Football: Spurs' pounds 6m offer for Ferdinand accepted

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The Independent Online
Tottenham, under pressure from disgruntled fans for their failure to sign a replacement for Teddy Sheringham, said last night that Newcastle had accepted their offer of pounds 6m for Les Ferdinand and had given them permission to talk to the England forward with a view to agreeing personal terms.

The north London club, who last week signed Ferdinand's Newcastle team- mate David Ginola for pounds 2m, hope to complete a deal with the 30-year-old striker over the weekend.

Revealing his club's progress on the possible transfer, Tottenham's operations manager, Daniel Sugar, said: "No one else has been given permission to talk to the player and all there is for us to do is to agree personal terms and a medical. We are hoping to talk to him over the weekend and hopefully he will be our player by the start of the season."

The Spurs offer matched one made previously by Everton, whose manager, Howard Kendall, was keen to sign the striker, though he admitted early yesterday: "I think he is longing to go back to London."

The additional attraction of Spurs is that their manager, Gerry Francis, was instrumental in developing Ferdinand's career when they were both at Queen's Park Rangers. Ferdinand left Loftus Road to join Newcastle two seasons ago for pounds 6m and last season shared 49 goals with the England captain, Alan Shearer.

Another striker apparently on his way out of St James' Park is Peter Beardsley. Bolton's manager, Colin Todd, said he was confident he would be able to persuade the 36-year-old former England forward to leave his native Newcastle in a pounds 500,000 transfer. Beardsley previously turned down a move to Bolton.

The Internazionale defender Alessandro Pistone flew to Tyneside from Milan yesterday for talks with Newcastle, who are believed to have agreed a fee of pounds 4.5m with Inter. That would leave the player to pass his medical and agree personal terms.

There was some good news for Everton yesterday. Sheffield United have dropped their legal challenge against them and Kendall over the compensation they claimed they were owed for losing their former manager. United were demanding pounds 1m from Everton after Kendall, who had two years to run on his contract, left Bramall Lane earlier this month to take charge at Goodison. Everton offered pounds 250,000. Sheffield United yesterday said an amicable settlement had been reached.

Craig Burley has signed a five-year contract with Celtic, completing his pounds 2.5m move from Chelsea.

Arsenal have been cleared of making an illegal approach to Derby's Dean Sturridge, and the London club yesterday insisted they have no interest in signing the 23-year-old striker, who Derby value at pounds 7m. Derby's manager, Jim Smith, believes a club has approached Sturridge, and rumours had wrongly suggested that club was Arsenal.

The European champions, Borussia Dortmund, say they have received no offer from Liverpool for their international striker Karlheinz Riedle, despite reports claiming Liverpool had offered pounds 1.5m for him.

The Brazilian club Flamengo, who are looking for a replacement for Romario, said yesterday that they hope to lure Eric Cantona out of retirement. "We are interested in signing Cantona," said Flamengo's vice-president, Michel Assef.

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