Football: Petrescu prepares for English adventure

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The Independent Online
DAN PETRESCU, the Romanian World Cup defender, yesterday sealed his pounds 1.3m move to Sheffield Wednesday and then headed home, where his decision to come to these shores will be admired.

'This is a test for me,' the 26-year-old said. 'I have seen English football on television and I like it. In Romania, people say it is difficult to play in England but I am looking forward to it.'

After signing a four-year contract, he set off for Bucharest for a week or so to await his work permit and he expects to train there with one of his previous clubs, Steaua.

Wednesday's manager, Trevor Francis, was pleased to have fought off competition from Torino for the Genoa and former Foggia player, who normally operates on the right. He will increase Francis's defensive options, although he is not a direct replacement for the Northern Ireland international, Nigel Worthington, now with Leeds United, as he plays on the left.

Wednesday's lost 3-2 in a friendly match against Hibernian at Easter Road yestreday, Darren Jackson scoring twice for the Scots. At least another Francis close-season signing, the former Port Vale midfielder Ian Taylor, scored one of the Hillsborough club's goals.

Having secured Worthington, Leeds have signed another defender. Their manager, Howard Wilkinson, has dipped into the reservoir of South African talent for a second time to sign Lucas Radebe, a pounds 250,000 centre-back from Kaizer Chiefs who impressed during two trial games. He, too, is dependent on receiving a work permit. Wilkinson previously signed the striker, Philomen Masinga, at the same cost from Mamelodi Sundowns.

Celtic fans are becoming used to homecomings. The forward, Andy Walker, marked his return with both goals in the draw against Brazil's Flamengo last week, Pat Bonner is back as the No 2 goalkeeper, and tonight they might see Kenny Dalglish in action for Blackburn against his former club at Hampden Park. 'King Kenny', who left Celtic for Liverpool in 1977, had to play against Aberdeen on Saturday in the absence of Sutton, Shearer, Newell, Warhurst and Gallacher.

A Cardiff player could become the first Welsh professional footballer to be banned for failing a drugs test. The Football Association of Wales have launched an inquiry after the unnamed player gave a positive sample after the Welsh Cup final at Cardiff Arms Park in May.

Terry Hibbitt obituary, page 12

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