Author Topic: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (24.02.10)  (Read 11983 times)

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (24.02.10)
« Reply #40 on: February 24, 2010, 01:59:23 PM »,25212,12038_5977021,00.html


I recently read an article from Sam Alladyce and he's reported to have said that Chris Samba is being penalised by referees because he is too tall. I wonder how true or false this statement is. Is Alladyce's comment on his influential centre back true or is it because he feels aggrieved? Peter McLaughlin

MARTIN SAYS: A good question. As somebody of 6ft 3ins myself, I have great sympathy for tall players. During my undistinguished non-league career I always felt referees penalised taller players for aesthetic reasons; sometimes they look ungainly and are penalised in a fair fight for the ball or for backing in when the referee should just allow play to carry on. I mentioned it in reference to Peter Crouch in commentary last Sunday and I do think it can be very frustrating for tall players.

Taking a more scientific approach and using the Premier League's official website, I have looked at the disciplinary records of the tallest players in the Premier League. I have looked only at outfield players who have played at least five Premier League games this season.

Of this small sample, 0.99 fouls are committed per game and these eight players are booked once every 12.58 games. On average, a Premier League player has committed 12 fouls this season and has picked up two yellow cards. So you could suggest that the tallest players tend to concede more fouls, but don't really tend to pick up more bookings.

Outfield players above 193cm. Must have played at least five Premier League games:

Player Height (cm) Appearances Fouls committed Yellow Cards Red cards

Stefan Maierhofer 202 8 5 1 1

Peter Crouch 198 27 34 1 0

Zat Knight 198 23 11 1 0

Anthony Gardner 196 21 15 1 0

Nwankwo Kanu 196 17 8 0 0

Marouane Fellaini 194 23 56 6 0

Brede Hangeland 194 26 18 2 0

Chris Smalling 194 6 3 0 0

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (24.02.10)
« Reply #41 on: February 24, 2010, 02:01:12 PM »,25212,12038_5977021,00.html


Hi Martin, Good column as always. As a Rovers fan I have noticed recently that Nikola Kalinic manages to hit the post almost every game at the moment. What I would like to know is Kalinic top of the 'Hit the Woodwork' table this season and how does he compare to other players? Keep up the good work! Peter Stock (Blackburn Rovers fan)

MARTIN SAYS: In terms of the Premier League Nikola Kalinic has hit the woodwork on just two occasions. The boys at Opta have given us the stats you want and Wayne Rooney leads the way in terms of hitting the post or crossbar. The Manchester United striker has hit it six times this season, one more than Liverpool's Steven Gerrard and Wigan's Charles N'Zogbia.

Hitting the woodwork in the Premier League:

SIX TIMES: Rooney (Manchester United)

Gerrard (Liverpool)
N'Zogbia (Wigan Athletic)

Arshavin (Arsenal)
Crouch (Tottenham)
Dempsey (Fulham)
Pedersen (Blackburn Rovers)
Scotland (Wigan Athletic)
Tevez (Manchester City)
van Persie (Arsenal)

Anelka (Chelsea)
Benitez (Birmingham City)
Benni McCarthy (Blackburn, now West Ham)
Defoe (Tottenham)
Drogba (Chelsea)
Eagles (Burnley)
Fabregas (Arsenal)
Kalinic (Blackburn Rovers)
Kalou (Chelsea)
Keogh (Wolverhampton Wanderers)
Kuyt (Liverpool)
Ngog (Liverpool)
Reid (Sunderland)
Rodallega (Wigan Athletic)
Taylor (Bolton Wanderers)

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (24.02.10)
« Reply #42 on: February 24, 2010, 02:04:22 PM »,,12555~1975720,00.html

Trollope hopeful over injured stars

 24 Feb 2010

Bristol Rovers boss Paul Trollope is hoping the postponement of Tuesday night's clash at Exeter will give him more time to get his injured stars back to fitness.

Wayne Brown, Danny Coles, Chris Lines and Jo Kuffour would all have missed out at St James Park, which was called off due to a waterlogged pitch, while Byron Anthony was struggling after picking up an injury in training on Monday.

Trollope, whose side face Colchester on Saturday, told the club's official website: "The soft tissue injuries sustained by Chris Lines and Jo Kuffour are probably taking a wee bit longer to heal than we first thought.

"We had hoped that both would have been back for (the Exeter) game, but they were still experiencing a little bit of soreness over the weekend. We are hoping to get one, or both, back for (Saturday's clash with Colchester).

"Danny Coles is making good progress with his jarred knee and is expected to join in training on Thursday, while Wayne Brown is still continuing his rehab at Fulham but may be involved on Saturday."

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (24.02.10)
« Reply #43 on: February 24, 2010, 02:21:08 PM »

George Best, the footballing Beatle, one of the greatest of the swinging 60s? In 1970, after being suspended for bringing the game into disrepute, he returned and promptly scored six goals in an 8-2 victory at Northampton.

Then in 1976, on his debut for Fulham, he scored after just 71 seconds. George played 361 games for Manchester United with a haul of 137 goals.

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (24.02.10)
« Reply #44 on: February 24, 2010, 02:23:38 PM »

Several heads of state invited to inauguration of Ukraine's new president

© RIA Novosti. Grigoriy Sisoev


The inauguration of Ukrainian president elect Viktor Yanukovych on Thursday will be attended by 11 heads of state and 15 foreign ministers, the country's UNIAN news agency said on Wednesday.

Yanukovych is scheduled to take the oath of office at parliament on Thursday at 10:00 a.m. local time (08:00 GMT).

The Ukrainian Central Election Commission declared Yanukovych winner in the presidential election on February 14, but his rival Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko's appeal to contest the results suspended the announcement until last Saturday, when she withdrew it.

Invitations to attend the ceremony have been given to all Ukrainian ministers, the country's Youth and Sport Minister Yuriy Pavlenko said.

"I have received an invitation to the inauguration, and I am likely to attend it, because there is a responsibility, and such a notion as succession of power," Pavlenko said.

Tymoshenko's bloc meanwhile signaled it would not attend the ceremony, bloc member Serhiy Mishchenko said.

"We will not attend the inauguration. This is not our feast, and we have not been invited to the feast," the parliamentarian was quoted as saying on the Tymoshenko bloc's website last weekend.

The speaker of the lower house of Russia's parliament, the State Duma, Boris Gryzlov, who will lead the Russian delegation at Yanukovych's inauguration, expressed hope that relations between the two neighboring countries would be "more appropriate" with Yanukovych as the Ukrainian leader.

Relations with Moscow have been soured in recent years by pro-Western outgoing President Viktor Yushchenko's bid to accept Ukraine into NATO, bitter gas disputes, Kiev's support for Georgia during its August 2008 war with Russia over South Ossetia, and other issues.

Ukraine's parliament rehearsed the inauguration ceremony on Wednesday.

The mayor of eastern Ukraine's city of Donetsk, Oleksandr Lukyanchenko, said Yanukovych could attend a Europa League football match between Shakhtar Donetsk and England's Fulham after the inauguration.

"There is no exact information, but there was such an intention," Lukyanchenko said.

Shakhtar lost to Fulham 2-1 in the League's first leg last Thursday.

KIEV, February 24 (RIA Novosti)

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (24.02.10)
« Reply #45 on: February 24, 2010, 02:31:37 PM »

Shakhtar Donetsk v Fulham: Brede Hangeland Primed for Ukraine Onslaught

24/2/2010 9:03 AM GMT By Dean Jones



Roy Hodgson was careful not to label the first-leg victory over Shakhtar Donetsk as his best while manager of Fulham. But a similar performance in this meeting in the Ukraine would certainly be rather special.

It would catapult his side into the final 16 of the Europa League and set up an encounter with the might of Ajax or Juventus.

That would be a remarkable achievement for a side that was heading for relegation from the Premier League less than two years ago. And even Hodgson, usualyy so composed, would have to show some emotion if Fulham do edge out the current Uefa Cup holders.

During their progress in this competition, Hodgson has consistently played down his side's chances of success, insisting the cup would prove a great experience for many of his players - but little more.

Try telling that to Fulham supporters today. They are also into the quarter-finals of the FA Cup, and hope that the first-ever piece of major silverware could soon be heading to Craven Cottage.

This season has seen Fulham defeat both Manchester United and Liverpool in the Premier League, but while those results were a tremendous achievement, they will not lead to a trophy of any shape or size.

That's why this European adventure has breathed new life into this campaign. Defender Brede Hangeland knows he will need to be at his best for the latest trip, as there is no doubt Fulham's back line will be under intense pressure for long spells of the game.

He said: "We won the first-leg 2-1 even though they must have had 60 to 70 percent of the possession - it's important that you don't get frustrated by that.

"I think they're the best team we've played in Europe by quite a margin. You could see why they're the current holders of the Uefa Cup.

"We'll go to Donetsk with a lot of confidence, though, and hopefully we can get a good result. But we'll have to take our chances when we get there."

Strategy: It's a tough situation, because Fulham can not afford to sit back and defend their lead. Shakhtar will brush off the result from the first-leg, and focus on producing the free flowing, attacking football that they are capable of playing. The best way to combat the slick passing style is for Fulham to focus on their own pattern of play and to push for another goal that really would leave Shakhtar with a battle on their hands.

Injury Update: There is no sign yet of a return to the side for knee injury victims Andrew Johnson, Clint Dempsey and John Pantsil, while Paul Konchesky is still nursing an ankle and calf problem. Midfielder Kagisho Dikgacoi is expected to miss out as he also has injury to his ankle.


Luiz Adriano could prove to be the man that decides this tie. The Brazilian scored at Craven Cottage, and has five goals in the competition so far this season. However, with Croatian Dario Srna pulling the strings in midfield and 24-year-old Brazilian Fernandinho considered a superb talent, Fulham will really have to be on guard. One aspect that could hurt the Ukranians is the fact they have not been in league action since the middle of December, due to a winter break.

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (24.02.10)
« Reply #46 on: February 24, 2010, 02:38:26 PM »

Shakhtar will unleash their brilliant Brazilians as they aim to dump Fulham out the Europa League

Wednesday, February 24th, 2010

Shakhtar Donetsk v Fulham, Europa League, February 25, 2010

Shakhtar Donetsk 8/15; Draw 100/30; Fulham 7/1

“They’re the holders, so it’s always going to be tough. We can’t sit back otherwise we’re going to create a lot of problems for ourselves. We’ll be looking to score – we always do when we’re away. Hopefully we can progress.” - Chris Biard.

Fulham stand on the brink of a remarkable achievement as the west Londoners head to the Ukraine, 2-1 up from the first leg, to take on last season’s UEFA Cup holders Shakhtar. The Cottagers earned their slender advantage courtesy of goals from Zoltan Gera and Bobby Zamora, and provided the visitors avoid defeat in Donetsk they will defy the odds to reach the last 16 where they’ll meet either Juventus or Ajax.

Fulham will have been encouraged by the shaky performance of Shakhtar’s defence from the first leg. In particular, goalkeeper Andriy Pyatov had several nervy moments as he allowed Zoltan Gera’s early shot creep into his net, and that goal could yet prove to be a costly mistake in the grand scheme of the tie. Further question-marks were levelled at Shakhtar’s experienced backline, including the likes of Croatian international Darjio Srna and Romanian international Razvan Rat, as the Fulham forward line conjured up numerous efforts on goal throughout the contest.

Arguably however, the appraisal of Shakhtar’s defensive insecurities was magnified by the brilliance of their attacking play at the other end of the pitch. (9/4 to be over 3.5 goals.)

As was the case during their triumphant 2008/09 season, Shakhtar’s midfield and attack continues to be saturated with high-quality, young Brazilian imports, that most clubs in world football would crave to have on their books. And their quality was in full evidence last week as the likes of Willian, Ilsinho, Fernandinho, Luiz Adriano and Jadsen all showed off talents at Craven Cottage.

Shakhtar’s stockpile of brilliant Brazilians doesn’t stop there however. A former target of Manchester United, Shakhtar won the race in the summer to sign the much-hyped Douglas Costa - dubbed the “new Ronaldinho” - for a reported fee of €12 million. And even more quality came through the door of at the end of 2009 as the club splurged another €6 million on snapping up the wonderful Alex Teixeira from Vasco da Gama after the forward was one of the stars of the shwo at the Under-20 World Cup last year in Egypt.

With so many Brazilians to pick from, it seems difficult to believe that Fulham will keep a clean sheet in Donetsk. (Fulham are 6/1 to keep a clean sheet.) But the Premier Leaguers will be far from pessimistic, as they will also feel confident that they can score goals at the other end. (Shakthar are 21/20 to keep a clean sheet, 5/6 against.)

One of the most obvious features of match last week was the way in which Shakhtar dropped their pace after the break. With the Ukrainian league still on it’s mid-season break, Mircea Lucescu’s team struggled to find the form and tempo which brought them Luiz Adriano’s equaliser at the end of the opening 45. Fulham were able to cash in on their opponents lack of match fitness as Bobby Zamora smashed home a brilliant second and they could have had more goals as gaps began opening up as they game became more stretched. (Draw/Fulham is 17/1.)

Only once in this season’s Europa League, in the defeat to Russian outfit Amkar Perm back in August, have Fulham failed to score away from home. Credit for that has to be given to Roy Hodgson’s fluent 4-4-1-1 away formation, in which Zamora is the main target striker, Gera is able in float around in the hole behind him, while Damien Duff and Danny Murphy offer that extra bit of guile and class to help support their side’s attacking efforts.

Balancing out their forward-thinking players, Dickson Etuhu plays a crucial role as the midfield enforcer protecting the back-four. And with Brede Hangeland and Aaron Hughes playing in front of experienced keeper Mark Schwarzer, Fulham have a solid defensive unit on which they can rely.

Any kind of draw at the Donbass Arena will be enough to see the west London side go through, although playing for a stalemate is always a dangerous game. Rather, the Cottagers may decide that attack is their best form of defence, and should they net a crucial away goal then maybe, just maybe, Fulham can start to have dreams of reaching the final in Hamburg.

101gg predicts: Shakhtar Donetsk 3 - Fulham 1 (14/1)

Shakhtar Donetsk 8/15; Draw 100/30; Fulham 7/1

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (24.02.10)
« Reply #47 on: February 24, 2010, 03:25:54 PM »

The Wednesday Wonder: Bobby Zamora

By Taylor Fisher | 24th February 2010
“Bobby for England!” were the cries from the Fulham faithful on Sunday as Bobby Zamora smacked home a free kick from 20 yards out. There was nothing that Joe Hart could do to stop the powerful left-footed shot by Zamora. The 90th minute winner was Zamora’s eighth goal of the season and helped complete a hard-fought comeback by Fulham at Craven Cottage.

The day didn’t get started well for Fulham, though. Chris Baird looked as though he was playing for Birmingham with the way he headed home a beautiful cross from Lee Bowyer. That early own goal was all the first half had in store as the Blues went into the break with a lucky 1-0 lead.

The second half had much more in store for all 21,758 in attendance, though. Less than fifteen minutes after the second half kicked off, Damien Duff played a beautiful one-two with Zoltan Gera then rocketed home a lefty shot that banged in off the post. The equalizer on sixty minutes pumped up the crowd and the team.

It appeared as though the match would end at one apiece, but Bobby Zamora still had more in store for the hometown crowd. As the seconds ticked off the clock, Roy Hodgson looked to have the last laugh, and that is exactly what would happen. Zoltan Gera had the ball about twenty yards out when Stephen Carr blatantly body checked him, setting up the dramatic finish.

Zamora stepped up to take the free kick and that was that. His shot easily curled around a poorly set up wall by Birmingham and flew just over Joe Hart’s outstretched hand. That goal, along with his tremendous work throughout the match, is why Bobby Zamora is this week’s Premiership Talk Wednesday Wonder.

“Bobby for England!” The Fulham faithful know it. We know it. Does Fabio?

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (24.02.10)
« Reply #48 on: February 24, 2010, 03:27:23 PM »,19528,11661_5977456,00.html

Hodgson welcomes pressure

Cottagers boss happy to be under the spotlight

By Chris Burton   Last updated: 24th February 2010   

Roy Hodgson is relishing taking on the challenges which lie ahead for Fulham this season.

The Cottagers exceeded all expectations in 2009, securing seventh spot in the Premier League and a place in the Europa League.

They remain on course to emulate that achievement this term, while they have also slipped quietly into the quarter-finals of the FA Cup and reached the last 32 in continental competition.

Such success has helped to raise the bar at Craven Cottage, with supporters now expectant rather than hopeful.

Hodgson, though, has welcomed the pressure placed on his shoulders and hopes he can continue to appease the fans for the foreseeable future.

"Expectations mean you are having success, when there is no expectation that means no-one believes in you or believes you are capable of doing something," he told

"I'm not sure that people expecting from you is a negative thing. Obviously one hopes expectations are tempered by the reality of situations and people regard each situation on its merit."


Hodgson admits the outlook appears bright for Fulham pushing forward but is keen to avoid slipping into the trap of demanding too much from his players.

"I suppose a good season for us would be if we can maintain our mid-table position and if we can give a good account of ourselves in the coming match against Shakhtar (Donetsk) and then have a bit of luck in the quarter-final (of the FA Cup) against either Tottenham or Bolton," he said.

"We have got a lot to play for and some exciting times ahead but maintaining the status quo of what we have done so far would certainly mean, from my point of view, that we have had a good season, considering that recently we have had to deal with a number of injuries to key players.

"We are still being hampered by that and all managers will tell you that losing three or four of your senior first-team players and your better first-team players is not easy to deal with."

Hodgson has experienced many highs and lows over the course of his distinguished career, but admits his feats at Fulham rank alongside anything he has achieved in the game.

He said: "It's been very good. I am very happy here and I have been very satisfied with the job and the relative success we have had.

"In terms of my CV, I would regard the work here and the success here to be on a par with a lot of the successes in the past."

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (24.02.10)
« Reply #49 on: February 24, 2010, 03:28:19 PM »

The Fulham diet

by Dan on February 24, 2010

A bit of lunchtime surfing and I came across this from Fulham FC’s nutrionist Stephen Hines.

Nutrition is very important. The average Premier League player covers 10-12k in one 90 minute match, so just as you wouldn’t expect to travel very far in a car with no petrol, the fuelling of the Fulham stars is a serious matter too…

A pre-match meal should contain low GL carbohydrates for a controlled but short-term energy boost, proteins that improve cognition, motivation and that balance neurotransmitters and essential fats that control inflammation. It should also aim to eliminate anything that will cause stress to the body. Ideally, this would be predominantly gluten free foods, such as rice (not pasta or pizza), things like fish, lean meats or eggs and plenty or fruit and vegetables, such as blueberries, raspberries, carrots and broccoli. These foods provide a host of antioxidants that protect the body from free radicals generated during the game and a host of vitamins and minerals that are essential to drive the metabolic reactions that convert food to energy.
I would suggest that players should not be allowed to eat what they like and should be provided a menu that covers all the basics described above and that provides them with the best chance to perform well and recover well after the game.

Stephen’s top tips

So, you play a bit yourself and want to gain an edge over those mouthy Sunday league full-backs? Then read on…

Keep hydrated:

Get into the habit of taking on plenty of liquid throughout the week, but that’s not an excuse to go to the pub or a justification for that morning latte.

Drink lots of water instead of tea, coffee or beer. Try and replace those break-time cups of tea with water, particularly in the two days before a game. On the morning of a game, drink as much water as you can tolerate. You should be peeing freely and the urine should be colourless.

Immediately after the game, drink some Lucozade Hydro – or even water with a tiny pinch of salt – to replace the nutrients lost through sweating. Then maybe some milk. Our boys have shakes which contain special protein and carbohydrates, but a cheap, easy substitute would be a standard milkshake.

Food for thought:

Consuming the right pre and post-match meals isn’t just for professionals. Eating the right nutrients can make a significant difference to performance and energy at any level of competition.

In the two to three hours before a game try to eat some fish with wholegrain rice and vegetables to give you some energy. Then try and eat something as soon as you can after exercising. I suggest always trying to have lots of fruit, nuts and seeds as snacks around you at training and game times.”

Sugar is not so sweet:

Chomping down a Mars bar might seem like a good idea to give you lots of energy from sugar, but be warned.

Things that are really high in sugar will upset your blood sugar and disrupt your hormones. The brain runs on glucose, so you want some blood sugar, but you don’t want it spiking really high and then really low because you’ll have less glucose for your brain, which will mean your reaction times fall right down.

Go nuts:

Fancy a quick snack? Then reach for some nuts.
They are a super food and they’re healthy. People always assume they’re high in fat, which they are; but they are healthy fats (what we call essential fats) that you don’t make in your body so you have to get them in your diet, such as the monounsaturated fats Omega 3 and Omega 6. They’re very good for your brain, your nervous system, your eyes and they make hormones. They’re extremely useful.

Nuts are also full of good protein and carbohydrate. They’re high in zinc, magnesium, and B Vitamins too and those are the kinds of vitamins you need to turn your food into energy.

Now, did you get all that?

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (24.02.10)
« Reply #50 on: February 24, 2010, 03:40:12 PM »

Lucescu asks Shakhtar to dig deep

Published: Wednesday 24 February 2010

Having eliminated English opponents in last season's UEFA Cup round of 32, Mircea Lucescu asked FC Shakhtar Donetsk to prove their final win "was not down to luck" as they face Fulham FC.

Mircea Lucescu urged his FC Shakhtar Donetsk side to "prove that our success in the final UEFA Cup was not down to sheer luck" as they look to overturn a 2-1 first-leg deficit at home against Fulham FC.

A tremendous strike from Bobby Zamora saw Roy Hodgson's Fulham take a slender advantage in the UEFA Europa League round of 32 opener at Craven Cottage, but having won eight of their last ten European home games, Lucescu's side know they can draw considerable strength from their home fans. "Our supporters are a mighty force," said Lucescu. "Their help was very important during the group stage. Now we must prove our success in the final UEFA Cup was not down to luck."

Rewind 11 months and the Pitmen were facing a similar task having lost the first leg of their UEFA Cup round of 16 tie 1-0 at PFC CSKA Moskva, but they duly won 2-0 in the return fixture in Donetsk to go through. "It's swings and roundabouts," said the Romanian coach. "Last year we needed two goals. It took a supreme effort. Now our task looks easier because one goal might be enough. On the other hand, before the home match against CSKA I didn't need to say anything to motivate my players. We have to focus. Any mistake might be crucial."

London sides have not thrived in Donetsk; Arsenal FC lost a 2000/01 UEFA Champions League group stage game 3-0 at Shakhtar, while late goals from Yevhen Seleznyov and Jadson saw the Pitmen beat Tottenham Hotspur FC 2-0 in last season's round of 32. Brazilian midfielder Willian remember that game very well, but was wary of making any comparison with the club's current opponents. "Fulham are a much better and more dangerous side," said the 21-year-old.

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (24.02.10)
« Reply #51 on: February 24, 2010, 04:58:50 PM »

2) Clint Dempsey

There haven’t been a lot of football players that have done well from the States, apart from of course Roy Wegerle! But Dempsey has been a revelation under Roy Hodgson and he is playing some outstanding football. The midfielder doesn’t really get the plaudits he deserves after hiding in the shadows of the likes of Zamora and Duff. He chips in with a lot of goals and it wouldn’t be surprising if a bigger team were to tempt Fulham with a bid in the summer.

Sigh. Where do these guys get their information? Roy Wegerle was a South African. He went to colled in the USA, married an American girl and became naturalized. Eventually, he played for the USA, but he'd already played for Luton Town, QPR, Blackburn, and Coventry City before he ever kicked a ball in an American league.