Florida suits Daum just fine

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The Independent Online

See Naples and die, they say. Well, Christophe Daum believes the town can give his career the kiss of life. The most wanted man (by the tabloids, that is) to skip Germany since Adolph Eichmann is holed up in Naples, Florida, rather than the more inspiring Italian version. He has recovered his composure enough, following his failed drugs test, to insist that he will undergo the process once more to prove he does not use cocaine.

See Naples and die, they say. Well, Christophe Daum believes the town can give his career the kiss of life. The most wanted man (by the tabloids, that is) to skip Germany since Adolph Eichmann is holed up in Naples, Florida, rather than the more inspiring Italian version. He has recovered his composure enough, following his failed drugs test, to insist that he will undergo the process once more to prove he does not use cocaine.

It is unlikely to win Daum back the job as German national coach, and Bayer Leverkusen seem unlikely to welcome him with open arms given that their Champions' League campaign dissolved when his controversy over drugs and prostitutes began.

They slipped out of the tournament in midweek despite beating Spartak Moscow, with Rudi Völler in temporary charge of the club that still pays his wages as director of football.

Just 24 hours later, Daum's offices at Leverkusen's BayArena, and his home in Koblenz, were being searched by police investigating him on suspicion of possessing cocaine. Unlike Daum's new home, there were no Versace suits on show in the raid. Pastel colours are fine for Miami Vice, but on the Rhineland a good raincoat is all a cop needs.

 

The feud between Barcelona and Real Madrid seems to have taken a turn for the worse with the return of Luis Figo to the Nou Camp.

The man who took his 37 million pieces of silver to join the Champions' League holders was killing off another of his former loves in midweek, as Real routed Figo's first club, Sporting Lisbon, 4-0.

However, a real life version of sudden death was happening elsewhere in Spain, prompted by events thousands of miles away in rainy Yorkshire. Rivaldo's 94th-minute goal against Leeds United added a twist to a row that had broken out in Chincilla de Villar in south-west Spain between two neighbours.

A Real fan, thinking Leeds had won, decided to "repay" his Barça neighbour by letting off fireworks. When he returned home to discover Rivaldo had equalised, the 57-year old fan got his hunting rifle and went back and shot his rival dead.

Meanwhile, Portugal have cancelled a friendly with the Catalan "national" side in December because of the hostile reception meted out to Figo last weekend in the Nou Camp.

 

Rangers' new goalkeeper, Jesper Christiansen, is regarded as a successor to Peter Schmeichel for Denmark, and he wasted no time in following the great Dane's outspokenness. Christiansen, signed last week from Odense for £1.7m, criticised skipper Lorenzo Amoruso in an interview with a Danish journalist after the 2-0 defeat by Sturm Graz.

Rangers' hopes now rest on them defeating Monaco in 10 days' time, but given the French side's ability to reduce goalkeepers to tears, perhaps Mr Christiansen might have been too hasty in launching a mutiny against his captain.

Galatasaray's rookie keeper, Kerem, was so distressed by losing four goals on the Riviera that he was blubbering in the dressing room, refusing to come out for the second half.

Now the Turkish side, who need to beat Sturm Graz, will solve their goalkeeping headache (Claudio Taffarel is injured) by embracing Ghanaian international Richard Kingston, to whom they gave the kiss-off in the summer after five years' service.

 

When word reached the diary that Dougal had sorted out Zebedee for headbutting, we wondered if The Magic Roundabout had employed scriptwriters from The Sopranos to spice up its image.

Happily, the only ZZ who blew his top was called Zinedine. Juventus star Zidane was rightly shown the red card by Stuart Dougal for sorting out Hamburg's Jochen Keintz - as Duncan Ferguson can testify, a Scottish ref knows a headbutt when he sees it.

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