Yorke and Cole out in the cold at Blackburn

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The Independent Online

Andy Cole, Dwight Yorke and Andy Todd all appear to be on their way out of Ewood Park. The Blackburn Rovers manager, Graeme Souness, is due to leave the trio out of his squad for this week's pre-season trip to Germany.

Andy Cole, Dwight Yorke and Andy Todd all appear to be on their way out of Ewood Park. The Blackburn Rovers manager, Graeme Souness, is due to leave the trio out of his squad for this week's pre-season trip to Germany.

Cole is being pushed through the exit door and is coveted by Fulham, who have already begun negotiations to sign him, and Yorke and Todd are out of Souness's plans. They can look forward to warm-up matches with the reserves, while Cole could be cleared to find a new club in the next few days.

Blackburn owe Cole around £3m in wages and will have to come to an agreement with him. Cole is unhappy by the way he has been shunted aside, but he can now choose to stay in the shadows or take up a new challenge elsewhere.

Fulham have contacted both Souness and Rovers officials to begin work on the financial package needed to make the move happen. Yorke has not found a club, while Todd's transfer to Wigan stalled because of the size of the fee.

Possibly on the way in at Ewood is Stockport's young Scottish left winger Andy Welsh - also wanted by Sunderland - who Souness is taking to Germany on a trial basis.

At Newcastle,Laurent Robert has dug in his heels and has turned down a swap deal to Marseille. The French winger is being squeezed out of Sir Bobby Robson's squad, but he is unwilling to take a pay cut to go back across the Channel.

Robert's agent flew in for talks with Newcastle about the deal, with Marseille's Egyptian striker Mido possibly heading the other way. However Robert will not move unless he is paid off, and Newcastle are not prepared to do that on their tight budget. Newcastle's transfer dealings are also being held up by a £1m price tag on veteran Gary Speed, who is on Fulham's wanted list. The Fulham manager Chris Coleman is keen on his friend and fellow Welshman, but the club will not pay a fee for him.

Newcastle will not finalise a deal for Manchester United's Nicky Butt while they have Speed on their books, so Robson faces more frustration in the coming weeks.

Fulham have signed midfielder Billy McKinlay. Released by Leicester at the end of last season, the 35-year-old Scot is expected to feature in the reserve side this season before taking up a coaching role.

Tottenham have signed the England Under-16 captain Leigh Mills from Swindon for an undisclosed fee. The deal will also see an as yet unnamed Spurs player join on loan.

The defender Stephen Kelly has signed a contract extension at White Hart Lane. The Republic of Ireland Under-21 captain made 11 Premiership appearances last season following a loan spell at Watford.

Juninho's agent has assured Celtic that money would not be a problem if they wanted to sign the Brazilian midfielder. He has two years left of his deal at Middlesbrough but knows his first-team chances will be limited.

Juninho's agent said: "The player loves Middlesbrough but he wants to be somewhere where he is playing football. With all the players Middlesbrough have signed it looks like he will be forced to leave."

The agent for the Cardiff City striker Robert Earnshaw has invited the club to make a move for his Welsh international client.

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