Sporting Digest: Football

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NEWCASTLE UNITED are to pay the United States Soccer Federation more than pounds 250,000 for the services of Brad Friedel next season. The 23- year-old goalkeeper has won 21 caps for his country, and had a trial with Nottingham Forest in 1992-93.

NOTTINGHAM FOREST are giving free transfers to the full-backs, Brett Williams, a long-term understudy to Stuart Pearce, and Ray Byrne.

AJAX have offered dollars 6m ( pounds 4m) for Ronaldo, Cruzeiro's 17-year-old striker, who has been included in Brazil's World Cup squad.

TREVOR FRANCIS, the Sheffield Wednesday manager, has arranged a pre-season friendly with his neighbours, Sheffield United, after the city was deprived of its derby matches by the Blades' relegation from the Premiership. The teams will meet at Hillsborough on Tuesday, 9 August.

FIFA, the world governing body, is to affiliate 14 national federations at its congress in Chicago next month, bringing its membership up to 191. But the general-secretary, Sepp Blatter, said yesterday that Fifa's executive committee had decided to give only provisional membership to war- torn Bosnia-Herzegovina because it did not yet meet Fifa criteria. 'We will look at it with a positive eye, although there is no point making them a full member when they cannot even play football,' Blatter said. The 14 successful applicants are Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgystan, Moldova, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Djibouti, Dominica, the Cook Islands, Macedonia, Tonga, the Czech Republic and Slovakia.

TWO leading British referees, Keith Hackett and Roger Milford, are on a list of 15 officials dropped from the list for next season. The majority are out because they have reached the retirement age of 48.

FA PREMIERSHIP / ENDSLEIGH LEAGUE (Referees retiring after 1993-94 season): K Barratt (Coventry), J Borrett (Ipswich), V Callow (Solihull), B Coddington (Sheffield), D Frampton (Poole), R Groves (Weston-super- Mare), A Gunn (South Chailey), K Hackett (Sheffield), J Key (Rotherham), H King (Merthyr Tydfil), R Milford (Bristol), M Peck (Kendal), R Shepherd (Guiseley), A Smith (Rubery, Birmingham), R Wiseman (Borehamwood).

KONICA LEAGUE OF WALES: Llansantffraid 2 Connah's Quay 2. Final leading positions: 1 Bangor (P 38, Pts 830; 2 Inter Cardiff (38-81); 3 Ton Pentre (38-71).

PORTUGUESE LEAGUE: Maritimo 2 Sporting 1.

INTERNATIONAL FRIENDLY (Reykjavik, Thursday): Iceland 1 (Orlygsson 40) Bolivia 0.