Football: Newcastle close to signing Fox for pounds 2.25m: Magpies swoop for Canary winger while Yorath's 'sadness and humiliation' at Welsh departure turns to desire for compensation

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The Independent Online
RUEL FOX last night discussed a pounds 2.25m transfer to Newcastle United as the break-up of the Norwich City side predicted in the wake of Mike Walker's departure to Everton began to emerge.

The Newcastle manager, Kevin Keegan, has been trailing Fox for several weeks and Norwich's exit from the FA Cup on Sunday was the cue for him to move in. After the clubs agreed the fee, the winger said: 'It's an exciting prospect and I want to sign for Newcastle United but I still have to discuss personal terms.' Fox was met by Keegan's assistant, Terry McDermott, and the club's chief executive, Freddie Fletcher, at Newcastle airport.

Terry Yorath is to sue the Football Association of Wales for unfair dismissal after losing his job as national team manager to John Toshack. In his first public statement since being discarded Yorath yesterday spoke of his 'sadness and humiliation' though, surprisingly, he went on to declare his willingness to join the committee of men responsible for his exit.

Toshack, the manager of Real Sociedad who has taken over on a part-time basis in partnership with the former Wales manager Mike Smith, is in Cardiff this morning for his first press conference.

Yorath's contract expired on 31 December last year, six weeks after Wales narrowly failed to qualify for the World Cup finals. Following preliminary discussions, the FAW announced it could not meet Yorath's demand for a pounds 15,000 increase on his pounds 45,000 salary even though he had always indicated the terms were negotiable.

On Christmas Eve he was told his contract was not to be renewed but he was invited to reapply for his old job. 'Whether calculated or not,' Yorath said, 'this was a humiliation beyond reason.'

Now he is to pursue legal action, his solicitor, Peter Levine, explaining that irrespective of his contract coming to a close he retained statutory rights as an employee.

'Terry's employment was terminated unfairly and he is entitled to seek redundancy and compensation,'

Levine said. 'I would expect a well- advised FAW to be making an offer soon and would hope they can act sensibly in this and conduct themselves differently to the way they have conducted themselves so far.'

As Wales pursued first Terry Venables and then Bobby Robson to take over, Yorath said that the FAW's chief executive, Alun Evans, was blaming the president, Elfed Ellis, for the refusal to renew his contract. Ellis died last month after a suspected heart attack yet it still did not produce a reprieve for the popular 43-year-old.

Another factor in Yorath's claim is that while waiting for Wales he was forced to turn down other job offers. 'During this period I was regularly speaking to two people on the sub-committee making the appointment and they said I was still in the running. They knew I wanted to do the job and they just played with my emotions.'

The first he knew he was finished was when Toshack telephoned last week to say he had been appointed. 'The FAW has done things the wrong way again and more than anything I would like to stand for election and help run Welsh football. I now intend to get on with my life and know I can look the FAW in the eye and say I have earned my wages, done my job and that my removal was neither linked to events on the pitch nor was wanted by the majority of the Welsh footballing public.'

Tottenham last night completed the pounds 850,000 transfer of Newcastle's central defender Kevin Scott.

Paul Gascoigne, suspended for Lazio's game with Internazionale next Sunday, has returned to England for a brief holiday with his club insisting he will be with them next season.

Last night's football, page 35

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