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General Category => Archive => Daily Fulham Stuff => Topic started by: whitejc on May 26, 2010, 07:30:20 AM

Title: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (26/05/10)...
Post by: whitejc on May 26, 2010, 07:30:20 AM (
Fulham - Duff is the Key!
As the internationals bring down the curtain on a season whereby the World Cup will bring the ultimate finale, tonight gives us a chance to watch Damien Duff perform for the Republic of Ireland.

The Irish entertain Paraguay tonight, with their manager, the legendary Italian Trapattoni giving Damien a glowing reference, commenting,

"I monitored Damien a lot this year and we pray to God that he doesn`t get injured because, like Robbie Keane, Kevin Doyle and three or four others he is very important to us."

But, with Damien having played an incredible 52 games this season, the wily Italian is aware of the need to treat him carefully and added,

"I will look out for him tonight and when it is possible I will give him a rest."

Duff, who in my opinion was our outstanding buy last season, also received an acknowledgment for his performance in the Nordbank Arena, in the Europa League final, with Trapattoni, explaining,

"In the Europa League final he was fantastic, one of the best players on the pitch, and I hope he keeps that mentality."

"Since he arrived in for training, he doesn`t look like a player finishing up the season. He has been enthusiastic and isn`t showing that he`s under-performing, injured or tired."

And to think there was this humble editor thinking Roy had made a mistake, in the transfer market, when he lured him south from Newcastle, it just goes to show how wrong you can be!
Title: Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (26/05/10)...
Post by: whitejc on May 26, 2010, 07:34:15 AM,19528,11681_6172043,00.html? (,19528,11681_6172043,00.html?)
Rovers agree Brown deal
Young Fulham midfielder set to sign with Pirates

Bristol Rovers have agreed a deal to sign young Fulham midfielder Wayne Brown.

The 21-year-old, who spent a spell on loan with Rovers at the end of the season, is set to sign a two-year contract with the League One club, subject to a medical.

Brown came through the Fulham academy but only made two first-team appearances for the Premier League outfit, making his debut against Rovers in an FA Cup tie in January 2008.

He then spent loan spells with Brentford and Finnish side TPS Turku before impressing manager Paul Trollope in four league appearances for the Pirates in February and March.

"We have agreed terms on a two-year contract with Wayne, which we are very pleased about," Trollope told the club's official website.

Good impact

"Wayne made a good impact in his brief spell with us but unfortunately that was halted by injury.

"However, he showed in his appearances and in his training within the group that he fitted in with how we did things and what we expect from a player in terms of his quality and his attitude.

"I think he was keen to get back to us as well and we've managed to do the deal."

Brown was named the Finnish league's player of the season following his spell with TPS Turku in 2009 and showed he had an eye for goal, scoring nine goals in 25 appearances.

"I'm very much looking forward to working with him," Trollope added.

Real desire
"He's a young player who we feel we can develop and make good progress with. He has a real desire to get back to playing at a high level and hopefully he can do that with us.

"He's a very versatile player who can play in all positions across midfield, as well as off a single striker and he will bring us creativity as well as providing a goal threat from a midfield area."

Chairman Nick Higgs also confirmed that talks are ongoing with striker Paul Heffernan and defender Daniel Jones, who have been released by Doncaster and Wolves respectively.

Rovers are eager to boost their squad after falling away from the League One play-offs and ultimately finishing in mid-table.

"Hopefully this is the first of many signings this summer as we seek to shape and strengthen our squad for the 2010/11 season," Higgs added.
Title: Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (26/05/10)...
Post by: whitejc on May 26, 2010, 07:38:33 AM (
Fulham - Zamora Birmingham Link (2)
It`s a rumour that refuses to die, a rumour that causes me concern every time I stumble across it.

Several tabloids are persisting wit the implication that Birmingham City are keen on Bobby Zamora, even though the initial suggestion was that his salary was outside of what they`re prepared to pay.

I hoped it was a rumour that would die a natural death but just like the 'Zamora to Hull` ones of last summer, this one still gives me an uneasy feeling.

Perhaps I should seek comfort in the fact that Birmingham have others lined up to reinforce their attack, but viewing the names of Steven Fletcher (Burnley) and Kris Boyd (Glasgow Rangers) only fills me with further anxiety.

If you had to pick one out of the three, which one would you pursue with vigour?

Exactly! See where I`m coming from?
Title: Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (26/05/10)...
Post by: whitejc on May 26, 2010, 07:41:13 AM (
Arsenal eyeing Simon Kjaer, Pape Diakhate and shock move for Fulham goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer

Arsenal are still interested in Palermo's £10m-rated defender Simon Kjaer and Dinamo Kiev's Senegalese centre half Pape Diakhate.

Kjaer's agent, former Middlesbrough striker, Mikkel Beck said: 'I have encouraged him to try the Premier League.'

Gunners boss Arsene Wenger is also considering a move for Fulham's veteran goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer.
Title: Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (26/05/10)...
Post by: whitejc on May 26, 2010, 07:44:31 AM (
Bristol Rovers to sign Fulham midfielder Wayne Brown

Bristol Rovers have agreed to sign Fulham midfielder Wayne Brown on a free transfer, subject to a medical.
Brown, whose Fulham deal expires next month, arrived at the Memorial Stadium on loan in February and made his debut in the 5-0 defeat at Leyton Orient.

The 21-year-old made three starts and one substitute appearance.
"We have agreed terms on a two-year contract with Wayne, which we are very pleased about," Rovers manager Paul Trollope said.
"Wayne made a good impact in his brief spell with us but, unfortunately, that was halted by injury.
"However he showed, in his appearances and in his training within the group, that he fitted in with how we did things and what we expect from a player in terms of his quality and his attitude."
He has a real desire to get back to playing at a high level and hopefully he can do that with us
Bristol Rovers manager Paul Trollope
A graduate of the Fulham academy, Brown made his first-team debut against Rovers in an FA Cup third round replay in January 2008.

"He's a young player who we feel we can develop and make good progress with," added Trollope. "He has a real desire to get back to playing at a high level and hopefully he can do that with us."
The Rovers boss also confirmed that talks with Paul Heffernan and Daniel Jones are continuing, following their releases by Doncaster and Wolves respectively.
"Negotiations continue and we would like to tie them both up," he said. "We are hoping for further news on both players by the end of the week."
Title: Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (26/05/10)...
Post by: whitejc on May 26, 2010, 07:49:24 AM (
Wayne Brown leaves Fulham for Bristol Rovers

According to a BBC Sport article, Wayne Brown is leaving Fulham and joining Bristol Rovers. This story states that it is a free transfer. Brown is a 21 year old midfielder.

Wayne Brown went out on loan to Bristol Rovers in February for a month. He is graduate of the Fulham Academy. The article also states that he signed a 2 year contract with Bristol Rovers. This is subject to a medical.

Personally, I wish Fulham could keep all of their young players. That is definitely not realistic. I wish him the best of luck.
Title: Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (26/05/10)...
Post by: whitejc on May 26, 2010, 09:15:36 AM (
Fulham signed kit deal with Kappa

English Fulham Football Club has landed a deal with the European sportswear brand Kappa. Kappa will be the club's technical sponsor and official supplier of sportswear for the next three seasons and it will be taking over from Nike. The deal becomes effective from September's 2010-2011. Kappa has deals with AS Roma, Dortmund, Copenhagen, Valencia and Sampdoria. Fulham will be the only Premier League club being sponsored by the company next season.

New home and away kits will be unveiled in June and they will be in Fulham's traditional colours, black and white. The Omini Kappa logo of the male and female silhouttes with their back to each other will be incorporated into the design.

Chief executive of Fulham Football Club Alistair Mackintosh said that he is "delighted" with the arrangement and complimented Kappa as an "innovative, stylish and sophisticated sportswear brand" that "complement and embody the core values of Fulham". Fulham, under the chairmanship of millionaire Mohammed Al-Fayed, has steadily climbed the ranks from its position in League Two in the 1990s to become a Premier League club now. This year the club reached the Europa League final and lost to Hamburg's Atletico Madrid in extra time.

Chief executive of Kappa Simon Bamber said, "We are delighted to be associated with Fulham Football Club. Their unique positioning, style and heritage fit perfectly with our own ambitions. Also their recent success and the incredible energy that is part of the Craven Cottage experience makes us very excited to be part of the Clubs next chapter of their incredible journey."
Title: Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (26/05/10)...
Post by: whitejc on May 26, 2010, 09:16:53 AM (
Arsenal linked with Fulham keeper Mark Schwarzer
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has made Fulham goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer one of his priority targets in this summer's transfer window.

According to the Daily Mirror, Wenger had the Australian keeper scouted during Fulham's final two home games of the season.

Wenger has also reportedly cast his eye over AZ Alkmaar's Sergio Romero and Andre Pyatov of Shakhtar Donetsk, but he is not willing to pay over the odds and believes 37-year-old Shwarzer would provide Arsenal with better value for money.

Whatever happened to Arsene Wenger's typical Arsenal? Considering Shwarzer's age, Wenger feels he can sign the Aussie for a reasonable price, especially as he only has one year of his contract left to run at Craven Cottage.

The Mirror claims Arsenal are also tracking Dynamo Kiev defender Pape Diakhate, while Fran Merida has joined Atletico Madrid on a four-year contract.
Title: Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (26/05/10)...
Post by: whitejc on May 26, 2010, 09:20:28 AM (

Aston Villa striker John Carew could be on his way to Serie A, with both Fiorentina and Sampdoria interested. Villa could use the funds to splash out on Tottenham's Robbie Keane or Fulham's Bobby Zamora as a replacement for the Norwegian.
Full story: Daily Mirror
Title: Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (26/05/10)...
Post by: whitejc on May 26, 2010, 09:21:17 AM (
Australia star Schwarzer chomping at the bit for World Cup action

Veteran Australian goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer is thrilled to be preparing for his second World Cup.

The 37-year old Fulham custodian and the rest of the Socceroos squad left for South Africa this afternoon but before embarking, Schwarzer spoke of his excitement to again be competing in the world’s biggest sporting event following the success in Germany in 2006.

“If you don't get excited about days like today, you'll never get excited about football or in life in general," he said.

"It's the pinnacle of anyone's career, obviously having the fortunate position of being in the last World Cup and having that experience of what it was like, to knowing now what lies ahead to a degree ... I'm very very excited about it."

The Socceroos play warm-up matches against Denmark on June 1 and the USA on June 5, ahead of their opening World Cup match against Germany in Durban on June 13.
Title: Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (26/05/10)...
Post by: White Noise on May 26, 2010, 10:49:09 AM

Arsenal ready to make shock move for Fulham star

Published 23:00 25/05/10

By John Cross

Arsene Wenger is ready to turn to Fulham veteran Mark Schwarzer to solve his goalkeeper crisis.

MirrorFootball revealed on May 15 that Arsenal had scouted Schwarzer in Fulham's final two home games of the season.

And the 37-year-old has now moved up the pecking order after the Gunners were scared off other targets by sky high prices.

Arsenal have also looked at AZ Alkmaar's Sergio Romero and Shakhtar Donetsk keeper Andriy Pyatov but Wenger would rather stick with his current crop of keepers than pay over the odds for a new first choice.

But Wenger believes he may be able to get Schwarzer at a good price because of the Aussie international's age. He only has a one-year contract at Fulham and they may be willing to let him go.

Schwarzer would also be a good solution for Arsenal as Wenger does not want to sign a big-name who will block the progress of his emerging young keepers at the Emirates.

Arsenal have particularly high hopes for 20-year-old Polish Wojciech Szczesny, who spent last season on loan at Brentford and may be loaned out next year to a Championship club.

Wenger lost faith with Manuel Almunia at the end of last season and he missed the run-in, blaming a wrist injury. But Lukasz Fabianski's run of games ended in disaster after a string of mistakes.

Ironically, Schwarzer also made a mistake against Arsenal in Fulham's final game of the season as his blunder gifted the Gunners an opening goal in the Europa League finalists' defeat at the Emirates.

Arsenal have already brought in Marouane Chamakh on a Bosman-style free transfer from Bordeaux and, together with a new keeper, they also want a centre-half.

But they are definitely NOT interested in Fulham's Brede Hangeland. Wenger rates the giant Norwegian highly, but Hangeland is no longer on Arsenal's radar. But they are tracking Dynamo Kiev's Senegalese centre half Pape Diakhate.

Palermo's Danish defender Simon Kjaer is interesting several Premier League clubs but his £10m buy-out clause ends this month. William Gallas is set to quit the Gunners while Sol Campbell, 35, will sign a new one-year deal.
Title: Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (26/05/10)...
Post by: White Noise on May 26, 2010, 10:54:21 AM

Carew heading to Italy as Villa raise funds for Keane or Zamora - Exclusive

Published 23:00 25/05/10

By James Nursey
John Carew could be heading to Serie A this summer as Aston Villa seek to raise funds for new players.

Norwegian hitman Carew, 30, has just 12 months left on his contract at Villa Park.

And both Fiorentina and Sampdoria are keen on the strapping 6ft 4in frontman, who earns £52,000-a-week at Villa.

Carew is very popular with supporters after netting 52 goals in 122 games following a move from Lyon in January 2007.

But Villa have to sell-to-buy as owner Randy Lerner seeks to make the club more financially sustainable.

Now Carew could be offloaded as he will be a free agent next summer and has an uneasy relationship with boss Martin O'Neill.

The pair have had differences of opinion over how to treat Carew's back problems in the past.

Carew was also fined for controversially visiting a strip club in October 2008 the evening before a game.

Carew's probable exit could help fund moves for Spurs' Robbie Keane or Fulham's Bobby Zamora.

Carew, also fancied by Fenerbahce, has admirers in the Premier League but Villa would prefer to sell the marksman abroad so he doesn't return to haunt them.

Villa are Carew's seventh club and he had a spell in Italy before from September 2003 with Roma.
Title: Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (26/05/10)...
Post by: White Noise on May 26, 2010, 11:26:20 AM

Sigurdsson offered improved Reading FC contract

By Jonny Fordham

May 26, 2010

Gylfi Sigurdsson has been offered a new improved deal as Reading bid to warn off Premier League predators.

The 20-year-old attacking midfielder is in line to become one of the club’s top earners.

Manager Brian McDermott is looking to tie Sigurdsson down for another three seasons by offering him an extra year on his current deal.

The Reading Post also understands that Royals are keen to insert a minimum-fee release clause for their most prized asset, which is expected to be in excess of £5million.

McDermott said: “We are talking with Gylfi at the moment over doing something with his current deal.

“He’s still got two years to go on his current deal, so there is no worry there with us losing him like that. He’s yet to sign anything, but I’m hopeful we’ll get something sorted.”

Academy graduate Sigurdsson was Royals’ top scorer this season with 20 goals.

He also picked up the Post’s AHG Group sponsored player-of-the-season accolade as well as the club’s player-of-the-season trophy.

Sigurdsson told an Icelandic newspaper that he is more than happy to stay at Madejski Stadium, despite interest from Europa League runners-up Fulham and top-flight sides Bolton, Newcastle United, Wolves and West Bromwich Albion.

He said: “It’s nice to get the offer of another year at Reading.

“It’s a new and improved three-year contract. I like Reading and I’m not looking to move to another club at this point.  It is important to get to play rather than go and sit on the bench for another team.”

But Sigurdsson also revealed that he is ambitious to play at the highest level possible.

He added: “If I can keep up my form from last season then you never know, a big team could come into the picture.”

The midfielder is set to receive his first full international cap for Iceland on Saturday in a friendly against Andorra in Reykjavik, driving up his asking price even more.

McDermott said: “I would think he will get his first international cap this weekend.

“It’s not for me to pick the Iceland team, but Gylfi’s quality speaks for itself and he’s had a fantastic season at Reading.”
Title: Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (26/05/10)...
Post by: White Noise on May 26, 2010, 11:27:38 AM

Crewe Alex: Gradi cautious on Maynard windfall
by Gwyn Griffiths

CREWE could be in line for a £1m windfall from the sale of Bristol City striker Nicky Maynard – but manager Dario Gradi isn't counting his pennies just yet.

The Alex inserted a 20 per cent sell-on clause in the deal which saw Maynard join City for £2.25m in July 2008, and it could be about to bear fruit.

The 23-year-old is hot property after netting 20 Championship goals last term, with Europa League finalists Fulham reported to be preparing a £4.5m bid.

But Gradi cautioned: "I'll believe it when the cheque is in the post, although I think Nicky is better than some of the England strikers bound for South Africa.

"He has done what I thought he'd do at Bristol, even though it has taken a bit longer than I expected.

"In fact, it's a pity the World Cup is this year, otherwise I think he'd be knocking on the door."

Black Country rivals Wolves and newly-promoted West Brom have also been linked with Maynard, although City chairman Steve Lansdown insists new Robins boss Steve Coppell doesn't have to sell.

But any future Maynard cash would be a welcome boost for Crewe, even though their immediate financial future has been secured by the £1m sale of John Brayford and James Bailey to Derby last week.
Title: Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (26/05/10)...
Post by: whitejc on May 26, 2010, 11:55:01 AM (
Nikola Zigic to opt for Birmingham transfer ahead of Everton and Fulham

Serbia striker Nikola Zigic is on the verge of joining Birmingham after turning down Everton and Fulham and flying in for a medical at St Andrews this week.

The 6ft 8ins Valencia forward has been on Blues boss Alex McLeish's radar for some time and reports suggest he is undergoing tests ahead of a deal worth in the region of £6million between the clubs.

McLeish had been linked with several strikers in recent weeks including West Ham's Carlton Cole and Fulham's Bobby Zamora.

The Scot is maintaining his policy of not commenting on potential signings until any deal has been completed, although he confirmed bids have been put in for players.

Sources close to Blues indicated the Midlands club are 'further down the line than anybody' in the race to sign the giant 29-year-old, who has been linked at various times with a host of Premier League clubs including Blackburn, Sunderland, Aston Villa, Fulham, and Everton.

But McLeish said only: 'There are irons in the fire. We've been linked with one or two players, we have put in bids for players.

'It would be unfair of me to talk about names at the moment. It would be unfair to the clubs and also to the fans if things don't happen.

'But I think they will be excited about one or two of the names we are pursuing and what we are trying to add to the squad is players of quality.'

Zigic has been tipped by Serbian coach Raddy Antic to be one of the stars of the forthcoming World Cup and he has netted 16 times in 42 internationals.

He initially made his name at Red Star Belgrade with 71 goals in 110 games before moving to Racing Santander.

A £15million switch to Valencia three years ago has not been successful as Zigic would have hoped and he even returned to Santander for a loan spell at one stage.

Last season he scored nine goals in 28 games for Valencia but David Villa was often preferred as the lone striker before his move to Barcelona

Title: Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (26/05/10)...
Post by: whitejc on May 26, 2010, 11:57:44 AM (
More Than A Game
Wednesday 26th May 2010
Football Fan Hopes Legacy of Bobby Moore Will Help Knock Leeds United Off Top Spot!
The Bobby Moore Fund for Cancer Research UK has put its weight behind the release of a new single by football fan Andy Duerden in a bid to stop the Leeds United squad from the 1970s taking number one spot in the charts.

The Fund, which was set up in memory of the England World Cup hero after he died from bowel cancer in 1993, will benefit from every download of More Than A Game, a rousing salute to football fans everywhere, taken from Andy’s new album Masterpiece. Thirty pence from every download will be donated to the Fund and will go towards vital research into bowel cancer.

In what must be one of the most unlikely battles in pop chart history, football fans from Bobby Moore’s former clubs West Ham United and Fulham, as well as those of Andy’s home town team Burnley, are being urged to download the track in their thousands. Meanwhile fans of Leeds United are being asked to put their money behind Marching On Together, a chant originally recorded by the legendary Leeds team of the 1970s.

The contrast in styles could not be greater. Andy Duerden is a law graduate and classically trained professional musician and music teacher who has worked on West End theatre productions and with orchestras and show bands. The Leeds team of the ‘70s was renowned for incredible team spirit, hard tackling and living life to the full! 

Andy hopes to get the chance to perform his song live in South Africa during the World Cup to help raise as much as possible for the Bobby Moore Fund’s work. He says: “I think it’s a catchy song that plays to the heart of the agony and ecstasy felt by football supporters. I’m a tortured Burnley fan so I should know! It’s rooted in Englishness but it’s really about the passion of following your team, so I’m hoping the England supporters can introduce it to the world.”


Title: Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (26/05/10)...
Post by: whitejc on May 26, 2010, 11:58:53 AM (
Cottagers Daily Rumor Mill: Continuing links of Arsenal interest in Fulham's Mark Schwarzer

On May 23rd entry of the Cottagers Daily Rumor Mill,  I posted of possible interest of Arsenal having in Mark Schwarzer. Well, this story is continuing to be written about. The Daily Mirror has a story that Arsene Wenger is about to look at Mark Schwarzer as a possible solution at goalkeeper.

The Daily Mirror article also states that Wenger believes he might be able to get Schwarzer at a reasonable price because of his age. This article talks about that Arsenal had scouted Schwarzer's last two home games for Fulham.

 This story also mentions Brede Hangeland who has in the past been linked to Arsenal. According to the Daily Mirror, Wenger is not in pursuit of Brede Hangeland, but thinks the player is highly ranked.

It sounds like to me the link of Schwarzer to Arsenal could be an ongoing story. I will update if there is any more inforamtion on thie strory.
Title: Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (26/05/10)...
Post by: whitejc on May 26, 2010, 12:00:44 PM (
Transfer Linked: Goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer

Arsenal fans know the deal when it comes to transfer deals: it's only official when it's announced on

That won't change this summer. But we know that transfer speculation will be rife in the build-up to the 2010/11 campaign and we intend to keep you abreast of the gossip between now and the Big Kick-Off.

Our Transfer Linked page will feature some of the rumours doing the rounds in the media. Just remember to take them with a large pinch of salt...

Mark Schwarzer (Fulham)
Goalkeeper - 37 years old
[Daily Mirror]
According to the Daily Mirror, Arsène Wenger has made Fulham goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer one of his priority targets in this summer's transfer window. The report claims that Wenger had the Australian keeper scouted during Fulham's final two home games of the season - one of which was of course against Arsenal at Emirates Stadium. Schwarzer, 37, has one year of his contract left to run at Craven Cottage.
Title: Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (26/05/10)...
Post by: whitejc on May 26, 2010, 01:24:19 PM (
Goal of the Season
Wednesday 26th May 2010
Voting has now closed for the Goal of the Season 2009/10 vote.  The winner is...

Clint Dempsey v Juventus
2nd place - Zoltan Gera v Man City
3rd place - Simon Davies v Hamburg
4th place - Bobby Zamora v Shakhtar
Title: Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (26/05/10)...
Post by: whitejc on May 26, 2010, 01:25:43 PM (
Damien Duff willing to do battle for the cause

Damien Duff is willing to take the kicks and bangs of international football if it brings victory for the Republic of Ireland.

Over the 12 years and 82 caps, the Dubliner has been the target of many a tough defender and last night the names of Paraguay's Paulo da Silva and Denis Caniza were added to a long list of players that have left their mark on Duff.

The Fulham winger is one of most the fouled players in the Premier League and has also perfected the art of drawing in defenders and winning free-kicks in dangerous positions.

It was his delivery that led to Kevin Doyle's opening goal in the 2-1 win at the RDS, although he did admit it was not the best quality free-kick.

Duff said: 'I was getting a few kicks, which was a bit of a struggle in the end but I felt great. I had a week or ten days off. It's a good win and we're looking forward to Friday already.

'It was one of our set pieces for the first one. It probably wasn't even the best of balls from myself, but it is straight off the training ground that one. Lucky enough, it worked.

'The second one was a great goal. I thought it was a great ball by Kells into Doyler, great chest and great finish by Liamo [Lawrence]. So we're well pleased with that.

'There are no real friendlies nowadays and they are all important games. Hopefully, we can carry on, win Friday, and carry on in to the friendly in August (against Argentina) and then the qualifiers.'

Asked if he would be fit for the game against Algeria on Friday, Duff said: 'Ah yeah, grand. There is probably a target sign on my calves at the minute. I nearly missed the [Europa League] final because of it. The most important win tonight was get back winning and it's good confidence for the team and a winning mentality.'

Duff was replaced by Keith Fahey in the second half and welcomed the addition of several new faces, such as Fahey and James McCarthy, into the international squad.

He said: 'I played against him [Fahey] at the Cottage earlier in the season and I was impressed with him. It's a pity James McCarthy can't be here this week. I've liked the look of him. Hopefully, there will be more to come from a lot of the lads.

Duff has enjoyed a return to form under Roy Hodgson at Fulham after enduring a difficult spell at Newcastle United as they were relegated from the Premier League.

Hodgson also managed Duff at Blackburn Rovers in the late 1990s and the Dubliner hopes he stays at Craven Cottage, despite the speculation linking him with a move back to Inter Milan.

Duff said: 'He's done a great job there so far and I still think there is an awful lot more to do. I'd say he thinks he has got unfinished business there. I think we can go from strength to strength, so hopefully he'll stay. I think he will.

'I've always thought the world of him, it's great working with him and anyone that has worked with him will tell you he is a top coach. He's great and you can see what he has done for the team this season.'

Title: Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (26/05/10)...
Post by: whitejc on May 26, 2010, 01:27:20 PM (
Fulham's stars join Down’s Syndrome tennis showcase event
Nicky Shorey and Stefano Okaka back the Places for Players initiative

Fulham FC players Nicky Shorey and Stefano Okaka surprised members of the Fulham FC Foundation’s Down’s Syndrome Tennis team recently by joining them, along with Anne Keothavong, British Women’s number 3, whilst they trained at the National Tennis Centre (NTC) in Roehampton, Surrey.

The players, taking part in the Premier League Places for Players initiative, took time out from their evening to assist Fulham FC Foundation and Tennis Foundation staff in coaching the training session.

The Down’s Syndrome Tennis project, the first of its kind nationally, began in January of this year, following the success of Fulham FC Foundation’s Down’s Syndrome Football team – the Fulham Badgers – which was set up in 2006 with the help of the DSA (Down’s Syndrome Association).

Each Tennis session runs from 6.30pm – 7.30pm on a Tuesday evening and is open to anyone with Down’s syndrome that is between the age of 10 and 25. The scheme encourages any siblings that come to the NTC as spectators to join in the activity too.

Formed as part of the ‘Positive Minds’ project run by the Fulham FC Foundation, the scheme works in partnership with the Tennis Foundation and forms a vital element in the DSA’s DSActive campaign to encourage those with Down’s syndrome to become more involved in sport.

Initially piloted within a 7-mile radius of Raynes Park, the scheme soon acquired a selection of participants with the disability that had not been involved in the previous football sessions.

Having moved to the National Tennis Centre in Roehampton in April 2010, the weekly programme now enables those involved access to some of the most sought after tennis amenities in England.

Claire Lavers, Director of Disability Tennis at the Tennis Foundation said: “This co-ordinated approach to delivering tennis to the local Down’s syndrome community continues The Tennis Foundation's efforts to discover and encourage more players with learning disabilities to take up tennis.

“Our motto is ‘One Game All’; tennis should be accessible to and be able to be enjoyed by everyone and we very much look forward to giving the players a warm welcome at the National Tennis Centre. We are in discussion with Fulham FC Foundation to identify more partnership initiatives and would like to encourage similar activities more widely with football.”

The Fulham FC Foundation and the Tennis Foundation each supply a coach for the sessions, enforcing the partnership between the two charities, as well as providing the best tutoring possible for the participants involved.

Steven Day, Chief Executive Officer of the Fulham FC Foundation commented: “The great work being produced in partnership with the Tennis Foundation shows the diversity of our charity and enforces our motto of ‘building better lives through sport’.

"It’s fantastic for us to see that having already produced a successful Down’s syndrome football team – the Fulham Badgers – that we can also encourage participation in a different sport that normally wouldn’t be linked to Fulham.”

The Down's Syndrome Association's vast network throughout the Down's syndrome and greater learning disability communities, combined with their great links with the Fulham FC Foundation, have ensured that knowledge of the local courses are a priority and thus far have been a great success.

Paul Zanon, Business Development Director at the Down’s Syndrome Association is delighted at the involvement people with the disability have in getting access to sports coaching.

"In 2006 the Fulham FC Foundation (FFCF) partnered with the DSA to create the first football team of the DSActive programme. By 2008 news of this successful partnership was spreading fast and a host of other teams soon expressed their interest to want to participate, including QPR, Charlton and West Ham.

"Once again, FFCF in partnership with the Tennis Foundation, have taken the pioneering role and are breaking the mould by launching tennis for people with Down's syndrome. As with the football, the DSA is expecting to see incredible benefits by way of physical, social and emotional health improvements, not to mention having lots of fun during the training process!"

Steven Day concluded: “It’s valuable for us to know that we can work effectively with groups (like the DSA and the Tennis Foundation) to create successful projects in the local community, that appeal to an audience not usually at the forefront of sporting initiatives.

"We hope that the popularity of this course will be transferable to a new basketball initiative with the Kingston Wildcats that we will look to unveil later this year.”

Title: Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (26/05/10)...
Post by: whitejc on May 26, 2010, 01:28:44 PM (
Chris Smalling hails Roy Hodgson after Manchester United move

CHRIS Smalling paid tribute to boss Roy Hodgson after completing his move to Manchester United.

The England U21 international makes the switch to Old Trafford this summer, just two years after joining Fulham from non-league minnow Maidstone.

And he admits Hodgson has played a major part in his £10million move to the North West.

He said: "The gaffer's been instrumental in my development.

"Ever since the first day I walked through the door he was there commenting on my game. He's been a great person to look up to.

"These two years have gone so fast. I've got to know the lads and built a bond with them, so it's sad to be leaving."
Title: Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (26/05/10)...
Post by: whitejc on May 26, 2010, 04:25:44 PM (
Germans and Gunners go to Schwar

Wolfsburg have joined Arsenal in the growing list of clubs interested in Fulham keeper Mark Schwarzer.
The former Bundesliga champions have been told to get the 37-year-old Australian by new boss Steve McClaren, who worked with Schwarzer at Middlesbrough when they won the Carling Cup and reached the UEFA Cup final.

Wolfsburg know all about the Fulham keeper, who speaks fluent German, from the Europa League semi-final when he made a couple of key saves in the first half of the second leg.

Arsenal have also been linked to Schwarzer and reports yesterday claimed Arsene Wenger had him scouted in Fulham's final two matches of the season - although he knows all about him from almost ten years of watching him in the Premier League.

All the rumours are good for Schwarzer's new deal talks, with the ex-Bradford City star out of contract in 12 months.
Title: Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (26/05/10)...
Post by: whitejc on May 26, 2010, 04:27:09 PM (
Duff desperate for Roy to stay at Cottage

Damien Duff is hoping Fulham can head off interest in Roy Hodgson this summer amid reports Inter Milan could target him as their next manager.

Hodgson has found himself at the centre of speculation that suitors could be beating a path to his door after he guided the Londoners to the Europa League final, where they lost narrowly to a Diego Forlan-inspired Atletico Madrid.

Republic of Ireland international Duff, who had previously worked under the Englishman as a young player at Blackburn, is desperate for Hodgson to remain at Craven Cottage.

He said: "He's done a great job there so far and I still think there's an awful lot more to do.

"I would say the thinks he's got unfinished business there and I think we can go from strength to strength, so hopefully he will stay. I think he will.

"I started off in the first team 12, 13 years ago with him, so I have always thought the world of him.

"It's great working with him and anyone who has worked with him, he is a top coach, they will tell you.

"He's great, and you can see what he has done with the team this season."

Hodgson's achievements have rightly won him plaudits across the board, and Duff believes that is nothing more than he deserves.

He said: "A million per cent. He's a top coach, as you can see by his CV, the teams he has managed.

"He has managed Inter Milan twice, so you needn't say anymore."
Title: Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (26/05/10)...
Post by: whitejc on May 26, 2010, 04:35:49 PM (
Arsenal reportedly closing in on Schwarzer


Socceroos goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer could be set for a shock move to English Premier League giant Arsenal, according to mounting speculation in the English press.

London's Daily Mirror has reported Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger is very keen to bring the Fulham shot stopper to the club after losing faith with Manuel Almunia in the late stages of last season.

The newspaper said the 37-year-old had moved to the top of Arsenal's hit list with Wenger put off by high prices for his other goalkeeping targets - AZ Alkmaar's Sergio Romero and Shakhtar Donetsk goalkeeper Andriy Pyatov.

Schwarzer, who boarded a plane for South Africa with his Australian team-mates on Wednesday, has been in career-best form for Fulham this season.

His performances helped guide them to the Europa League final and a credible 12th in the Premier League, and along the way he became the first Australian to win a league player-of-the-month award.

He has another year on his contract at Craven Cottage, but Wenger reportedly feels he could sign Schwarzer for a good price because of his age.

Separate reports earlier this month said the Frenchman scouted Schwarzer during Fulham's final two home games of the season.

The former Middlesbrough goalkeeper said last month he felt as if he could play on into his 40s.

And he admits he had no thoughts of retirement as he approached his 38th birthday in October.

"I want to keep going as long as I can," he said.

"As long as I'm enjoying it, and able to play at this level, why not?"

It has been reported Wenger could have a transfer fund of 40 million pounds ($A69.6 million) for the upcoming season - more if midfielder Cesc Fabregas is sold.