Football: United complete pounds 3.75m signing of Keane

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ROY KEANE became the most expensive player in English football on Saturday when he put an end to months of transfer speculation and signed for Manchester United, moving from Nottingham Forest at a cost of pounds 3.75m, writes Owen Slot. The 21- year-old Republic of Ireland midfielder had vacillated between Blackburn Rovers and United, but in recent weeks looked destined for his eventual home, Old Trafford.

Keane started pre-season training yesterday with United who are to play in a four-club tournament in South Africa which starts tomorrrow.

Another Nottingham Forest player, Gary Charles, is also on the move. The 23-year-old right-back agreed terms with Derby County over the weekend; the fee, as yet undecided, is expected to be near pounds 700,000.

The Marseille match-fixing scandal took another turn yesterday when Joseph Blatter, the general-secretary of the game's governing body, Fifa, suggested in an interview in SonntagsBlick, the Swiss tabloid newspaper, that if charges of corruption and match-fixing were proved, then Fifa might ban the involved players from all international matches. 'We are obliged to control soccer worldwide and to intervene when things happen that harm soccer,' he said. Blatter said that Fifa could come to a decision on the affair as early as Wednesday when an examining magistrate confronts Jean-Pierre Bernes, the Marseille general secretary.