Football: Parry promises TV pay-out

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The Independent Online
THE Premier League clubs can start licking their lips in earnest. Their chief executive, Rick Parry, promised yesterday that the 22 beneficiaries of the pounds 304m television deal with BSkyB and the BBC will receive a handsome down payment before the season starts.

According to Parry, the five-year contract 'will be signed in the next day or two and the clubs will receive their money immediately afterwards,' the sum in question being pounds 500,000 apiece. Over the course of the season the total share-out per club will be between pounds 750,000 and pounds 800,000 with more cash to follow next May depending on final position and frequency of television appearances.

Meanwhile, moves are afoot among Premier League chairmen to arrange a formal vote on the pounds 6m, three-year sponsorship offered by Bass. Should agreement be reached, the elite league will be known as the Football Association Carling Premier League.

The clubs originally rejected the package a fortnight ago, instructing negotiators to find an alternative sponsor that did not conflict with existing brewery deals.

Chelsea are hoping to be reunited with their former midfielder, Nigel Spackman. Rangers are expected to receive a bid of pounds 550,000 within the next few days.

Another projected Stamford Bridge acquisition, the Swedish international Johnny Ekstrom, managed only one shot on goal during an undistinguished start to his trial period in Saturday's 2-1 loss at Bristol City. The IFK Gothenburg striker put this down to not having trained for the past three weeks.

Dion Dublin, signed for pounds 1m from Cambridge in midweek, laid on a goal for Brian McClair after only four minutes as Manchester United beat a Republic of Ireland XI 2-0 at Lansdowne Road, Dublin, yesterday. Mark Hughes scored United's other goal with a second-half header.

Birmingham City will be without midfielder Ian Rodgerson for the first two months of the season following a groin operation.

Jurgen Klinsmann enjoyed a profitable debut for Monaco, scoring twice in a 4-0 win over Toulon. Another German forward, Rudi Voller, converted a late penalty to help Marseille open the defence of their French title by beating Toulouse 2-1.

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