No Hatters move for Gazza

Last updated : 11 June 2003 By Martyn Elliott

The former Newcastle star failed to return to China on time after the government gave permission for the league to resume after the threat posed by the SARS virus receded.

Press reports in the North West had suggested that Gazza was about to link up with his former England team-mate Carlton Palmer at Stockport, but Gansu Tianma officials claim that the player is on his way back to China.

"Gazza's agent has contacted him on Monday after receiving the club's call," Tianma general manager Zhang Tongpo told Chinese government news agency Xinhua.

"We were told that Gazza has no intention to leave the club. He is certain to come back."