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Football: Palace to offer Zohar as they deal for Dublin

Crystal Palace are ready to offer the Israeli midfield player Itzhak Zohar to Coventry City as part of a swap deal that would bring Dion Dublin to Selhurst Park.

Steve Coppell, the Palace manager, has been unable to give Zohar a regular game since signing him from the Belgian side Royal Antwerp for pounds 1m. Now Palace are ready to offer Zohar plus pounds 3m for Dublin. Gordon Strachan, the the Coventry manager, may be prepared to sell Dublin after signing the Romanian striker Voriel Moldovan for pounds 3.25m.

The Everton manager Howard Kendall is hoping to finalise terms and sign Mickael Madar to a contract by midday today, so that the French striker can be in his team for the game with Bolton on Sunday. Madar is expected to agree to a contract worth around pounds 14,000 a week at Goodison, which means he will take a cut from his current employers, the Spanish club Deportivo La Coruna. Madar went back to Spain on Christmas Eve to sort out a final payment from Deportivo.

The Everton goalkeeper Neville Southall will play his first game for Southend United today, having agreed to join the Second Division club on a month's loan. The 39-year-old Welsh international takes over from Simon Royce at Brentford. Royce is ruled out by a one-match suspension after being sent off at Fulham in an FA Cup tie earlier this month.

Alvin Martin, the Southend manager, is delighted with the deal, and said: "I felt it was the right time to bring somebody of Neville's stature to the club. He's got a massive presence. It will be great for the supporters to see him here and hopefully he'll lift the whole place."

The Middlesbrough striker Chris Freestone has joined Second Division Northampton for pounds 75,000. The 26-year-old has spent three weeks on loan with the Cobblers. The Charlton striker Steve Jones has returned to his former club Bournemouth.

The Southampton manager David Jones has failed in a bid to sign the German midfield player Ralf Weber from Eintracht Frankfurt. The Saints had agreed a pounds 1m deal with Eintracht but Weber decided not to travel to the Dell for talks. Jones will make a decision next week on whether to sign the Danish international full-back Jens Risager, who is on trial from Brondby.

Police have cast doubt on reports suggesting that a Far East betting syndicate interfered with Monday night's abandoned game at Selhurst Park. It had been alleged that Asian businessmen were behind the floodlight failure during the Premier League game between Wimbledon and Arsenal.

Nottingham Forest and 16 of their former players have started court action against Anderlecht over the 1984 Uefa Cup bribery scandal. "The writ has been served," Forest's Belgian lawyer Filip Goemans said on Christmas Eve. "We had set today as the deadline but since we did not get a positive reaction, I was ordered by my clients to issue a summons."

The Belgian club's former chairman Constant Vanden Stock admitted in September having paid around pounds 16,000 as a "loan" to the Spanish referee in the second leg of the 1984 Uefa Cup semi-final which they won 3-0. Forest, who had won the first leg 2-0, had a goal controversially disallowed in the return leg.