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Last Updated: Friday, 5 March, 2004, 03:48 GMT
The gossip column
All the latest football talk from Friday's newspapers

Most of the front and back pages report on the allegations of sexual assault surrounding several high-profile Leicester City players.

The Daily Mail headlines the "shaming of soccer (cont.)" while The Independent writes, "pampered players defraud fans."

Away from the the details of the scandal engulfing the struggling Premiership side, many papers suggest that manager Micky Adams will question his future at the Walkers Stadium.

The Daily Mirror writes, "Adams in crisis as he fights for Leicester's Premiership survival," while the Daily Express asks,"does he have the respect of his players, or are Leicester spinning out of control?"

Elsewhere, Liverpool striker Michael Owen admits that he has also received a series of death threats similar to those sent to Anfield boss Gerard Houllier (Daily Star, The Sun, The Daily Telegraph).

Manchester United striker Ruud van Nistelrooy heaped more woe on boss Sir Alex Ferguson by telling him he was unhappy being rested last weekend.

The Dutch ace told friends he was "surprised and disappointed" not to make the trip to Fulham. (Daily Mirror, Daily Express).

Meanwhile, Ferguson hopes new assistant manager Walter Smith will help restore some discipline to the United squad (Daily Mirror).

Leeds strike duo Mark Viduka and Alan Smith insist they will not leave even if the club is relegated to Division One (Daily Mirror).

Former England and Tottenham manager Glenn Hoddle has been offered the job as South Africa's coach (Daily Express).

Chelsea boss Claudio Ranieri wants to offer England midfielder Frank Lampard a new five-year deal worth 70,000 a week (The Sun).

Brazilian legend Pele has come under fire for his list of Fifa's top 100 players - which includes El Hadji Diouf and Juan Sebastien Veron (The Daily Telegraph, Daily Mail).

Sheffield Wednesday chairman Dave Allen has told Ken Bates he can buy the club for 30m or stop stringing the club along (The Sun).

Chelsea winger Joe Cole has taken steps to improve his kicking skills by taking tips from Dave Alred - the man who helped coach England rugby ace Jonny Wilkinson (The Sun).





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