The Liverpool captain, Jamie Redknapp, brought an end to 11 years at the club and completed a move to Tottenham last night. The Anfield club released the 28-year-old former England international from his contract and Redknapp joined Spurs on a free transfer.
"He will be sadly missed by fans and team mates alike and everyone at Liverpool wishes him well with the rest of his career," a Liverpool spokesman said yesterday.
His last first team appearance was as a late substitute in a 2-0 Champions League win over Borussia Dortmund at Anfield on 30 October, three days after starting his final Premiership match for the club against Charlton Athletic. Redknapp began his career at White Hart Lane as a schoolboy before turning professional at Bournemouth. He was signed for Liverpool in 1991 for £350,000 by the then manager Kenny Dalglish. Redknapp was the longest-serving player in the current Liverpool squad after 308 appearances for the Anfield club, some as captain, and scored 41 goals.
A former Liverpool teammate of Redknapp, Paul ince, may also be on his travels soon. The Manchester City manager, Kevin Keegan, is lining up a move for the Middlesbrough captain. City's interest in Ince, who is a free agent this summer, follows the signing of the former Manchester United goalkeeper Peter Schmeichel and a bid for Jaap Stam, once the cornerstone of United's defence. Ince, also a United old boy, is "seriously considering" the move.
Ince has been back near his best form for Middlesbrough despite repeated speculation about moves away from The Riverside. The former England midfielder, who still has a house on the Wirral, has been linked with Wolves, Rangers and even a return to Italy. Keegan is yet to decide on the midfield players he wants, but is aslo understood to be interested in Bayern Munich's Stefan Effenberg and Ipswich's Matt Holland.
Coventry City sacked their manager, Roland Nilsson, yesterday and his assistant, Jim Smith. Nilsson was appointed as the successor to Gordon Strachan in October last year after a spell as caretaker manager in which he guided the First Division club to five wins and a draw in the League.
His unbeaten run extended for a further five First Division games before the Sky Blues lost 3-2 at Millwall at the beginning of November. Six further defeats in Coventry's next 10 fixtures followed before Smith, the former Derby manager, was appointed as assistant to the Swede on 3 January. A run of six games without a win in March and April saw Coventry's play-off hopes disappear and ultimately cost Nilsson and Smith their jobs.
The goalkeeping coach, Steve Ogrizovic, and the reserve team manager, Trevor Peake, have been put in charge for the club's final League game of the season at Burnley.