Twente being lined up as replacements

By Derek DavisDUTCH side Twente Enschede are being lined up as possible friendly opponents if the proposed match with Athletic Bilbao falls through.Disruption at managerial and presidential level at the Basque club has left the Blues uncertain whether the game scheduled for Friday, August 1, will go ahead.

By Derek Davis

DUTCH side Twente Enschede are being lined up as possible friendly opponents if the proposed match with Athletic Bilbao falls through.

Disruption at managerial and presidential level at the Basque club has left the Blues uncertain whether the game scheduled for Friday, August 1, will go ahead.

The teams have agreed details but the contract has still to be signed by Spanish officials and sent back to Portman Road.


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If the game falls through then Town will be left without a home game before their season opener against Reading on August 9.

They will instead travel to the east Netherlands to meet Twente at the Arke Stadion on Saturday, August 2.

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Meanwhile, Bilbao have appointed a new coach and a new chairman as the Blues continue to wait for confirmation with the Spanish side.

Ernesto Valverde has been promoted from youth-team coach to replace Jupp Heyncke, who has moved to Schalke 04, while Ignacio Ugaletxe has been named president to take over from Javier Uria, who died of cancer, aged 41, last week.

Two club directors have stood down, citing personal and work reasons, respectively.

The newly-appointed Ugaletxe admits moving Vlaverde into the top coaching job at the Basque club is something of a gamble and but is confident he will help Bilbao improve on last season's seventh-place finish in La Liga, where they missed out on an UEFA Cup place to Barcelona on the final day.

Bilbao are due to play Ipswich on Friday and travel to Stoke City the following day for another friendly.

n FK Sartid, beaten by Ipswich Town in the UEFA Cup last season thanks to a Marcus Bent penalty, have appointed Ralko Dastanic as their new coach after parting company with Javico Skori.

The club from the small town of Smederevo qualified for this season's UEFA Cup after beating Crevna Zvezda (formerly known as Red Star Begrade) in the Serbia-Montenegro Cup final to win their first-ever trophy.

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