Palace were to have received pounds 400,000 plus Williams, an England B international, in exchange for Bright, who has scored 91 League goals since a pounds 75,000 move from Leicester five years ago. He formed one of the most potent top-level striking partnerships with Ian Wright until the latter's move to Arsenal last season.
Palace have been unable to offer Williams suitable incentive for returning to Selhurst Park, where he played for Charlton under Lennie Lawrence during their brief spell in the First Division.
One player on a return journey is Vinnie Jones, who agreed to a cut in wages in order to leave Chelsea for Wimbledon, the club with which he found fame and an FA Cup winners' medal in 1988. The pounds 700,000 fee brings the sum paid for Jones's services, by Leeds, Sheffield United, Chelsea and the Dons, to pounds 3m in three years.
Manchester United's European campaign has been strengthened by news that Ryan Giggs, Dennis Irwin, Clayton Blackmore and Darren Ferguson will be classified 'assimilated' players by Uefa, having all played in England for at least five years. United will be able to pick any three for Uefa Cup matches, plus three foreign players from Peter Schmeichel, Andrei Kanchelskis, Brian McClair and Mark Hughes.
Out of action for up to five weeks are Chelsea's full-back Steve Clarke, who had hernia surgery yesterday, and Nottingham Forest utility player, Terry Wilson, who is to have a cyst removed from an Achilles tendon.
Aston Villa's 34-year-old striker Cyrille Regis will undergo an Achilles tendon operation next week after delaying it because of injuries to his fellow forwards, Dwight Yorke and Tony Daley. Yorke is now fit while Daley was undergoing exploratory knee surgery yesterday.
Birmingham City's central defender Paul Mardon, valued at pounds 1m, will be out of action for three weeks with damaged ankle ligaments. Mardon suffered the injury during a trial with Liverpool.