Kluivert lands in trouble again

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The Independent Online
Dutch police are investigating allegations of rape against the Ajax forward, Patrick Kluivert, and three other men. "A 20-year-old woman made a report to us of rape by four young men and one of those men was the well-known football player," a police spokesman said.

The Dutch international striker, who is due to move to Milan, has been involved in controversy before. In May 1996, he was convicted of vehicular homicide after smashing a borrowed BMW into another car, killing the driver. He was sentenced to do community service.

Nottingham Forest have signed the French international defender Thierry Bonalair. Forest have secured the 30-year-old, who has been capped five times by his country, on a free transfer from the Swiss club, Neuchatel Xamax. He is reported to have agreed a two-year contract worth around pounds 400,000.

Leeds United paraded two new signings yesterday: the Dutch striker, Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink - who scored 27 league goals for Boavista last season, only one fewer than the entire Leeds side in the Premiership - arrived from Portugal's Boavista for pounds 2m and the Norwegian utility player Alf- Inge Haland, 24, from relegated Nottingham Forest for a fee still to be set by a tribunal.

"I've come to Leeds United to get them back on the rails the way they were in the past," Graham said. "I think a rampant Leeds United is good for football and good for Yorkshire."

Manchester United have denied a claim from Bayern Munich that they have given Markus Babbel until Monday to decide whether or not to join them. The Bayern general manager, Uli Honess, had said: "Manchester are keeping their offer open until Monday - and we want to know one way or the other by then too."

Maurice Watkins, United's solicitor and a club director, disputed that, saying: "That is not correct. We have not imposed any time limit. It will take as long as it takes." The 24-year-old German international defender turned down United's first offer, which would have given him around pounds 1m a year and his club pounds 5m.

The Manchester United midfielder Michael Appleton is a transfer target for Barnsley, Sunderland and Grimsby. The 21-year-old had a loan spell with Grimsby, who tried to sign him on a permanent basis. Appleton rejected personal terms then, but the Blundell Park club have made another approach.

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