Football: Sutton is pounds 11m target for Villa

By Alan Nixon

ASTON VILLA are reportedly trying to sign Chris Sutton from Blackburn Rovers for pounds 11m to spearhead their unexpectedly strong challenge in the Premiership this season.

John Gregory, Villa's manager, still has available the pounds 12.6m the club received from Manchester United for Dwight Yorke and sees Sutton as an ideal replacement.

His opposite number at Rovers, Roy Hodgson, will not be happy with another transfer move distracting his side, who have not followed through on their promising finish to last season. He has already complained about Tottenham's interest in Tim Sherwood unsettling the midfielder. In addition, Hodgson has had to contend with injuries to his strikers which led to him playing Jason Wilcox up front alone in the Uefa Cup against Lyons.

The head of Italy's footballers' union, Sergio Campana, has called for a six-month strike to protest against the handling of the doping scandal that has engulfed Serie A. Campana said the inquiry into the use of banned substances in Italy's first division had violated players' rights to privacy. But he added: "If the inquiry shows that players voluntarily broke anti- doping regulations then they should be punished for ruining the game's image."

The inquiry began this summer when the Roma coach, Zdenek Zeman, suggested two Juventus players had used illegal substances. Anti-doping investigators at the Italian Olympic Committee have also opened an inquiry.

Italian players went on strike once before, in March 1996, over working conditions.

David Lloyd, Hull City's owner, said yesterday that he will close the Third Division club unless a buyer comes forward. Lloyd, who put the club up for sale on Saturday, is prepared to write off the pounds 4m he has put in. He said: "I am going. I will not put the club into receivership or administration. I don't have to do that because it is my money, my debt."

Nottingham Forest have offered Bolton pounds 3m for Nathan Blake in an attempt to head off Wimbledon, who have made a similar bid.

Nigel Clough has left Manchester City after the club agreed to pay up the nine remaining months of his contract. Clough, who has not played first-team football for City since the end of the 1996-97 season, had been on about pounds 250,000 a year since signing for pounds 1m in January 1996. His 38 first-team appearances have cost pounds 40,000 per game.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Web Developer - Junior / Mid Weight

£15000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: To support their continued grow...

Recruitment Genius: Marketing Data Specialist

£22000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: They are the go-to company for ...

Recruitment Genius: Search Marketing Specialist - PPC / SEO

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join the UK's leadin...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Administrator

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This caravan dealership are currently recruiti...

Day In a Page

Is this the future of flying: battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks?

Is this the future of flying?

Battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks
Isis are barbarians – but the Caliphate is a dream at the heart of all Muslim traditions

Isis are barbarians

but the Caliphate is an ancient Muslim ideal
The Brink's-Mat curse strikes again: three tons of stolen gold that brought only grief

Curse of Brink's Mat strikes again

Death of John 'Goldfinger' Palmer the latest killing related to 1983 heist
Greece debt crisis: 'The ministers talk to us about miracles' – why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum

'The ministers talk to us about miracles'

Why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum
Call of the wild: How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate

Call of the wild

How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate
Greece debt crisis: What happened to democracy when it’s a case of 'Vote Yes or else'?

'The economic collapse has happened. What is at risk now is democracy...'

If it doesn’t work in Europe, how is it supposed to work in India or the Middle East, asks Robert Fisk
The science of swearing: What lies behind the use of four-letter words?

The science of swearing

What lies behind the use of four-letter words?
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won't have him back

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won’t have him back
Africa on the menu: Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the continent

Africa on the menu

Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the hot new continent
Donna Karan is stepping down after 30 years - so who will fill the DKNY creator's boots?

Who will fill Donna Karan's boots?

The designer is stepping down as Chief Designer of DKNY after 30 years. Alexander Fury looks back at the career of 'America's Chanel'
10 best statement lightbulbs

10 best statement lightbulbs

Dare to bare with some out-of-the-ordinary illumination
Wimbledon 2015: Heather Watson - 'I had Serena's poster on my wall – now I'm playing her'

Heather Watson: 'I had Serena's poster on my wall – now I'm playing her'

Briton pumped up for dream meeting with world No 1
Wimbledon 2015: Nick Bollettieri - It's time for big John Isner to produce the goods to go with his thumping serve

Nick Bollettieri's Wimbledon Files

It's time for big John Isner to produce the goods to go with his thumping serve
Dustin Brown: Who is the tennis player who knocked Rafael Nadal out of Wimbeldon 2015?

Dustin Brown

Who is the German player that knocked Nadal out of Wimbeldon 2015?
Ashes 2015: Damien Martyn - 'England are fired up again, just like in 2005...'

Damien Martyn: 'England are fired up again, just like in 2005...'

Australian veteran of that Ashes series, believes the hosts' may become unstoppable if they win the first Test