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O’Neill Rules Out Return to Leicester, Guardian Says: Roundup

The following is a roundup of soccer stories from U.K. newspapers, with clickable links to the Web.

No Leicester Return

Martin O’Neill has ruled out a return as Leicester City manager after deciding it would be a mistake to go back to a club where he enjoyed five years of success, the Guardian said.

O’Neill was giving serious consideration to finding out more about the club’s potential after Sven-Goran Eriksson was fired three days ago, the Guardian said.

Leicester Vice Chairman Aiyawatt Raksriaksorn said he wants to hire a manager who will not only take the club to the Premier League, but also knows the second-tier Championship. That would seem to rule out Mark Hughes and Paul Ince, who’ve been linked with the post, the Guardian said.

Terry Racism Row

Chelsea defender Ashley Cole will tell the Football Association he didn’t hear teammate John Terry make any racist comments to QPR’s Anton Ferdinand, the Sun said.

QPR made a complaint to the F.A. alleging the England captain made the insult to one of its players during a match four days ago, a claim Terry has denied. Cole is expected to be called as a witness in an F.A. investigation because TV footage showed him walking past Terry at the time of the alleged incident, the Sun said.

Terry tried to contact Ferdinand, and his brother Rio, but both have refused to take his calls, the Daily Mail said. England manager Fabio Capello is ready to pick both Terry and Rio Ferdinand for exhibition matches against Spain and Sweden next month, the Daily Mirror said.

Half-Price Tevez

Brazilian club Corinthians is ready to make a bid for Carlos Tevez of less than half the 40 million pounds ($64 million) it was prepared to pay in the summer, the Mirror said.

Corinthians now values Tevez at only 18 million pounds because of the striker’s dispute with his club, the newspaper said. Tevez was fined four weeks after City upheld a charge of misconduct for refusing to enter the field as a substitute during a Champions League game at Bayern Munich last month.

The Mirror cited Corinthians President Andres Sanchez as saying his fans “can’t imagine how close Tevez is.”

Toure Battle

Manchester City’s Kolo Toure plans to contest any potential punishment the club hands him over his six-month suspension for a failed drug test, the Independent said.

Toure will appear before a club disciplinary board next week as City tries to determine whether to fine the player for his prolonged absence, the Independent said. Toure was suspended in May for the failed test, which resulted from him taking his wife’s diet pills without permission of club doctors.

New Sidibe Injury

Stoke striker Mamady Sidibe’s career is in jeopardy after he suffering a suspected dislocated knee in a reserve game, the Sun said.

Sidibe, 31, had just returned after twice tearing his Achilles tendon, the Sun said.

Smith Loan

Newcastle wants to send Alan Smith out on loan and has alerted clubs to the midfielder’s availability, the Mirror reported.

Smith, who turns 31 tomorrow, is in the final year of a 60,000 pounds a week contract, the newspaper said. He has made only one appearance as a substitute this season.

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