubt. I can see a lot of positive things Australia have going for them. The country has a bright future football-wise. They have a lot of good players overseas - not just in England, but also in other parts of Europe, and Japan and other countries."

David Elleray has mentioned an off-the-field incident which took place after Ian Wright was dismissed in Saturday's match between West Ham and Leeds in his match report to the FA. There were reports of an incident in the referee's room after Rob Harris showed Wright the red card.

Elleray confirmed: "I have submitted a disciplinary report to the FA in my capacity as the fourth official at the match. I have sent in a report on an incident after Mr Wright was sent from the field of play. As a fourth official, I am only empowered to report on things not seen by the referee on or off the field of play, so my report solely deals with incidents not in the referee's match report."

Carlton Palmer, the Nottingham Forest midfielder, has emerged as a contender for the managerial vacancy at Barnsley. The Yorkshire club will speak to three other candidates this week. Barnsley have all but given up hope of talking Mick McCarthy and his assistant, Ian Evans, into joining them because of the cost of compensation to the Republic of Ireland.

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