Scots may join Irish in joint bid for Euro 2008

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The Independent Football

Scotland could submit a joint bid with the Republic of Ireland to host the Euro 2008 finals after Uefa received six bids by yesterday's deadline.

The Scots had originally favoured a lone bid but are now considering a joint bid with the Republic after reviewing the schedule of conditions from European football's ruling body. The only other single bid has come from Hungary, with the other four coming in the form of joint applications from Austria/Switzerland, Bosnia/Croatia, Greece/Turkey, and Denmark/Finland/Norway/Sweden (Nordic 2008).

Corrado Grabbi could be set for a return to Italy after Blackburn confirmed that there had been a number of enquiries for the striker. Napoli and Bologna are reportedly interested in signing Grabbi, who only joined Rovers in a £6.75m move from Ternana this summer, when the Italian transfer window re-opens in a few weeks' time.

The Blackburn manager, Graeme Souness, has confirmed that he has been contacted by two agents, but says there have been no bids for Grabbi, who has managed just one goal in 10 appearances for the club. "The issue of whether he is for sale or not is irrelevant because we've not had a bid for the player," Souness said. "We've been contacted by a couple of agents, but that may not necessarily mean anything. Ciccio is aware of the situation because he has seen the reports in the Italian press, but he still wants to prove himself here."

Stockport County's Richard Sneekes has left Edgeley Park after being told that he would not have his contract extended. The former West Bromwich Albion midfielder signed for County in September on a three-month loan and was in new manager Carlton Palmer's first team selection as Stockport drew 1-1 with Watford.

The West Bromwich midfielder Michael Appleton is unlikely to play again this season after tearing cruciate ligaments in his right knee. The 25-year-old sustained the injury in an accidental training ground collision with the defender Des Lyttle on Monday. Appleton will undergo an exploratory operation this weekend to assess the extent of the damage, although early indications are that he may be ruled out for up to nine months.

The Sheffield United striker Laurent D'Jaffo's bid to return to first-team action has been put back with the news that his Achilles injury will keep him out for another two weeks. He has not played since the 2-0 defeat to Burnley on 4 November.

Coventry City have appointed Richard Money as first-team coach. The former Scunthorpe manager has relinquished his role as youth director and has signed a deal which runs alongside that of manager Roland Nilsson.

Sheffield Wednesday have taken Jamie Pollock on trial at Hillsborough. The former Middlesbrough, Bolton and Manchester City midfielder is under contract with Crystal Palace but has not played since September after falling out of favour at Selhurst Park. He has been training on his own, but Wednesday manager Terry Yorath has brought him in to practise with his struggling side with a view to a permanent deal.

Italy's state-run RAI television network is unable to pay for the rights for next year's World Cup and may be forced to discontinue its tradition of live telecasts of national team matches. Claudio Cappon, RAI's general director, said yesterday that "at the moment, there is no room in the company's budget for the 2002 World Cup."

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