Cole and Souness settle differences with a hug
Thursday 20 March 2003
Andy Cole and Graeme Souness buried the hatchet at Blackburn Rovers yesterday – and not in each other's heads – after an Ewood Park meeting.
The feuding pair sat down to talk after their much-publicised row threatened to escalate to ridiculous proportions and lead to Cole, Blackburn's record signing, being frozen out or even sold.
The striker and his manager even finished the meeting with a bearhug as their problems were put in the past after days of high-profile wrangling. The exact content of the meeting is being kept secret and whether Cole apologised is also under wraps.
John Terry's international exile looks set to end this weekend when the England manager Sven Goran Eriksson names his squad for the Euro 2004 Cup qualifiers against Liechtenstein and Turkey. The 22-year-old Chelsea centre-back lost a year of his international career while involved in a court case 14 months ago. He was cleared of all charges in an affray case but missed out on England selection during the case. However, his performances for Chelsea this season have seen him assume the captain's armband in the absence through injury of Marcel Desailly.
Eriksson said: "John is playing well and it is a great boost for him to be made captain as well at Chelsea. He has taken his chance and I'm very happy to have seen him do so well."
Terry could well make the starting line-up for at least one of the England matches, with big fitness doubts over Arsenal's Sol Campbell and Manchester United's Wes Brown.
The Newcastle midfielder Hugo Viana has suggested they loan him out unless he becomes a first-team regular. "I have been thinking about a move but have not talked to my agent about it," Viana, who was on the bench for Newcastle's Champions' League defeat against Barcelona last night, said. "The club directors know I am happy to have signed for Newcastle but that I am not happy with the present situation. I would like to be more useful next season. I could change scenery, perhaps for a year, but remain a Newcastle player."
The Portuguese international joined the Magpies for £8.5m from Sporting Lisbon last June.
Leeds United are set to make 17 office staff redundant as part of cost-cutting measures. In a statement, the Leeds chairman, Peter Ridsdale, said: "On March 7, 2003, Leeds United plc announced its intent to reduce its cost base by approximately £3m on an annualised basis. Today, we have entered into a formal consultation process with 17 employees which may lead to them being declared redundant."
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