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Leeds United News from The Sporting Life    Yorkshire Evening Post

February 29: After taking more than 170 witness statements, Leeds police are still looking for 2 more witnesses to the assault on Sarfraz Najeeb. One of the two that they are looking for - both caught on camera outside the Majestyk - appears to have been the victim of an assault himself, but has not previously come forward to press charges.

February 29: Leeds are being linked with a player by the name of Lukic - but this is James, John's nephew - who is currently playing for Matlock Town as a centreback. Lukic jr had a few days training with the club last week and will be hoping to be recalled for a further trial.

February 29: Michael Bridges has declared himself fit enough to start Thursday's UEFA Cup game against AS Roma. Bridges has missed 4 games in which Leeds have only managed a total of 2 goals and his presence will be most welcome against the Italian side. Meanwhile DOL has said that he'd love to have at least half of the Roma side playing for him - don't know if that's supposed to gee up the 11 he's stuck with or warning them that they'll have a tough game on their hands.

February 28: Harry Kewell's booking on Saturday means he will now miss the away game against Bradford on March 12.

February 28: Stephen McPhail will be out of action for a while longer - but at least Eirik Bakke, Gary Kelly and Matthew Jones will be available for Thursday. Michael Bridges is still doubtful as a starter, but should at least get a place on the bench.

February 28: More bad luck for Martin Hiden: further ligament damage in last week's practice match against Huddersfield has ruled him out probably until the end of the season.

February 28: Rod Wallace scored after 75 seconds and went on to complete a hat-trick in 33 minutes as Rangers went on to hammer Dundee United 7-1 at Dens Park last night. Just the sort of finishing we could do with at the moment...

February 27: Leeds United Ladies are having a bit more cup success than their male counterparts: they beat Wolves 1-0 away and are now in the semi-finals of the Women's FA Cup.

February 27: Stories in the press today have the two Milan clubs battling over Harry Kewell, and determined to make Leeds an offer we can't refuse for the 22-year-old. That would be something over £20 million for such a key player, who is signed on a long-term contract, but who has expressed a wish to play in Italy at some point.

February 26: Just seen Lee Bowyer's disallowed goal on Match of the Day - and it was, needless to say, well onside. Having said that, Leeds were the beneficiaries of a similar decision to the one which had Spurs spitting blood over Harry's goal two weeks ago with Juninho's goal being called back for offside Lee Bowyer created plenty of chances - but missed them all, including two that looked harder to miss than score. Still, if he keeps creating them, his luck will change sooner or later.

February 26: Leeds/Bradford Airport will be looking forward to its busiest day ever with an extra seven planes taking Leeds fans to Rome next Thursday. There are at least 4000 fans - and more likely 6000 when you include the unofficial tours - expected to turn up in Rome. Due to work and other reasons, I won't be there so I'll be hoping for a good result on the pitch so I can get to the next round, and also off the pitch, because we don't want to find ourselves on the wrong end of a confrontation with the Italian Police and banned from travelling to the next round.

February 26: Lee Bowyer missed two more sitters and had a goal disallowed for off-side after less than a minute as Leeds dropped two points at the Riverside. There has never been a goal between the two clubs at that ground yet - and poor finishing and good keeping by Schwarzer kept it that way.

February 25: Gary Kelly has agreed an extension to his contract that could keep him at Elland Road until the end of his career. He'll be due a testimonial in 2001/2002 - the 10th anniversary of his debut, and although he's had some injury problems with shin splints, we'd all be happy to see him stay and gain the remarkable distinction of being a one-club player.

February 25: Michael Bridges is a possible starter for tomorrow's game, but Stephen McPhail and David Batty are both still missing with injuries. Jamie McMaster has been drafted into the squad and might be needed to fill a place on the bench.

February 25: Rent-a-quote Tory Edwina Currie was (verbally) attacked by Peter Ridsdale on last night's BBC Question Time for her assertion that Jon Woodgate and Lee Bowyer should have been suspended as soon as they were questioned by police. He reiterated his condemnation of whoever perpetrated the attack, but insisted that due process had to be observed.

February 24: Peter Ridsdale hinted that there might be a big signing due before the deadline next month - but wouldn't be drawn on who or even what position. Whether there really is anything behind it we can only wait and see.

February 24: Worrying reports from Hungary where Australia beat their hosts 3-0 but Harry Kewell was taken off at half-time with an injury - he could be out for the next 2 games.

February 23: Jason Wilcox had a decent enough game on the left side for England tonight - he didn't exactly turn the game, but was solid and made a couple of good crosses. Considering he's only been playing back at Premier League level for 2 months he can be happy with his performance. Meanwhile Ian Harte had an easy tap-in and also produced a good header to lay on Robbie Keane's winner as the Republic of Ireland beat the Czech Republic 3-2 at Lansdowne Road.

February 23: David Batty's scan seemed to indicate that his calf injury has cleared up, but he stil has some inflammation in his ankle.

February 23: The reserves drew 1-1 with Blackburn last night. David Hopkin gave Leeds an early lead, but an error by Danny Milosevic resulted in a Blackburn equaliser. Midfielder Simon Watson broke his leg and is ruled out for the rest of the season.

February 22: Matthew Jones will start for Wales for the first time in their friendly against Qatar in Doha tomorrow.

February 22: Peter Ridsdale, David Batty and several others today gave blood at Elland Road as part of the latest campaign by the National Blood Transfusion Service - click now to find out more.

February 22: The David Batty injury saga continues - he's having a scan on his injured calf/ankle today that might shed some light on his likely availability for the rest of the season.

February 22: Jason Wilcox will start tomorrow night's England game at Wembley against Argentina.

February 22: Jon Woodgate, Lee Bowyer, Alan Smith and Danny Mills all made an appearance in England's 1-0 win over Argentina at U-21 level at Craven Cottage tonight. Woody played the whole game, Bowyer and Mills got a half each, and Smith came on as an early sub for Francis Jeffers. Most impressive was Smith, making some good chances and causing problems for the Argies and Woody was solid as ever at the back.

February 21: Former Leeds front man Noel Whelan has been transfer listed by Coventry. He's still got a year and a half to run on his contract, but he doesn't want to sign another deal at present and so they've got little option but to try to realise some profit from him before he can do a Bosman. I wouldn't mind seeing him back, but he's just too much like Bridges (and not as good) to buy at the moment.

February 21: Mark Jackson's brief sojourn at Bristol ended today - they were interested, but he's not quite right for them and on too much money!

February 21: Next Saturday's must-win visit to the Riverside will be hit by a nightmare set of suspensions that remove the whole right side of the squad: Eirik Bakke, Gary Kelly and Matthew Jones all miss out, giving chances to David Hopkin, Danny Mills and Darren Huckerby no doubt.

February 21: Since they both missed yesterday's game, it's no surprise that both Michael Bridges and Stephen McPhail have withdrawn from the England U-21 and Republic of Ireland squads for this week's friendlies. That just leaves 5 Leeds players for us to support at Craven Cottage tomorrow night - see you there!

February 20: Derek Lilley got a late winner for Oxford yesterday as they dragged themselves out of the relegation zone in Division 2 with a 2-1 win over Chesterfield.

February 20: Reports from Brazil that Leeds are very interested in Gremio's young striker Ronaldinho Gaucho have been denied by Leeds, despite the statements attributed to Gremio's chairman at the weekend. The 19-year-old is valued - by his current employers - at nearly £20 million, which is a bit OTT for us, even with our war chest. Random speculation also links us with Venezia's Filippo Maniero.

February 20: Needless to say I'm not happy about the result and think we merited a draw, but what can you say. One slip by Lucas Radebe, a storming performance from Mark Bosnich and a gut-wrenching miss by Lee Bowyer and we're now 6 points adrift. More worrying is that we're starting to get perilously close to 3rd - or even 4th - place, and that's something we've got to avoid.

February 19: Right - time to grab the train up to Leeds for a night's preparation for the big game: match stats and report will appear when I get back on Sunday.

February 19: DOL recanted his defence of Lee Bowyer's challenge on Stephen Clemence last week. Having seen the replay - which he hadn't at the time of the original comment - he made it clear that he couldn't have complained if Bowyer had been sent off. What he didn't take back was his well-founded criticism of Spurs' inability to stay on their feet (and - my view - willingness to hack, dive and argue their way through a game they knew they couldn't win).

February 19: Alex Ferguson said that tomorrow's game would be "significant" rather than "decisive" in the struggle for the title. Certainly a win for Man U would put them in pole position - 6 points clear with a better goal difference - but with 13 games still to play, a couple of off-days could change it all around. He also called on the police to act to protect his players from the "hostility" they encounter at Elland Road. We look forward to him making the same request to the Greater Manchester Police Force when we next visit Old Trafford.

February 18: Mark Jackson's long search for a team has taken him to Bristol Rovers. He played in their midweek reserve game against Reading and will be hoping for a loan or permanent move to finally get back to first team football.

February 18: Sunday injury update (part 38). Lucas Radebe is the latest doubt, with worries over whether he's recovered from his badly bruised leg. If he's out, and with Michael Duberry suspended and Martin Hiden and Robert Molenaar still not back from injury, we could see Danny Mills or Alfi Haaland in at centreback. A bit worrying considering who we're playing...

February 18: David O'Leary was in France on Wednesday night watching former Everton midfielder Olivier Dacourt. Newcastle are also apparently interested, but would be more likely to go for a swap deal that got rid of one or more of their listed players. Can't remember much about Dacourt from his short time at Everton - but he went for £6.5 million, so someone rates him...

February 17: Speaking of Peter Ridsdale, the Leeds head man appears to be in a two-horse race with Arsenal's David Dein for a position as vice-chairman of the FA. The Premier League club chairmen will vote on this shortly - but Dein has been strenuously campaigning for the position and stressing his long personal involvement with the FA over 15 or more years. Bearing in mind how forward-looking and positive the FA has been in that time, it's hard to see how that's viewed as an advantage....

February 17: Leeds will request a personal hearing for the FA charge against the club after last Saturday's incidents. Without wanting to stoke the fires before Sunday's game, Peter Ridsdale has noted publicly that Man U appear to have escaped censure despite their equally serious - and repeated - breaches of discipline.

February 17: It's rewind time. It now looks as if Dwight Yorke will play on Sunday. Man U seem to have gone over the head of the Trinidad and Tobago team manager and somehow persuaded their Football Association to release Yorke - even though he was due to be playing in the quarter-finals of the North American equivalent of the African Nations Cup. So can we now just step back in time or request a replay of the games that Lucas Radebe missed while on international duty? Ah no - sorry - I forgot. Like every other club in the world bar one, we're not as important as the national sides.

February 17: To nobody's great surprise, David Batty pulled out of this afternoon's practice match against Halifax at Thorp Arch. David Hopkin did play - and scored - and must now be considered a racing certainty to start on Sunday. Meanwhile, Michael Bridges' chances of starting are being played down, with his twisted ankle continuing to cause him problems.

February 17: Nigel Martyn and Jason Wilcox are included in Kevin Keegan's squad for the friendly against Argentina next Wednesday. Despite Wilcox's limited number of appearances, it would seem that he's forced his way into the reckoning by virtue of (a) having a left foot and (b) being fit. Nige would still appear to be number 2 to David Seaman, who - last week's game against Liverpool apart - has not been pulling off the match-turning saves he used to.

February 16: Ryan Giggs played down the prospect of Sunday's game being a violent clash between the two teams, after events of recent weeks. He pointed out that there was always a lot at stake and a lot of pride involved in the fixture, but there hadn't been any real on-field problems in recent fixtures. Sensible words from one of the few players at OT (Dennis Irwin is another one) that I've always found it hard to hate. For some reason he seems to be immune to the Whinge Virus that infects the playing and coaching staff as soon as they walk through the door.

February 16: Australia's national coach Frank Farina would like to see Harry Kewell and Mark Bosnich turn out for the national side in a friendly against Hungary next week - but sounded a realistic note when he mentioned the tough game both will be involved in at the weekend. He'd also do well to remember that Harry is carrying an injury after being scythed down by Chris Perry last Saturday, so could do with not playing non-essential games.

February 16: A Leeds reserve side should be lining up to face Halifax tomorrow behind closed doors. This might give David Batty a chance to sharpen up, but will also prove useful for young strikers Lee Matthews and Tony Hackworth - both on the comeback trail - and David Hopkin and Alfi Haaland who could be pushing for places in what might be a slightly defensive squad at the weekend.

February 16: There are six Leeds players in the U-21 squad for next week's friendly against Argentina at Craven Cottage. Paul Robinson, Michael Bridges, Alan Smith and Danny Mills are joined by the still-under-a-cloud pair of Lee Bowyer and Jon Woodgate - the England set-up obviously playing the same straight bat as DOL on this sort of thing.

February 16: Mind games and Sunday rumours (part 17): Dwight Yorke might now miss Sunday's game after Trinidad and Tobago pulled off a 4-2 win over Guatemala and might go further. But what about the occupants of the Leeds treatment room? In order of decreasing likelihood of appearance, we have Radebe, Kewell, Bridges, McPhail and Batty - but DOL is just doing what we normally get from Fergie in creating a big smokescreen. Speaking of whom, what a pleasant surprise to hear that Mr Ferguson is in favour of having an unbiased and upright referee in charge of the game. Since he manages the side that a recent statistical survey showed received more favourable refereeing decisions than any other, that's a big sacrifice for him to make and we are, of course, grateful.

February 15: The Youth team drew 1-1 at Highbury tonight in the quarter-finals of the FA Youth Cup: the replay will be at Elland Road in two weeks.

February 15: Harry Kewell has joined the ever-growing injury list after picking up a whack on the ankle from Spurs' Chris Perry on Saturday. Harry is undergoing extensive treatment and hopes to be fit for Sunday.

February 15: The reserves beat Barnsley 2-1 last night with a 1st-half goal from Simon Watson and a last-minute winner from David Hopkin - now available again after a 3-match ban from first-team games.

February 15: Eirik Bakke has been called up to the Norway team for their friendly against Turkey on February 23.

February 14: The FA are interested in reviewing the footage from the handbag-swinging contest that broke out between the players at Elland Road on Saturday. The good old FA, sending out the right messages as always: you can surround the ref with half a dozen pushing screaming thugs twice in a fortnight and get away with it - or you can have a 30-second flare-up between players and get investigated. One rule for us, another for a certain team from over the Pennines.

February 14: Lucas looks like he'll make it for next Sunday's game - he's just got a badly bruised shin and is receiving treatment. For Batts it's less certain - he misses tonight's reserve game against Barnsley - maybe he's just taking it easy on the way back rather than rushing it and getting injured again.

February 12: Lucas Radebe was substituted after half-time in South Africa's win over Tunisia in the 3rd place play-off game of the African Nations Cup. Hopefully it's nothing too serious, but it does raise some doubts over his fitness for the big match next week.

February 12: A scrappy game with few chances at either end, but dominated by Leeds in possession terms, and by ref Dermot Gallagher who was a little over-zealous, but fairly even-handed all the same. Well taken goal from Harry, Nige never had a save to make, and the defence looked pretty solid in the face of a toothless attack. With Man U losing at Newcastle, that brings the gap back down to 3 points and turns up the temperature on next Sunday's game even more....

February 11: Mike Reed was today reprimanded by the Premier League over his actions and subsequent comments in last week's game at Anfield. Reed has also been switched from reffing a high-profile TV game as a punishment - though some on the disciplinary board wanted to ban him for 3 matches. Although he was supported by several current and former refs - and Peter Ridsdale made a point of stating that his performance had no impact on the result - there are clearly some in the football hierarchy who are taking their chances to hit back at such a high-profile individual.

February 11: Former Leeds striker Bobby Davison has offered to resign as manager of Guiseley Town after a recent plunge in form has left them dicing with relegation. His strike force includes Tony Agana - who appeared in a grand total of 2 games for Leeds (though somewhat more for Sheff U), but Agana's experience has been missing recently as the big striker has been carrying an injury.

February 11: Corrections and clarifications department. The practice game at Thorp Arch yesterday was against Huddersfield, not Sheffield United as was first reported. And South Africa are now saying that Lucas will be required for the 3rd place play-off, so he won't be back for Saturday's game.

February 10: Stephen McPhail, Ian Harte and Gary Kelly are all in the Ireland squad for the friendly against the Czech Republic on February 23.

February 10: A bizarre spat between Leeds and soon-to-be-ousted kit supplier Puma came to light today. Several of the first team shirts are looking a bit tatty with the logos starting to peel away. Leeds are saying that they've tried to get Puma to replace them, and Puma, not too unreasonably, have pointed out that Leeds might just find the odd spare shirt in the club shop. Of course it does rather question either the quality and durability of the merchandise, or possibly the laundry techniques used on the shirts - I can't see modern shirt fabrics standing up to being bashed against the stones on the banks of the River Aire....

February 10: The Super Eagles of Nigeria proved too strong for Lucas Radebe's South African team, winning 2-0 to book a place in the final against Cameroon. On the positive side, it's looking like Lucas might actually be available for the Spurs game on Saturday.

February 10: Negotiations between Leeds and Man City over the transfer of Alfi Haaland are continuing. Joe Royle is keen to boost his promotion-chasing squad, but is a bit strapped for cash, and Leeds will probably be looking for at least £500,000 if not more for the player signed for £1.6 million from Forest, but who has been out of favour under DOL. In other transfer news, Neil Warnock has listed the injury-prone Bruno Ribeiro at Sheffield United. His knee has played up since his move and he's now seen as surplus to requirements at Bramall Lane.

February 10: David Batty came through a sizeable chunk of the practice match against Sheffield United this afternoon with no ill effects - maybe he's finally turned the corner.

February 10: Matthew Jones was called up into the Wales squad for the upcoming friendly against Qatar. Jones received his first cap last year and will be hoping for another outing for the national side to stake his claim to a place ahead of the qualifiers for WC 2002.

February 09: The next round of the FA Youth Cup will be played at Highbury on Tuesday 15th February. Kick-off will be at 1900 and I guess I don't have many excuses for not getting off the Tube a few stops early for once - see you there!

February 09: A training ground knock from Jon Woodgate looks certain to keep Michael Bridges out of Saturday's game against Spurs - and he could also miss the Man U game the following week. On a more positive note, David Batty will take the field in a private training game against Sheffield United tomorrow night, and will also be looking to make an appearance against Barnsley in the reserve fixture next Monday.

February 08: A goal from Simon Johnson - who is hotly tipped for the future - took the Youth Team through to the next round of the FA Youth Cup. The youngsters beat Wimbledon 1-0 at Elland Road tonight and will now take on Arsenal in the next round.

February 08: Now there's a surprise. Dwight Yorke will be released by Trinidad so that he can play for Man U at Elland Road, despite the fact that it's being played on the day after the Gold Cup finishes. Rumours that a certain Lancashire team have offered to host a game between England and Norway U-21s on that date would I'm sure be strenously denied if they were to circulate.

February 08: The Mike Reed row continues to occupy the column inches, with the Premier League asking Reed for a written explanation of his gestures on Saturday and pointing out that it isn't advisable for refs to be seen displaying their emotions like that. To be fair to Reed, both Peter Ridsdale and Supporters Club officials Eric Carlisle and Ray Fell have pointed out that Reed's decisions played no real part in Leeds' defeat at the weekend.

February 08: A few interesting - and possibly related - facts: JFH is signed for Leeds by GG. GG sods off for more money in his back pocket, while claiming that Leeds never gave him any money to spend. JFH whinges his way out of Elland Road, and turns up at a club that everyone knows is in financial trouble. JFH scores a few goals then complains he's not been paid what he's due. GG is linked with signing JFH. Your starters for 10: what happens next and who gets paid what in "commission"?

February 08: The Anti-Nazi League are threatening to organise a demonstration at the Spurs game against Saturday, insisting that the - currently - innocent players involved in the attack on Sarfraz Najeib are not picked for the game. I'm sure that if we dropped them and they were subsequently cleared, the ANL would be more than happy to picket the Football Association and get the games in question replayed.

February 07: The 80th anniversary dinner held at the weekend saw a panel including Peter Ridsdale, Jimmy Armfield and Don Warters pick their all-time greatest Leeds team. The squad they chose was: Nigel Martyn, Paul Reaney, Jack Charlton, Norman Hunter, Terry Cooper, Peter Lorimer, Billy Bremner, Johnny Giles, Harry Kewell, Allan Clarke and John Charles, with subs Paul Madeley, Tony Currie and David Harvey. Forgive me for saying so, but this is rather reminiscent of radio stations' end of year "greatest record of all time" polls, where recent tracks occupy a disproportionate number of places.

February 07: Michael Duberry's booking at the weekend will see him suspended for the Man U game - but fortunately Lucas Radebe will be back for that one. South Africa beat Ghana 1-0 in the quarter-finals of the African Nations Cup and will now play Nigeria or Senegal in the semis.

February 07: Ref Mike Reed today explained that the reason he punched the air in delight at Liverpool's second goal was that he was happy that they'd scored as a result of him playing an advantage. There is a school of thought that would question that explanation - particularly when his recent performances in Leeds games are scrutinised, but I'm sure that he bears us no more malice than any other team.

February 07: The last 3,000 tickets for the Man U game went on sale at 9 a.m. yesterday - and numerous fans queued through the night to get them. Almost reminiscent of the championship days when several thousand went straight from the clubs on Saturday night to Elland Road on Sunday morning to queue up for tickets for those last few games...

February 07: DOL and Eddie Gray went out on a spying mission on UEFA Cup opponents Roma on Sunday - and probably came away more than a bit shaken as they destroyed Venezia 5-0. Meanwhile he needs to reorganise the team and bring in some more solidity to the midfield before Saturday's game against Spurs. GG's mob might be missing Stefan Iversen after he went off at the weekend with an injury - but as our performances against Arsenal, Villa and Liverpool have shown, lack of a recognised striker is not an obstacle to beating us.

February 06: DOL has said that he'd be happy to take JFH back - on a free and provided he wasn't asking too much in wages. I believe that's known as a qualified no....

February 06: Harry Kewell's agent continues to stir the pot as he comments today that Harry is already thinking about his long-term future and might be ready to make his intentions clear in "about 18 months time". Kewell - who is on a 4 year contract - cost Leeds nothing to buy (but Leeds have made a considerable investment in his development and retention) and could easily go for £20 million in today's market. But who would replace him? And where would we be prepared to sell him to? If we are serious about long-term success, then we certainly can't let him go to an English club - but even Juve or Inter should be viewed as our real competition if we have any ambition for the future.

February 06: Rod Wallace's 10th goal of the season - and his second header in a week - helped Rangers to a 2-2 draw with Hibs at Easter Road tonight.

February 05: DOL insisted that there was still an outside chance of winning the title - but clearly thinks that Man U are close to having it wrapped up. "Anyone who finishes above them will be champions" - he said.

February 05: Leeds are trying to make sure their young stars stay on the straight and narrow by putting them on a PFA course designed to teach them how to handle celebrity, deal with the press and avoid drug and alcohol problems. It is not clear if Jon Woodgate and Lee Bowyer have attended the course...

February 05: A deflected free kick from Dietmar Hamman gave Liverpool the lead in the first half at Anfield. Leeds survived a couple more scares, but only one chance - from Harry Kewell - came close to troubling Westerveld's goal before half-time. It wasn't totally against the run of play when Lee Bowyer equalised in the 2nd half but Liverpool deserved the win that Berger's goal gave them, and Murphy's injury-time strike probably made the scoreline reflect the play.

February 04: JFH has indicated he'd like to come back to England, since it would appear that he's in dispute with Athletico (over cash, apparently). He's scored 20-odd goals this season, but the club are still not doing that well - but if he still wants sixty grand a week he'll be hard pressed to find a home at Elland Road. Chelsea maybe....

February 04: After a recent rush, tickets to the Man U game will now only be sold to personal callers at Elland Road. Good job I've got a season ticket cos it's a long way from London to pick one up if I didn't...

February 04: David Batty is now almost certain to miss the Man U game in 2 weeks time, having already definitely ruled himself out of the Liverpool and Spurs games. DOL will probably pick an unchanged side at Anfield tomorrow, with stand-in captain Gary Kelly warning Liverpool that Leeds have consistently managed to bounce back from poor performances with a win this season.

February 04: Good PR department: Peter Ridsdale was judging a competition on a local radio station where the winners could win up to £1,000. When one of the entrants said that she'd spend the money following Leeds in Europe, the chairman put his hand in his own pocket to offer her a trip out to Rome for the UEFA Cup game in March.

February 03: The squad were forced to sit through a video nasty today - a rerun of the game against Villa. Nigel Martyn - who was at fault for the second goal - said that only Ian Harte escaped with his feelings and reputation intact.

February 03: Lucas Radebe and the South African team drew their final group game and now look forward to the quarter finals of the African Nations Cup.

February 03: Three men - from Walsall, Middlesbrough and North Yorkshire - were today arrested in connection with the assault on Sarfraz Najeib in Leeds city centre. No charges have yet been brought.

February 02: That giant among men - Rod Wallace - popped up with a header to help Rangers to a 4-0 win over Dundee United in tonight's SPL game.

February 02: David Batty is getting increasingly frustrated with his long-standing injury. He knows it will take him a while to regain full fitness and he reckons he'll need a couple of reserve games before he's ready for the first team. All of which rather points to the fact that he's unlikely to be ready in time to face Man U on February 20 - I guess aiming to be back for the UEFA Cup games must now be the target.

February 02: Jason Wilcox will not be available for the away leg of the UEFA Cup tie with Roma in March. He was sent off the last time Blackburn were in Europe (quite a while ago then) and has a one-match ban to serve.

February 02: The reserves beat Sunderland 1-0 last at Elland Road last night with a goal from Darren Huckerby. Matthew Jones had a particularly good game, and David Robertson and Martin Hiden both continued their comebacks from injury, but Robert Molenaar rested a slight hamstring strain rather than force things at this stage of his recovery.

February 01: The 5th round of the FA Youth Cup against Wimbledon will now be played next Tuesday night - so the reserve game against Newcastle scheduled for that night is now postponed.

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