Jefferies walks away from Hearts

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Hearts confirmed last night that their manager, Jim Jefferies, has left the club by mutual consent.

Hearts confirmed last night that their manager, Jim Jefferies, has left the club by mutual consent.

The Tynecastle manager took the Edinburgh club to Scottish Cup success in 1998 and to third place in the Premier League last season, but financial constraints have affected the development of his squad this season and Jefferies has been forced to dismantle much of his team this campaign. They are fifth in the table a third of the way into the season, but 19 points adrift of the leaders Celtic and they recently crashed to a 6-2 defeat at the hands of their bitter local rivals Hibernian.

Paulo Wanchope has been cleared by Costa Rica to play for Manchester City against his old club West Ham on Saturday.

Costa Rica had wanted Wanchope to report for international duty 48 hours earlier ahead of Wednesday's vital World Cup qualifier with Guatemala, but have now agreed to City's request to let the striker play at Upton Park before jetting out that night. Wanchope should return to Maine Road in time for the derby against Manchester United on 18 November.

Aston Villa's injury-hit winger David Ginola has stepped up his comeback bid after completing his first 90 minutes of the season.

The Frenchman, who has been troubled by a back injury and a torn thigh muscle, emerged unscathed from a private friendly with Wolves and is hoping to feature when Villa face his former club Tottenham on Saturday at Villa Park.

Southampton's French striker Patrice Tano has left the club and returned to France after having his contract cancelled just four months after arriving at The Dell.

The Saints manager, Glenn Hoddle, signed Tano from his former club Monaco on a free transfer in July after the 18-year-old impressed during Southampton's summer training camp in Spain. But the Ivory Coast-born striker has made just two starts for the reserves since his move and has now been released by the former England coach amid passport difficulties - Southampton refused to allow Tano to sign a contract at The Dell until he produced a valid French passport and he has been sent home after failing to obtain one.

* The referees Matt Messias and Clive Wilkes have been rewarded for their performances in the Nationwide League this season by being offered appointments to Premiership matches from December.

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