Football: Walker is the tip for Everton

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The Independent Online
EVERTON expect to have a new manager in place by tomorrow, according to Bill Kenwright, the Everton director whose bid for overall control of the Merseyside club is under consideration by the board.

It is understood that Mike Walker, the Norwich City manager, is the unanimous choice of the board and of the two rivals for the club's chairmanship. Robert Chase, the Norfolk club's chairman, has said that he will give permission for Everton to approach Walker if requested but that he intends to do everything in his power to hold on to the man who has turned Norwich into a leading power in the land in less than two seasons. All that Chase would say yesterday was that he had not as yet heard from Everton and 'didn't want to'.

Walker said at training yesterday: 'I don't want to make a comment on Everton at all because I don't know anything about it. Until such time as my chairman says we have been approached then I am not prepared to say anything.'

'The new man will definitely be decided by Wednesday - irrespective of the bids,' Kenwright said. 'We're going to make an approach to a chairman tomorrow. Money in excess of pounds 6m will be made available to him for new players.'

Kenwright, a West End impresario, was at yesterday's game at Stamford Bridge doing a bit of self-promotion work on Radio Merseyside. He reiterated his strong objection to the rival pounds 20m bid of Peter Johnson, the Tranmere Rovers chairman, which he said was made after the deadline for bids. 'I was one of the original prospective buyers. After long hard deliberations, the club came to the decision to accept my bid but it's been impossible to sanction it because of other events.

'My bid is the best one for Everton football club. I have read in the papers that the Moores family are backing Peter Johnson's bid - there's as much chance of that happening as Graeme Souness has of becoming our next manager.'

Paul Gascoigne, the England and Lazio midfielder, will learn today whether he broke a rib in an impressive display against Sampdoria on Sunday. Gascoigne had to leave the field just after half-time in a 1-1 draw.

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