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Football: United's Cooke makes his Maine Road debut

MANCHESTER CITY have received clearance for the Manchester United winger Terry Cooke to make his debut against Fulham at Maine Road today.

Cooke will follow in the footsteps of Denis Law, Brian Kidd and Peter Barnes as players who have appeared for both Manchester clubs. Having just completed a spell at Wrexham, Cooke has joined City on a three-month loan period as the manager Joe Royle attempts to add new life to his side's flagging promotion challenge.

"This is a massive club," Cooke said after arriving at Maine Road. "We saw the support they have when they beat us at Wrexham on Boxing Day.

"This club should be in the Premiership. Some Premiership clubs struggle to get the size of support Manchester City demand."

Cooke has fully recovered now after missing almost an entire season when he snapped a cruciate ligament whilst playing in a reserve game for United.

"I had no hesitation in joining Manchester City," he said. "I can promise the fans I will give 100 per cent and I hope they will appreciate that."

Port Vale have allowed the French forward, Christophe Horlaville, to return home and sign for Metz after only three appearances. Vale had originally signed Horlaville on loan from another French side, Le Havre.

However, the Potteries side, who have already been forced to use a club- record 34 players this season, failed with an pounds 800,000 bid for the York striker Richard Cresswell.

Martin Thomas, who scored the winning goal for Swansea City in their 1-0 FA Cup victory over West Ham on Wednesday, may require an operation that would rule him out of the fourth-round tie at home to Derby County.

Thomas, who signed for the Welsh side on a free transfer from Fulham last summer, injured a knee in the early stages of Wednesday's game. "He did it in his second tackle, after about 10 minutes, and I don't know how he managed to stay on. It may be a tweaked ligament," Swansea's manager, John Hollins, said.

Northampton Town have signed the Wimbledon striker Andy Clarke on a month's loan. The 31-year-old has been unable to break into the Dons' first team this season and has signed in time to be considered for Northampton's home game today against the Second Division high-fliers Walsall.