Football: Wimbledon's move for Olsen put on hold

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The Independent Online
WIMBLEDON'S HOPES of making Egil Olsen their new manager were put on hold last night when talks failed to secure his release from a three-year contract with the Norwegian part-timers, Valerenga.

Wimbledon, who want the former Norway coach to replace Joe Kinnear at Selhurst Park, must agree compensation for Olsen when talks resume. "The parties have not reached an agreement," confirmed the Valerenga chairman, Jon Nordbrekken. "We still disagree on the transfer fee."

Nordbrekken revealed that Wimbledon also want Olsen's assistant, Lars Tjaernaas, and that has further complicated negotiations. "Even if we get compensation for the loss, this is a great dilemma for us," the chairman said. "If we must go out into the market to pay a new coach to free him from his contract, it would cost a lot of money."

Wimbledon's managing director, Sam Hammam, believes Olsen's approach to football would make him the perfect successor to Kinnear, who suffered a heart attack in March before a league game at Sheffield Wednesday. He still has two years of his contract left and will stay at Selhurst Park in a full-time advisory role to assist his successor.

Brian Laudrup's registration could revert back into Chelsea's hands within a month, due to his Danish dream having turned sour.

The forward left Chelsea in December to return to Denmark midway through last season, claiming he was homesick. The 30-year-old, however, has since announced he is quitting FC Copenhagen six months into a three-year deal.

Newspaper allegations about Laudrup and his family have resulted in him exercising a clause in his contract allowing him to leave the Danish capital. But there is also a clause in his old Chelsea contract which could, temporarily at least, see his career take a diversion via west London again.

"If Brian Laudrup wants to play for anyone else, then a fee may be involved and that would come to Chelsea," a spokesman said. It could also lead to Laudrup making a return to Rangers, although Sporting Lisbon are known to be monitoring the situation. "It has turned out differently than I'd hoped," Laudrup said. "Journalists were writing about my private life - that I was getting divorced; that my wife was drinking and that my father was sick."

David Platt may have to wait until next month before knowing whether he will be part of Graham Taylor's plans. The Watford manager held an informal chat with his friend earlier this week, with the former England international considering a return as a player.

"It is unlikely there will be any developments for two or three weeks," confirmed a spokesman for the Marquee Group, Platt's management company.