Football: Sporting Digest

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The Independent Online
Aberdeen's attempts to secure the Coventry City midfielder Michael O'Neill on a three-month loan deal have collapsed after a row over the anticipated transfer fee. Negotiations broke down when Coventry reportedly demanded a guaranteed fee in the region of pounds 200,000 should the move become permanent.

The Birmingham City manager, Trevor Francis, was poised to sign Simon Charlton for pounds 250,000 yesterday. If the Southampton left-back moves to St Andrew's, it will take to 21 the number of purchases Francis has made in 20 months in charge.

Gary Germaine, West Bromwich Albion's Scotland Under-21 international goalkeeper, has joined Shrewsbury Town on loan with a view to making a permanent move to Gay Meadow.

The Ipswich Town forward Neil Gregory has signed for Colchester United on a month's loan. He joins his elder brother David, a regular in the Third Division side's defence, at Layer Road,

Wolves' Paul Simpson has been banned for three games after the first sending-off of his career against Reading last month.

The Premiership official David Elleray, from Harrow, will referee both legs of the Uefa Super Cup final between the European champions, Borussia Dortmund, and the Cup-Winners' Cup holders, Barcelona, this month. The first leg is at Nou Camp on 8 January, the return is in Germany three days later.