Ferguson move in the balance

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The Independent Online

Duncan Ferguson's proposed return to Everton looks to have stalled because the player cannot agree a settlement with Newcastle United.

Duncan Ferguson's proposed return to Everton looks to have stalled because the player cannot agree a settlement with Newcastle United.

Reports on Merseyside over the weekend suggested that the 28-year-old had agreed personal terms with the Goodison Park club and was due to undergo a medical yesterday.

Ferguson, however, accompanied Newcastle to Spain for their friendly against Espanyol in Barcelona on Sunday, and although he did not take the field, United are privately insisting that he is their player. Everton are still trying to sort out a deal for the striker, but there is a £1m shortfall because the Scot wants money from both clubs to move.

Ferguson, who is taking a pay cut, is seeking a £500,000 severance payment from Newcastle and a similar sum off Everton as a 'sweetener' to complete the deal.

Walter Smith has made the Israeli international midfielder Idan Tal his latest signing in a deal worth £1m. The Everton manager has agreed a fee with Tal's club Maccabi Petach-Tikva and hopes to have the deal finalised this week. Tal - who is a regular in the Israeli national squad - is expected to be granted a work permit soon.

Everton are selling Richard Dunne to Wimbledon in a £2.5m deal. Dunne has fallen out with Smith but the Dons' manager Terry Burton thinks he will be the type of defender he needs to build a side around. Dunne has had trouble on and off the pitch and is starting the season with a suspension after a red card at Leeds last term.

Wimbledon are insisting they have not yet accepted Ipswich Town's offer for Hermann Hreidarsson, even though the Suffolk club have announced that they had agreed terms for a club-record £4m purchase of the Icelandic international defender.

Ipswich's chairman David Sheepshanks said: "We eventually managed to tie the deal up. We are delighted that we have got a proven international player to boost our defence." However, Wimbledon's chief executive David Barnard said the deal is still a long way from being completed.

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