French side RC Lens have loaned Senegalese international Pape Sarr to Spanish Segunda División side Deportivo Alavés for the next five months. The 27-year-old midfield player has appeared once this season for the Ligue 1 club - coming on 87 minutes into November's game at FC Sochaux-Montbéliard and scoring a last-gasp winner in a 2-1 victory - but he has not made himself part of coach Joël Muller's plans. Alavés do not have the option to buy Sarr, part of the Senegal squad that reached the second round of the 2002 FIFA World Cup, and he is contracted to Lens until June 2006.
Vladimir Ivic is leaving VfL Borussia Mönchengladbach after only six months at the club. The player and the German club agreed to terminate his contract today. The 27-year-old played just four times this season, scoring once, and asked to leave because he believed he had no future at Mönchengladbach. Later on Tuesday, Greece's AEK Athens FC announced that Ivic had signed a three-year contract with the Athens side. Ivic's brother Ilija is AEK's technical director.
Yury Kulish has replaced Victor Barisev as coach of Moldovan club FC Tiraspol after an "extremely unsatisfactory" start to the season, the club's board have announced. Tiraspol currently lie sixth in the eight-team First Division at the winter break, and along with the arrival of the 41-year-old Ukrainian, who came to prominence with his work at FC Sheriff reserves, seven players have been transfer-listed including former Moldovan internationals Serghey Belous and Ruslan Barburos.
Serghey Podpaly has stepped down as coach of Belarussian side FC Torpedo-SKA Minsk to move to Russian third division team FC Nosta Novotroitsk along with assistants Oleg Samatov and Aleksandr Shkaruba. The Russian coach previously led FC Gomel to the 2002 Belarussian Cup and league title the following year, but only finished sixth this season with Torpedo-SKA. His successor has not yet been named.
On a day of coaching changes, Paul Hegarty had resigned as player-manager of Northern Irish Premier Division club Institute FC, who currently lie eighth in the 16-team league. The 37-year-old said: "The club is not in the position I had hoped it would be at this stage of the season. I had set a target of qualifying for Europe." Chairman Bily Smallwoods said: "We are disappointed and saddened that Paul has come to this decision." Hegarty's assistant John Quigg has taken temporary charge.
Lithuanian international Auri Skarbalius is leaving Danish Superliga leaders Brøndby IF to join struggling Herfølge BK on an 18-month loan deal. The 31-year-old defender, who has not been a regular in Michael Laudrup's starting lineup, has played 190 league matches for Brøndby and 60 internationals for Lithuania. "I have never made a secret of the fact that I want to play 90 minutes of every game, and therefore I am extremely happy for the efforts Brøndby have made to make it possible for me to play at Herfølge," said Skarbalius.
Sochaux's Swiss midfield player Johann Lonfat is doubtful for his side's last game of the autumn - a League Cup tie against SM Caen - after breaking his nose in Sunday's 2-2 league draw at FC Nantes Atlantique. Doctors diagnosed the fracture on Monday.
Alon Mizrahi has agreed to return to Hapoel Beer-Sheva FC after failing to settle in at Bnei Yehuda Tel-Aviv FC. Israel's all-time top scorer left Beer-Sheva in October, having scored four goals for the club but, after failing to find the target at Bnei Yehuda, has agreed to return to Beer-Sheva.
SBV Vitesse have signed attacking midfield player Youssouf Hersi from SC Heerenveen. The 22-year-old, whose first-team opportunities have been limited at Heerenveen, has signed a contract until summer 2007.
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