Trio linger in Spanish prison as Premiership prospects slide

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The Independent Online

The Leicester City manager, Micky Adams, can all but give up hope of selecting Paul Dickov, Keith Gillespie or Frank Sinclair for this Saturday's Premiership match at Birmingham.

The Leicester City manager, Micky Adams, can all but give up hope of selecting Paul Dickov, Keith Gillespie or Frank Sinclair for this Saturday's Premiership match at Birmingham.

Adams, who offered to resign in the wake of the arrests, said on Monday that the trio were available for selection, despite being held in a Spanish jail facing charges of sexually assaulting three African women from Germany during the club's training camp in La Manga last week.

However, Adams' confidence was puncturedyesterday when Spanish authorities decided the players' application for bail would not be heard until tomorrow at the earliest, by which time the trio will have spent seven nights in Sangonera prison. Even if their release was secured and they flew home tomorrow they would not be ready for the match at St Andrew's. Although all are fit, they would not have trained for a week, while their mental state would surely preclude them from figuring against Steve Bruce's side.

The bail hearing was delayed because the judge Jacinto Areste, who is overseeing the case, is awaiting the results of forensic tests that are being reviewed in Madrid, while there are 300 pages of evidence and statements to sift through.

Luis Ruiperez, who along with his daughter, Ana, forms the Spanish legal team working on the players' behalf, said the three may face their accusers tomorrow at the Palace of Justice in Cartagena.

The Leicester chief executive, Tim Davies, returned to Spain on Monday night determined to ensure "justice can be done" and "the right facts come out" in relation to the alleged attack at the Hyatt Regency Hotel, in La Manga, last Monday.

Davies said: "I get a sense that the lawyers are more optimistic at present and the timescale for this would be some resolution at some stage this week. I think resolution can be a number of outcomes. Either everybody returns to England totally free of any charges, they might return to England to face trial at another date, or it may be that the players stay in jail a little bit longer."

Davies confirmed the players were being supported by their partners, with Dickov's wife Janet seeing her husband yesterday for the first time since his arrest a week ago, while Sinclair's fiancée, Nicola Wealleans, and Gillespie's girlfriend, Kelly Maguire, have already visited the prison.

"It is a very difficult time for the partners of the players," Davies said. "They are doing the very best they can in very difficult and trying circumstances. I think they are all here to support their partners or husbands."

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