Football: pounds 3m Milito target for Tottenham

IF THERE is one club where they appreciate an Argentinian, it is Tottenham. George Graham was yesterday trying to bring Gabriel Milito to White Hart Lane, where the centre-half's compatriots Osvaldo Ardiles and Ricki Villa once flourished in a more glorious era for the north London club.

The Spurs manager has had talks with the Under-21 international's agent and his club, Independiente. Milito is expected to fly into London for talks in the next 10 days and is valued at pounds 3m.

Terry Venables, a former Spurs manager, is the man Wales want to be their new coach. Key members of the Football Association of Wales' full council will push for an approach to be made to the former England coach at a meeting in Cardiff on Thursday.

The Chester manager, Kevin Ratcliffe, is the bookies' favourite for the Wales job, and there is support for allowing Neville Southall and Mark Hughes to continue in charge for the final two Euro 2000 qualifiers early next season.

Newly-promoted Watford are preparing to make an audacious offer to sign the Bulgarian Hristo Stoichkov. The club's manager, Graham Taylor, believes the 33-year-old would be an ideal signing.

However, Stoichkov, who is under contract to the J-League club Kashiwa Reysol until June 2000, had been linked with taking over the post of national coach from Dimitar Dimitrov.

The Charlton manager, Alan Curbishley, has pledged his support to the club relegated to the Nationwide First Division by signing a new four- year contract at The Valley.

Southampton have entered the bidding to sign David Wetherall after the Leeds defender's proposed pounds 2m move to Huddersfield fell through. The Saints, whose Dutch centre-back Ken Monkou has rejected a new contract, have told Leeds' chairman, Peter Ridsdale, they are prepared to meet or better Huddersfield's offer.

Everton have insisted there is no prospect of them selling their French midfielder, Olivier Dacourt, to Liverpool. Michael Dunford, the Goodison Park club's secretary, said: "We have had no approach from Liverpool for Dacourt, and nor would any be welcomed."

The former Celtic and Scotland midfielder Paul McStay has declared his intention to return to the game in a coaching capacity. McStay, whose playing career was cut short by an ankle injury two years ago, has enlisted for an SFA coaching course in Largs next month.

A total of 60 players must examine their future options this summer after the Scottish Premier League unveiled the full list of those freed by their clubs. Celtic and Dundee led the way by each releasing 10 players, with Kilmarnock letting nine go and only St Johnstone - who secured third place and entry to the Uefa Cup - opting to retain all of their squad.

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