Football: Wright faces FA investigation

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The Independent Online
THE FOOTBALL ASSOCIATION yesterday revealed they would investigate reports that the West Ham United striker Ian Wright damaged the referee's dressing-room at Upton Park after being sent off against Leeds.

The former England player was incensed at the decision of the referee Rob Harris to send him off for two bookable offences and had to be restrained by his team-mate Trevor Sinclair. There have been claims that Wright kicked in the door of the referee's room in a rage.

West Ham have confirmed an incident took place and the FA spokesman, Steve Double, confirmed they are awaiting reports. "We'll await the reports of the match officials before deciding what action, if any, needs to be taken," he said. Wright had to be restrained by team-mates as he left the pitch after just 12 minutes of the game between the Uefa Cup rivals. He was furious after Oxford ref Harris - in his first season as a Premiership official - showed him a second yellow card for "acting in an aggressive manner towards an opponent".

Talks which could lead to the permanent appointment of Kevin Keegan as England manager are due to begin this week. Geoff Thompson, the acting FA chairman, yesterday said discussions will get under way within days after Keegan's announcement last week that he wants the job. Speaking on Radio 5 Live, Thompson said: "We hope to have a meeting of the sub- committee responsible for it later this week, and clearly after our discussions then further discussions will take place with Kevin."

Thompson admitted that there are two camps within the FA over when the appointment should be made, with some suggesting that the keys to the kingdom should not be handed over until after the Euro 2000 qualifying campaign. "I think there's a diversity of opinion, but only slightly," he said. Asked if he thought the manager would be in place before June, he added: "I very much hope so."

Ronny Johnsen will try to play through the pain barrier for Manchester United in their treble chase before going in for a double knee operation next month.

The versatile Norwegian has confirmed he will have surgery on both knees on 1 June, just days after the European Cup final against Bayern Munich in Barcelona. Johnsen has been suffering from a career-threatening condition known as "jumpers knee". Other victims include the tennis player Steffi Graf while Brazilian Ronaldo has early signs of the injury. Johnsen, 30 next month, has been advised that surgery, which has a 70 per cent recovery rate, is necessary and has also been told to rest beforehand, but United need him for the title run-in.

Tottenham are set to sign the Israeli international left back Najwan Gharib in a pounds 1.3m deal.

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