Football: Palace pay pounds 1.7m for Padovano

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The Italian striker Michele Padovano yesterday signed for Crystal Palace for pounds 1.71m - after being persuaded to join by his former Juventus team-mate, Attilio Lombardo.

The Palace chairman, Ron Noades, said the club had recruited the 31-year- old as a "short-term" investment to ensure their continued place in the Premiership, while they waited to find and develop a younger striker for the future.

He was part of the Juventus side which won the Italian championship in 1994-95 and the European Cup the following season, scoring more than 50 goals for the Serie A giants.

Arsenal's French international midfielder Patrick Vieira will be out for up to six weeks with damage to an internal lateral knee ligament.

Fifa, football's world governing body, said yesterday the German football federation (DFB) cannot order a replay of a Bundesliga match between 1860 Munich and Karlsruhe because of a refereeing error. The Fifa committee for legal matters re-affirmed that all decisions taken by the referee affecting play in the course of a game are final and cannot be overturned.

The DFB had already turned down an appeal by Karlsruhe against its decision in August to order the replay after the two teams drew 2-2 in the Bundesliga on 5 August.

1860 Munich had complained that Karlsruhe's 87th minute equaliser, from the South African-born Sean Dundee, was scored after the referee Michael Malbranc had blown for a foul.

A date has been set for the start of a court case to investigate whether the Premier League's lucrative TV deal with BSkyB and the BBC should be scrapped. The hearings will not be held in the Restrictive Practices Court until January 1999.

The Ukrainian international player Sergei Nagornyak has tested positive for traces of the masking agent, Bromantan, after his country's World Cup play-off against Croatia. Nagornyak has been suspended from all football activities. The ban will stay in place while his case is submitted to the Organising Committee of the World Cup.