West Ham pay pounds 2.3m for Kitson

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The Independent Online
After weeks of uncertainty, Paul Kitson finally left Newcastle United yesterday, joining West Ham in a pounds 2.3m move. Kitson, 26, has signed a three and a half year contract after agreeing personal terms.

The striker was brought by Kevin Keegan to Newcastle from Derby in September 1994 for a fee of pounds 2.25m but spent most of his time at St James' Park on the bench, making only 26 first-team starts.

His transfer will go some way to solving Harry Redknapp's striker crisis. The West Ham manager was previously frustrated in his attempts to land Celtic's Dutch marksman Pierre van Hooijdonk, Wimbledon's Dean Holdsworth and Stoke's Mike Sheron.

The Arsenal manager, Arsene Wenger, is making a bid to snatch the 22- year-old Polish striker Marek Citko from the grasp of Blackburn Rovers. Wenger has matched Blackburn's pounds 2.8m offer, according to his club, Widzew Lodz.

Citko, who has already been to Blackburn to look at the set-up, was due to arrive there on Monday to complete the move, but that plan has been changed. The Gunners have been considering a move for Citko since he scored against England at Wembley in October. However, the price has now come into their range from the original pounds 4m asking price.

Roy Hodgson is being lined up to take over from Sven Goran Eriksson as coach at Sampdoria at the end of the season. Hodgson has come under fire at Internazionale recently after a poor run of results. Their president, Massimo Moratti, has warned that there could be a change of coach, and sources closes to Inter believe Hodgson will be replaced.

Millwall have been asked to explain the scenes at the end of Saturday's home defeat by Bristol City. Three home supporters ran on to the New Den pitch in the final minute of the Second Division game and headed for the referee, David Pugh.

Celtic have threatened the Scottish Football Association with legal action over what they claim was the bad handling of Jorge Cadete's arrival from Portugal last season. Cadete was signed from Sporting Lisbon but delays in his registration made him ineligible for the Tennents Scottish Cup semi-final against Rangers. Celtic have written to the SFA asking to be reimbursed for Cadete's wages for the two-week period he was unable to play.

Lee Bowyer has withdrawn from the England Under-21 squad for next week's European Championship match against Italy at Ashton Gate. The Leeds midfielder aggravated an ankle injury during the FA Cup tie against Arsenal on Tuesday.

The Leicester City midfielder, Neil Lennon, has been fined pounds 500 by the Football Association and warned about his future conduct after being found guilty of bringing the game into disrepute. He was alleged to have made obscene gestures at Newcastle fans during Leicester's Premiership victory at Filbert Street in October. The Scarborough manager, Mick Wadsworth, has been cleared by the FA of using foul and abusive language in the Third Division match against Brighton last December.

Shrewsbury will not face any punishment for calling off their Auto Windscreens Shield tie with Scunthorpe at 24 hours' notice. The Shrews cried off on Monday because 14 players fell victim to a flu bug afflicting the club. The League has ordered the game to be be re-staged at Gay Meadow next Tuesday.

Aston Villa flotation, page 18

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