Sporting Digest: Football

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The Independent Online
Birmingham City have started work on a pounds 1.4m stand at their Railway End which will raise the ground's capacity to over 30,000.

England have dropped one place to fifth in the Fifa world rankings. Brazil, Germany and the Czech Republic are still first, second and third respectively but Mexico have moved ahead of England.

Stephen Pears, who made more than 350 first-team appearances in goal for Middlesbrough, is to rejoin the club as a coach at the new football academy.

Watford have appointed Howard Wells as chief executive. Wells, 51, is currently chief executive of the UK Sports Council and will take up his position in July.

Bolton are holding talks with the West Bromich Albion striker Bob Taylor, who had loan spells with the club this season, about a permanent move.

Georgi Hristov, the Barnsley striker, was sent off for kicking a defender in Macedonia's 1-0 defeat to Canada in a friendly international in Toronto. The Brentford forward Niall Thompson scored the winning goal.

Falkirk's future was secured yesterday when a court lifted the liquidation order that has been hanging over the club.

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