Venables to fight 'plot'

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The Independent Online
Terry Venables intends to continue his attempts to combat what he considers is a conspiracy to discredit him, even though the police have called off their investigation - started at his request - without bringing any charges, because they did not consider it in the public interest.

In a statement to be issued today through his solicitor, Nick Trainer, Venables says: "I happen to believe that protecting anyone, let alone the England coach, from the campaign of vilification that I have had to endure over the last two and a half years must be in the public interest."

Venables also wonders why he should have read about the police decision in the newspaper before being notified. "I consider this matter far from over. The evidence in my possession, which is growing daily, leaves all those that have seen it clear in their mind that there is a case to answer."

Venables says he will fight to "preserve my reputation" with every resource available to him.

The Football Association, the Football League and Premier League are to call a summit to settle their differences following their recent spat over television rights. The FA chief executive, Graham Kelly, has written to his League counterparts, asking for a meeting to discuss the way forward. "The needs of the game and the unity of the game demand this," Kelly said.

Bradford City have won their fight to stop paying goalkeeper Paul Tomlinson's wages. The Second Division side have been paying Tomlinson pounds 650 a week for five months since he refused a contract, but the Football League's appeals committee has decided that he will not be paid after the end of the month. Bradford, however, can still demand a transfer fee for Tomlinson if he finds a new club.

Chris Kamara, Bradford's assistant manager, said: "It's a victory for football that someone should not be allowed to stay at home and get paid. Freedom of contract is not designed for people who want to sit on their backsides. It's supposed to help those who want to play."

Mel Machin, the Bourne-mouth manager, has been censured by the Football Association after being found guilty of bringing the game into disrepute. He was charged, along with his assistant manager, John Williams, following remarks made to referee Barry Knight in the match against Crewe on 16 September.