Effenberg to join City on £4m contract

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The Independent Football

Stefan Effenberg has agreed to join Manchester City on a £4m two-year contract. The German midfield general will be unveiled as Kevin Keegan's next signing in the next couple of days after Bayern Munich insiders revealed that the move has been concluded.

Effenberg has met Keegan to discuss a deal that has been mooted since City were promoted to the Premiership. The 33-year-old has agreed a record £40,000-a-week and two seasons of employment in Manchester.

Effenberg has a great reputation as a player, holding the Champions' League trophy aloft last season, but he is also known as a strong and outspoken personality. He caused a storm in Germany last week by blaming record unemployment on a "lazy" population and he has had numerous disputes with clubs and the media. But Keegan sees him as the type of leader City will need to inspire them towards a top-six finish.

Keegan is also working on a £10m-plus move for a striker. He has asked about Leeds United's Robbie Keane and is also chasing Empoli's new Italian international Massimo Maccarone.

The former England defender Terry Butcher has taken over as Motherwell manager after Eric Black and the chief executive Pat Nevin resigned from the Scottish Premier League club.

Motherwell have been put up for sale by the chairman John Boyle, while Black looks set to join the new Coventry manager, Gary McAllister, at Highfield Road. Butcher has previously been in charge at Coventry and Sunderland.

Liverpool will make one last plea to the Premier League tomorrow to have the date of their crucial home game with Blackburn switched to the same night as the game between Manchester United and Arsenal.

The season's final games on 11 May kick off at the same time, but the Liverpool manager, Gérard Houllier, believes that the previous matches involving the three championship rivals should all be on the same night, 8 May, when United are due to play the Gunners. Liverpool want their home match with Blackburn on 5 May switched to 8 May.

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