Football: Platt hires Italians as Goldbaek balks

DAVID PLATT, the Nottingham Forest player-manager, has failed to sign Chelsea's Danish winger, Bjarne Goldbaek, but will complete the signings of the Italians Gianluca Petrachi and Salvetore Metrecano within the next 24 hours.

Platt has agreed a pounds 2.4m deal with Perugia for the pair and has struck deals with the players over personal terms. "We're very lucky to have got two players of such experience who are prepared to drop down from Serie A," said Platt. "That underlines our ambition."

The central defender Metrecano, aged 29, and the 30-year-old midfielder Petrachi will be joined at the City Ground by Sampdoria's veteran defender Moreno Mannini, 36, who is also about to join Forest on a free transfer.

Platt had agreed a pounds 1.5m fee with Chelsea for 31-year-old Goldbaek but the player turned the move down. It was reported Goldbaek had demanded too much money but Platt insisted that "family reasons were the deciding factor and we're happy to respect that".

Meanwhile, Forest's chief executive, Phil Soar, will be the next departure from the First Division club after Irving Scholar and Julian Markham also resigned as directors recently.

The millionaire businessman Nigel Doughty, who last week bought a controlling interest in the club, said : "Phil has already signalled he wants to leave as chief executive, and we hope to make an appointment shortly."

Mark Arthur, the chief executive of Nottinghamshire County Cricket Club, is the favourite to replace Soar.

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