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Monday Fulham Stuff (01.02.10)

Started by White Noise, January 31, 2010, 07:10:57 PM

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White Noise

Fulham-bound Stefano Okaka signs off with winner for Roma

By Sportsmail Reporter

Last updated at 6:38 PM on 31st January 2010

Comments (0) Add to My Stories Stefano Okaka was delighted to have scored the winner in his last game for Roma this season before his move to Fulham on Monday.

The Roma striker is set to join the Premier League outfit on a six-month loan deal from the Eternal City giants.

There was no better way to bid the Roma faithful farewell than by firing his team to a 2-1 victory over Siena at the Stadio Olimpico on Sunday.

Rounded off nicely: Okaka slips past Siena goalkeeper Gianluca Curci

All hands to the pump: Okaka is set to be announced at Fulham on Monday

Okaka entered the pitch on the hour mark and struck his first goal of the campaign two minutes from time.

'It is a great satisfaction,' admitted an emotional Okaka. 'It was a great joy to celebrate with the fans. I wanted to do well because I'm leaving this evening (for London).

'The (Roma) fans have always loved me and I have always tried to work hard. Work always pays off and in the last five months I have taken many satisfactions.

'Now I will pack my bags and leave.

'It's normal that I will feel nostalgic of these fans, but I am going there (Fulham) to do well and we will see what happens.

'I have already met (Roy) Hodgson. He is a great person and I am going there to learn from him.'

The 20-year-old has made seven league appearances for Claudio Ranieri's Roma this season, all as a substitute.

Read more:

White Noise

Snap your hand off – Fulham's Damien Duff

Date: 30th January 2010 at 8:00 pm

Roy Hodgson has to be credited for resurrecting Fulham and turning them into a genuine top half side. In Europe and flying high in the Premier League, he has also made a number of excellent signings, Damien Duff being one of them. A £2.5 million signing from Newcastle United, Duff has shown this season he can terrorise defences just as he used to in his Blackburn and Chelsea days.

Joining Blackburn as a trainee in 1996 after playing for Leicester Celtic, St. Kevin's Boys and Lourdes Celtic as a schoolboy in Republic of Ireland. He made his Blackburn debut at the age of 18 against Leicester City on the final day of the 1996-97 season.

After being relegated, Duff helped Blackburn achieve promotion back to the Premier League in 2000-01 and then win the League Cup the following season. In the 2002-03 season he finished top goal scorer for Rovers with 11 league goals.

A £17 million transfer to Chelsea followed and he started his Chelsea career well but was somewhat disrupted by injury. The arrival of Jose Mourinho threatened to put an end to Duff's Chelsea career as he signed Arjen Robben, though Duff found solace on the right-wing and formed a great partnership with the Flying Dutchman as Chelsea went on to win two League titles and a League Cup. Injuries plagued Duff during the latter stages his career and was eventually transferred to Newcastle United for £5 million in 2006.

Duff's Newcastle career can be summed up with one word; injured. He spent most of his time in the northeast on the treatment table. In the final match of the 2008–09 Season, against Aston Villa in a crucial relegation decider, Duff unluckily scored the deciding own goal that sent his side down. He voiced his intention to help Newcastle back into the Premier League but Hodgson and Fulham stepped in and brought the Irish winger back to London and back to the Premier League.

The transfer can only be described as a bargain; Duff has regained some of the form that led Chelsea to pay £17 million for his services an age ago. Reunited with his first boss Roy Hodgson, it seems he is happy playing once more and with 21 games so far this season for Fulham, it seems his injury problems are behind him. Hodgson has employed Duff mainly on the right-wing allowing him to cut inside more often and with a tremendous work rate he fits into the Fulham system extremely well.

At £2.5 million he could well prove to be the bargain of the season.


Isn't it refreshing to see players wanting to be at Fulham so that they can learn from Roy, I hope the lad does well for us.
Guy goes into the doctor's.
"Doc, I've got a cricket ball stuck up my backside
"How's that?"
"Don't you start"

White Noise

Chelsea had first chance to sign Fulham defender Chris Smalling - before he joined Manchester United

By Sportsmail Reporter

Last updated at 2:23 PM on 31st January 2010

Chelsea passed up the chance to sign Manchester United-bound Chris Smalling for free, according to the player's former manager at Maidstone.

The 20-year-old completed his medical with the Old Trafford outfit on Thursday and will link up with the Red Devils from July 2010 on a four-year contract from Fulham.

The deal completes a meteoric rise for the England Under-21 star, who only two years ago was playing non-league football with Maidstone.

And it could have all been different for Smalling, with Chelsea passing up the opportunity to sign him.

Maidstone boss Alan Walker told the Sunday People: 'Chris was available on a free transfer because he was never under contract with us.

'A lot of clubs showed interest and Chelsea actually had him on trial and he played in a friendly match for them.
'But it was only Middlesbrough and Fulham who made offers to Chris and he chose Fulham.'

Read more:


I think he will be a very useful addition.

White Noise

Dakar, January 31 (APS) - The Senegalese striker Kamara was taken Sunday for six months at Scottish club Glasgow Celtic, has learned the APS source close to the player who evolved so far at Fulham (English elite) .

In lack of playing time, the Senegalese striker was in the viewfinder of several clubs in the English elite who hoped to attract during the winter transfer window transfers which is closed on Sunday.

''But he finally decided to commit to Celtic which is led by his former coach at West Bromwich Albion, Tom Mowbray,''said the source.

In addition, the loan allows for the Senegalese international to commit to three years.

Moved to Fulham from West Bromwich Albion in 2007-08, Kamara, due mainly to injuries, failed to win in the London club.

This year, the Senegalese international has played only nine games in 22 days for five championship tenure.

Kamara turns 30 in November.

White Noise

Fulham in for Shorey

by lydia on January 31, 2010

The injuries to the main Fulham starting 11 has been a bit of a concern lately but Skysports claim that Fulham are ready to pinch Nicky Shorey from Villa on loan for the rest of the season. I don't know too much about Shorey but I do know that we need cover at left-back and anyone who has played for England before should fit the bill!

White Noise

Celtic close in on Diomansy Kamara, Edson Braafheid and Ivan Ramis

• Celtic set to sign Ramis for £2m and secure two loan deals

Ewan Murray,

Sunday 31 January 2010 22.41 GMT

Diomansy Kamara is set to join Celtic on loan. Photograph: Joe Giddens/Empics Sport

Celtic are tonight set to complete deals to bring three players to Parkhead before the transfer window closes: Edson Braafheid, Ivan Ramis and Diomansy Kamara.

Braafheid, a left-back, arrives on a loan deal from Bayern Munich, while the French forward Kamara has agreed a similar short-term move from Fulham.

Celtic have agreed a fee, thought to be around £2m, with Real Mallorca for their 25-year-old centre-half Ramis.

Meanwhile Scott McDonald is edging closer to leaving Celtic, with Middlesbrough poised to complete a deal for the Australian striker tomorrow morning.

White Noise

EJ scores in Greece

by Dan on January 31, 2010

Eddie Johnson scored his first goal for FC Aris on Saturday as they went down to a 2-1 defeat by FC Xanthi today. Fittingly, his stoppage-time consolation strike came courtesy of an assist from his fellow American loanee Freddy Adu. Here are the highlights from the game, with EJ's goal:

White Noise

Gedo ends Ghana run

by Dan on January 31, 2010

The seemingly unstoppable Gedo scored the decisive goal in the Africa Cup of Nations final this afternoon to end Ghana's eyecatching run to the final.

We've been linked with the mercurial Egyptian this month and press reports had us vying with Wolves and other Premier League sides to sign him before close of business tomorrow. I should imagine his brilliantly-taken winner might have added another million to his transfer value. Remarkably, his five goals – the highest tally of anyone at the tournament – came from just eight shots and he didn't start a single game throughout the competition. I wonder what Roy could do with talent like that.

White Noise

Shorey Off On Loan Again?

Written by Tom Vickers Monday, 1st February 2010

Left-back to leave for Fulham

Nicky Shorey could be set for another loan move with Fulham his likely destination, according to Sky Sports.

The former England full-back spent a successful spell with Championship high-flyers Nottingham Forest recently, before being recalled by Villa as cover for the injured Stephen Warnock.

But, with Warnock recovering well, it seems Shorey will once again be surplus to requirements and he could fit the bill for Roy Hodgson's Cottagers.

Hodgson is without regular left-back Paul Konchesky, due to injury, and he will be looking for an experienced deputy. The 28-year-old Shorey would certainly be an able option and a move to west London now appears to be a serious possiblity.

White Noise

Fulham 0 - 2 Aston Villa

What a strange old match this was. Not without excitement, but somewhat lacking a storyline. Agbonlahor's two goals just before half-time neutering any drama.

Fulham are a sorry state without their full backs, who are so important to their forward drive. Hughes at right back was somewhat timid in crossing the halfway line and was desperately missed in the middle, where Hangeland and the increasingly expensive looking Smalling were carrying out some kind of Laurel & Hardy tribute act. Hangeland alone has been woefully out of sorts since returning from injury and was at fault for both goals. To me it looked like Agbonlahor's first goal was a foul on Smalling but his second was well taken. It was a shame that he spoilt it all with his lack of class by goading the Hammy End for no reason at all. Villa's goals actually came during Fulham's best spell of the first half as the Villains had spurned a couple of great opportunities earlier in the match.

Fulham had their chances throughout the game, but never looked deadly and rarely coherent. The second half was mainly Fulham 'attacking' but Friedel in the Villa goal only had to pull off a couple of good saves to keep a clean sheet.

Subs Riise and Elm combined well, but the latter's goal was unfortunately scrubbed off by a linesman's flag which earlier in the game appeared to be activated whenever Nevland got the ball. Bobby Z did well, but at times had to run onto his own flick-ons because of the lack of white shirts running beyond him.

The biggest cheer of the game came late on when a ball boy caught a badly directed looping ball. The little scamp (and I do mean little - Fulham's Ball Boys are tiny) lapped up the applause.
The strange match saw a Villa side not playing particularly well, yet comfortably winning. The ref Lee Mason had an odd day too, seemingly blowing up whenever a Villa player hit the deck but allowing the away team (Heskey in particular) to get away with some rough stuff.
In essence Villa physically and psychologically wanted the game more than an increasingly ragged looking Fulham side, but I would doubt they would come away with 3 points from many other opposition grounds playing like they did on Saturday. Roll on Wednesday and hopefully a chance to arrest this losing streak.

Attending: Me, Col and Rob.

White Noise

Fulham 0-2 Aston Villa: The Losing Streak Continues.

January 31, 2010

Another game, another loss. 2010 is starting poorly for Fulham. I have not dusted off the keyboard in a while and expressed my thoughts due to a combination of work and very little to positively talk about with regards to Fulham.

Whilst Fulham had lost their last four games, we were all able to hide behind the 'poor away from home' excuse. Not so anymore. Villa did not do much, but walked away with an easy win.

Gabriel Agbonlahor is a very good player, and a promising young English star. Two goals from him, one a bullet header, the other sweetly turning Hangleland before curling the ball into the far corner, silenced the Fulham crowd and left Roy Hodgson wondering how we had become so porous in defence. Fulham put in a weak performance, obviously missing two bombarding full backs and Clint Dempsey, the tireless and attack minded midfielder out for several months courtesy of a forceful Blackburn challenge.

The difference in the fullback position had been the one that has interested me the most. So often we have heard the mantra that if you stop Danny Murphy, you stop Fulham. Yet against Villa, Murphy had lots of space in both halves, and whilst he created a few chances, we still looked impotent up front. The lack of confident full backs has been crucial. Fulham are a team that play a very narrow game, especially away from home. They force the ball into wide positions which are theoretically less dangerous; and this usually works with the towering Hangeland heading away any aerial threats, and Hughes sweeping up any leftovers. But for all the defensive solidity playing narrow affords Fulham, it poses challenges in attack. The usual remedy is to use the overlapping fullbacks as an 'out ball' or to pull the opposing fullbacks out wide allowing Duff and Dempsey to cut inside into space. Without the fullbacks we have little width and teams find us easy to defend against, with the opposing midfield simply dropping deep to stifle our creativity.

So should we be worried? Not really. Fulham have been struggling with injuries and this will get better. Upcoming games are also all very winnable (not that it guarantees anything) with lots of home games. Fulham only need 13 points to reach safety, or in other words four and a bit wins, which with so much of the season remaining is extremely possible. Finally, the teams below us are not very good. Hull, Pompey and Burnley look the most likely to go down, and will probably all sabotage their own seasons with a combination of poor defending and turgid displays.

Wednesday will be interesting. Pompey are struggling on and off the field and have lost their best player. Fulham are looking to end their losing streak. The bookies will favour Fulham, but I am worried about Avram Grant. There is no doubt that he is a good manager, lets just hope Roy can outclass him in a tactical battle.  On Saturday we will face a resurgent (sort of) Bolton under the guidance of Owen Coyle. This will be a tough test, and whilst I dont think Fulham have much of a chance, you never know.

Ultimately, injuries have forced our season off track in terms of the league. I for one hope that we go all out in the cup competitions as our premier league status is fairly secure and finishing 16-10 is certainly not the end of the world when you consider where we were a mere two years ago.

White Noise

Grant can't rule out deadline day departures

By Soccernet staff

February 1, 2010

Portsmouth manager Avram Grant admits he cannot guarantee that Monday's transfer window deadline day will not bring any more departures from the cash-strapped, rock bottom Premier League club.

Grant was furious on Friday when he discovered Younes Kaboul and Asmir Begovic had been offered to Tottenham behind his back. The Begovic deal subsequently collapsed but with Kaboul now at White Hart Lane, Pompey's already slim chances of avoiding relegation have taken yet another nosedive.

With only loan players an option following the partial lifting of the transfer embargo by the Premier League last week, the chaotic state of life at Fratton Park has been laid bare for all to see. And, after watching his side turn in a spirited performance but ultimately lose 2-0 at Manchester City today, Grant confirmed he has no idea what tomorrow will bring.

"I cannot clarify anything because it is changing every hour,'' he told BBC TV's Match of the Day. "I don't think we will lose any more players but I didn't think players would leave before and we lost one of our best, so I cannot guarantee it.''

Grant was cryptic when it came to his own position, although it seems the former Chelsea boss is committed to trying to steer Portsmouth through this hugely troubling time.

Wages are due to be paid on Monday - a day late - out of the £6million they are said to be receiving from Kaboul. But the threat of administration hangs over the cash-strapped south coast outfit and Grant knows anything is possible in the battle to survive.

"We need to do something to ensure the club will survive,'' he said. "The club is important. It is a city with a team. It is not like in London where they have teams with a city. Portsmouth belongs to the people and we need to do everything because they are good for English football.'' Grant will prepare his side for Wednesday's visit to Fulham knowing a trip to title contenders Manchester United is looming next weekend. And, for now at least, he is determined to deflect attention away from himself.

"It is not good we lost players. I am not happy with it. I don't like it. But what can I do?'' he said. "This is the situation. I am not the issue. The issue is the club and this city. As long as I am here I will do everything that I can.

"Who knows how long I will be here? Nobody does How long will Roberto Mancini be at Manchester City. This is the life of a manager. I came here to build something. I am still trying to do it. We can either give up or fight. And I am not giving up.''

Abbotsbury White

Here is confirmation that we have signed the young Liverpool lad,he may have lost his way a bit of late but was stated by Uefa that he was one of the top ten prospects in Europe.
Kicking around on a piece of ground in your home town.