Author Topic: Tuesday Fulham Stuff (02.02.10)  (Read 12876 times)

White Noise

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Re: Tuesday Fulham Stuff (02.02.10)
« Reply #20 on: February 02, 2010, 06:26:38 AM »

Beattie’s £2m Fulham move falls through as Stoke dawdle over deal

Published 23:13 01/02/10

By Alan Nixon

James Beattie is stuck with Stoke City after Fulham failed to sign him for £2million – because he could not reach London to have a medical.

Beattie, 31, has been looking to leave since his bust-up with boss Tony Pulis and was ready to pack his bags at the team hotel on Wearside, but it was too late to make it to the capital for vital checks.

The far-travelled forward needed a medical as he was looking for a two-and-a-half year contract and Fulham owner Mohamed Al Fayed demands stringent checks before parting with his cash.

Stoke took too long to accept Fulham’s offer, holding up the transfer in a piece of brinkmanship that cost them the sale.

Pulis will now have to carry on working with Beattie despite their heated dispute in the Arsenal dressing room and his failed exit will please neither man.

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Re: Tuesday Fulham Stuff (02.02.10)
« Reply #21 on: February 02, 2010, 06:28:03 AM »

Fulham were arguably the day's busiest club, signing Roma striker Stefano Okaka and Aston Villa defender Nicky Shorey on loan, and also snapping up Liverpool starlet Christopher Buchtmann on an 18-month contract

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Re: Tuesday Fulham Stuff (02.02.10)
« Reply #22 on: February 02, 2010, 06:30:51 AM »

Smalling a snip at £12million, says Aaron Hughes

Published 23:00 31/01/10

By John Cross

Chris Smalling had another nightmare in front of his new boss - but was still tipped to be a £12m bargain.

Sir Alex Ferguson was at Craven Cottage to watch his new signing, having been at White Hart Lane last week to see Fulham lose at Tottenham.

Fulham defender Smalling was undone by Peter Crouch at Spurs and was exposed by Aston Villa striker Gabby Agbonlahor beating him to a near-post cross on Saturday.

On the face of it, England under-21 defender Smalling may already be looking like an expensive signing struggling to live up to his potential in the glare of publicity following his incredible rise to prominence.
But Fulham team mate Aaron Hughes insists that 20-year-old Smalling will prove to be money well spent after agreeing to join United on a four-year contract from this summer.

Northern Ireland defender Hughes said: “I think we’ll look back in a few years and see it as a bargain.

“When Manchester United and Arsenal come in, they’re no mugs, they’ve watched him, he’s been in the under-21s and I think United will look back and say they stole him.

“You wouldn’t know that he’s just signed a four year contract at Manchester United. He’s a quiet lad, he just goes about his business and if anyone deserves the success then it’s him.

“He came here from non-league at Maidstone two years ago, got his head down, worked really, really hard and you can see the progression he’s made in such a short space of time.”

Fulham boss Roy Hodgson insisted Ferguson would not have been worried about Smalling finishing up on the losing side.

Hodgson added: “I know Sir Alex thinks very, very highly of him and I think he would have been very impressed with his composure, very impressed with the way he dealt once or twice with the long balls over the top of his head chased by the speedy Agbonlahors, Downings, Ashley Youngs.

“He, like myself, would have preferred to have seen him get his head on that cross but like me he’ll understand it was a clever piece of play by Agbonlahor.

“I would have thought Sir Alex went home thinking; that lad is still the player I think he is and I expect he’ll hope that he’ll go on playing for us because in every game he plays for us, he’s learning enormously.”

Offline whitejc

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Re: Tuesday Fulham Stuff (02.02.10)
« Reply #23 on: February 02, 2010, 07:54:51 AM »
Where are they now: Andrejs Stolcers?

Andrejs Stolcers has moved from Bath City to Hayes and Yeading on a free transfer.

I remember the optimism about our new Latvian arrival when he sealed a fine win at the Hawthorns with Fulham’s third goal against West Brom having come on as a second half substitute. A decade later and he’s earning a living in non-league football.

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Re: Tuesday Fulham Stuff (02.02.10)
« Reply #24 on: February 02, 2010, 07:59:44 AM »

Fulham sign Shorey, Okaka and Buchtmann 

Shorey, Okaka and Buchtmann will bolster Roy Hodgson's options

Fulham completed three signings on the last day of the January transfer window as Nicky Shorey, Stefano Okaka and Christopher Buchtmann all arrived.

Aston Villa left-back Shorey, 27, and highly-rated 20-year-old Roma striker Okaka are on loan until the summer.

Fulham have an option to make Shorey's move permanent and extend Okaka's stay by a further year when it expires.

Liverpool left-back Buchtmann, 17, has penned an 18-month deal and concludes the London club's mid-season activity.

Shorey began his professional career at Leyton Orient before moving to Reading in 2001.

He played an integral role in helping the Royals gain promotion to the Premier League in 2006 and made his full England debut against Brazil at Wembley in 2007.

Shorey gained his second cap against Germany before signing a three-year deal with Villa in 2008.

He was a regular in his first season at Villa Park but slipped down the pecking order following the arrival of Stephen Warnock last summer.

Shorey went on loan to Nottingham Forest earlier this season and played nine times before Villa boss Martin O'Neill recalled him last week.

O'Neill has now allowed him to join Fulham, whose first-choice left-back Paul Konchesky is injured.

And Fulham boss Roy Hodgson will have more left-sided backup in the form of Buchtmann.

The German youth international, who joined Liverpool from Borussia Dortmund in 2008, helped the Anfield club's to the 2009 FA Youth Cup final.

He also played a key role in his country's triumph at the 2009 European Under-17 Championship.

Italy Under-21 international Okaka played in both Europa League games between Roma and Fulham this season, scoring in Roma's 2-1 win at the Olympic Stadium.

He also scored a late winner for Roma with an audacious backheel in their 2-1 win over Siena on Sunday.

Roma boss Claudio Ranieri said: "Stefano is a great lad. He has been at Roma for five years and I believe the experience in England could mark a turning point in his career.

"He can do a lot more and the Premier League will give us back a much stronger player."

Okaka made his first-team debut for Roma in 2005 and scored his first goal for the club in September 2006.

The forward, who was loaned out to Modena and Brescia last season, said: "I have grown thanks to the advice of my team-mates, but to have a leap in quality, it is crucial for me to go to England and play in the Premier League.

"I hope I can return stronger than before."

Okaka completed a medical last week and Hodgson revealed the club had been monitoring the striker long before his the clubs met in Europe.

"We've monitored him for a long time, before we were drawn against Roma in Europe," said Hodgson, who has been keen to boost his strikeforce following injuries to Andy Johnson and Clint Dempsey.

"His name was well known to our scouting staff."

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Re: Tuesday Fulham Stuff (02.02.10)
« Reply #25 on: February 02, 2010, 08:08:59 AM »
Fulham    v    Portsmouth

Fulham are likely to name Stefano Okaka, who has signed on loan from Roma, amongst their substitutes.

Another new loan signing, Nicky Shorey, is expected to take his place in the squad and Dickson Etuhu has returned from the Africa Cup of Nations.

Portsmouth boss Avram Grant may again make a host of changes following his side's defeat at Manchester City.

But David James is expected to continue in goal and Quincy Owusu-Abeyie may make his first his start for the club.



Suspended: None Doubtful: None

Injured: Dempsey, Johnson & Pantsil (all knee), Konchesky (ankle)


Suspended: None Doubtful: Belhadj, Kanu & Yebda (all Africa Cup of Nations)

Injured: Brown (back), Diop (hamstring)

While Portsmouth seemed to have lurched from one crisis to another over the past 18 months, Fulham have made serene and steady progress under the stewardship of Roy Hodgson.

The weekend saw Portsmouth not only lose out on another three points, but lose their most valuable asset in Younes Kaboul, who was sold to Tottenham Hotspur against the wishes of manager Avram Grant.

Although they lost the rags v riches encounter against Manchester City, the players at least showed some fire and spirit as the club comes apart at the seams around them.

An insipid defeat to Aston Villa on Saturday was out of character for Fulham and saw them lose for the first time in 11 matches at Craven Cottage, a record they had protected since September.

Five defeats on the spin has yet to set the alarm bells ringing, but such is the concertina-like appearance of the bottom half of the Premier League this season they are now only seven points off the relegation places.

When in a slump, though who better to face than Portsmouth, who continue to unravel at an alarming rate, although the sale of Kaboul at least meant the players could finally be paid, for now.


• Fulham have won three and drawn one of their last four Premier League meetings with Portsmouth.

• Fulham won the encounter earlier this season at Fratton Park thanks to a goal from Bobby Zamora.

• The overall record between the two sides is: Fulham have 13 wins, Portsmouth 23 and there have been 18 draws.


• On Saturday Fulham suffered their first defeat at Craven Cottage since they succumbed 1-0 to Arsenal on 26 September, a run of 11 matches.

• The Cottagers have failed to win any of their last seven league games and have not scored in their last three matches.


• Portsmouth have won just one of their last seven league games (W1, D2, L4).

• Their total of 15 points after 22 games is Portsmouth's lowest-ever return at this stage of a Premier League season.

• Pompey have scored 19 league goals this season, the joint worst record in the league along with Wolves.


Zamora: 11 goals (6 league); Dempsey: 7 goals (6 league)

Piquionne: 6 goals (3 league); Boateng: 4 goals (3 league)

Referee: Anthony Taylor

Assistant referees: Mick McDonough & Phil Sharp

Fourth official: Alan Wiley

Fulham (L0-2, Aston Villa, h): Schwarzer, Hughes, Smalling, Hangeland, Kelly (Riise 74), Duff, Murphy, Baird, Davies (Gera 24), Zamora, Nevland (Elm 65). Subs not used: Zuberbuhler, Stoor, Greening, Dikgacoi.

Portsmouth (L0-2 v Man City, a): James, Vanden Borre, Ben-Haim, Wilson, Hreidarsson (Finnan 27), Mullins (Owusu-Abeyie 85), Basinas, Jamie O'Hara, Webber (Piquionne 77), Utaka, Boateng. Subs not used: Ashdown, Hughes, Ritchie, Sowah.


Portsmouth 0-1 Fulham (15 August 2009)

Fulham scorer: Zamora 13

Offline whitejc

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Re: Tuesday Fulham Stuff (02.02.10)
« Reply #26 on: February 02, 2010, 09:01:00 AM »
Fulham star set for bust-up with boss
Feb 2 2010 By Paul Warburton

FULHAM are ready for a bust-up with John Pantsil over the date of the crocked defender’s return from injury.

The Ghanaian international is already seething because he’s missed his country’s glory run in the African Cup of Nations, and his manager reckons he’s got more trouble on his hands when Pantsil gets closer to fitness after suffering cruciate damage.

Roy Hodgson said: “John will push it to the limit.

“He won’t be taking another week just in case. He’ll be the one trying to nick a week and arguing with the physios to let him loose – and we’ve got to be careful with him.”

The right-back, signed from West Ham as part of the £6million joint deal with Bobby Zamora in the summer of 2008, got caught in the Boxing Day clash with Chelsea by Didier Drogba – and suffered the injury that leaves him five weeks away from action.

But if he’s champing at the traces now – he’d better watch his step if he doesn’t want to fall out with his manager.

Hodgson said: “John will have to toe the line, and another five weeks from now will give us a better idea. I think we have to be grateful he didn’t need an operation.”

Offline whitejc

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Re: Tuesday Fulham Stuff (02.02.10)
« Reply #27 on: February 02, 2010, 09:59:42 AM »
Fulham On the Slide, but Here's Why they Will Avoid Relegation Fears

Fulham's supporters have good reason to fear a relegation battle this season. The club's 2-0 defeat against Aston Villa on Saturday was their fifth in succession in the top flight.It is a dreadful run of results which is a world away from the euphoria of their 3-0 win over Manchester United in mid December. Manager Roy Hodgson admitted Fulham were poor against Aston Villa - yet FanHouse believes the Cottagers will be safe from relegation this season. And here's six reasons explaining why.

Roy Hodgson:
The canny manager is a clever operator and will not allow the club to slip back to their old ways. Fulham supporters will need no reminding they were perennial relegation battlers under previous managers Chris Coleman and Lawrie Sanchez. Hodgson is under no illusions that Fulham's results have been down to bad luck. The normally mild-mannered manager was openly critical of his side's display against Villa. He said: "We've suffered a bad home defeat and don't feel good about that, but we weren't diabolical. We're suffering from our injury situation but we were disappointed with the manner in which we conceded those goals." Hodgson is widely regarded as one of the best managers in Europe and if Fulham need to get out of trouble, then he has the technical knowledge to help them.

The Spirit of 2008:
When Hodgson took over the reins from Lawrie Sanchez, many football fans had Fulham nailed on for relegation. Yet somehow he managed to turn their losing streak around and the players adopted a winning mentality which effectively saved their season and maintained their Premier League status. Victory at Fratton Park in 2008 sparked scenes of jubilation and to this day, supporters talk about those 90 minutes as a defining moment in the club's history. That spirit is still present at Fulham and, until recently, most evident in games at Craven Cottage. The club have beaten both Manchester United and Liverpool at their traditional ground in west London and it's those results which keep them out of the relegation zone.

Current Form:
While their results are a cause for concern, performances have not been too bad. Against Villa they switched off and were punished before half time. Against Tottenham last Tuesday night they were unlucky not to open the scoring and had further chances late in the game. In their previous match at Blackburn, they again lacked the killer touch in attack. They have now gone three league games without scoring a goal and that is a headache for Hodgson ,but he will suggest it is simply a blip and will point to a 3-1 victory over Accrington Stanley in the FA Cup. The match was a potential banana skin, yet they came though unscathed.

Return of Key Men:
It is no coincidence Fulham's goalless and winless streak happened at a time when their influential striker Bobby Zamora was ruled out with a shoulder injury. The former West Ham striker has now recovered and is gingerly edging his way back to match fitness. Andrew Johnson is also closing in on a return. The England international will no doubt be spurred on by Zamora's excellent form and looking to match his team-mate's scoring exploits. The loss of American international Clint Dempsey is a blow, but Hodgson's squad is large enough to cope.

The Defence:
It may seem a contradiction in terms, but Fulham do have a strong defence, particular at centre back and in goal. Chris Smalling has been tipped to have a bright future and explains why Sir Alex Ferguson has lavished about £7m on him. Giant defender Brede Hangeland was also highly sought after and will offer a calming influence at the back. Aaron Hughes gives Hodgson versatility and has developed a good understanding with Hangeland. Goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer is another reason for Fulham to be optimistic. The Australian has been in excellent form since he arrived on a free transfer in May 2008.

The Relegation Rivals:
Fulham are in 11th place in the league table and have a cushion of seven points over Burnley, who are third from bottom. That shows how tight the league table is at the moment. Portsmouth's position at the foot of the table renders them favourites for relegation, so the remaining two relegation places will probably be contested by Wolves, Burnley, Stoke, West Ham and Bolton. Fulham cannot rely on the mantra of being too good to go down. It's just the sides below them are too bad to stay up.

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Re: Tuesday Fulham Stuff (02.02.10)
« Reply #28 on: February 02, 2010, 10:01:08 AM »
Kamara completes Celtic loan switch

Fulham striker Diomansy Kamara has joined Celtic on a six-month loan with an option for a permanent deal.

Kamara, 29, had played under Celtic boss Tony Mowbray at West Brom and moves to Parkhead hoping for regular first-team football after finding opportunities limited at Fulham.

Kamara told Celtic's official website: "I'm delighted to sign for Celtic and I am very much looking forward to joining up with the manager and my new team-mates.

"Celtic is a magnificent football club. I will be looking to do my very best to contribute and bring the supporters success and hopefully enjoy a long future with the club."

Netherlands defender Edson Braafheid was another player to join Celtic on loan on Monday. Braafheid had been at Bayern Munich and moves to Scotland in search of regular first-team football ahead of the World Cup.

Celtic have also announced the signing of 18-year-old Paul Slane from Motherwell on a four-year deal.

Motherwell chairman John Boyle told the club's official website: "We have tried and tried to get Paul to sign a long- term contract but, much to our extreme disappointment, he has continually refused.

"We have offered the player improved competitive terms in line with other progressing youngsters at the club but both personally and through his agent, he has refused.

"Paul has been at the club for six years and we have financed his development and nurtured his talent, culminating in his senior debut at the end of last season.

"We have also stuck by and supported him over those years through both personal issues and injury and felt we were due some degree of loyalty for our efforts. Sadly he has chosen to refuse our offers and move on to Celtic."

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Re: Tuesday Fulham Stuff (02.02.10)
« Reply #29 on: February 02, 2010, 10:17:21 AM »

Club Focus - Fulham - Has the transfer window addressed the Whites’ problems?

By Matt Domm

Fulham’s knack of providing out-of-sorts strikers with the confidence they require continued at Craven Cottage on Saturday, as Gabriel Agbonlahor was handed two goals courtesy of the Whites’ centre-backs, Brede Hangeland and Chris Smalling.

For the first goal, both players combined. Hangeland, caught in no man’s land trying to leave the ball to his goalkeeper, decided not to make a decision and the ball went out for an Aston Villa throw in a dangerous position. From the throw, Stiliyan Petrov swung the ball in, and Smalling, taking Roy Hodgson’s advice to respect the opposition too literally, stepped aside to let Agbonlahor out-jump him to nod past Mark Schwarzer. The game was lost a few minutes later and this time Hangeland can take the full blame. Agbonlahor, known usually for his pace rather than his strength, swatted the Norwegian aside to create himself a good five yards of space - the rest was history. Such mistakes from the centre-backs are rare, however, and the real issue lies with the fact that Fulham were never going to get even one goal back with two more centre-backs playing on the right and left of defence. Having to replace both marauding full-backs with out-and-out defenders has nullified any attacking width and has put a stop to the team’s creating of chances.

Before January, the need for another striker was the prominent issue. However, with the faces of John Pantsil and Paul Konchesky not likely to be seen for another couple of months, combined with the incredible loss of form since the pair’s injuries, switched this emphasis to finding cover for both full-backs. Hodgson seems prepared to give Stephen Kelly the nod to replace Pantsil on the right (although he has been played out of position on the left in recent fixtures, to little effect), but the manager has apparently identified the need to cover Konchesky by bringing in Villa’s Nicky Shorey on loan. In a window where Fulham generally opt for loan deals over full transfers, the capture of Shorey, while it isn’t the ideal of bringing Konchesky back, represents a solid deal and a definite strengthening of the side. At the very least, Shorey will go beyond the half-way line when attacking and provide options for whomever Hodgson selects on the left wing. More importantly, a full-back who is competent going forward will provide vital width and take the pressure off Danny Murphy as the sole source of attack. Although Konchesky is prone to the odd lapse of concentration, the side is far stronger with him in it, and Shorey should at least compensate for his absence.

This has not stopped Hodgson pursuing his interest in Stefano Okaka and the loan deal was finally wrapped up yesterday morning. The details seem to give Fulham the opportunity of extending the deal for next season too, if, of course, Roma do not want him back instead. Okaka is a good prospect who sealed his move with a stunning back-heel effort for Roma at the weekend, but the deal appears to be far better for the Italians than Fulham. There are two ways the forward’s next few months can go. Either he sets the Premier League alight and fires Fulham to a comfortable top-half finish, or he doesn’t adapt quickly enough and ends up with few, if any, goals come May. If it is the former, Roma will snatch him back for their first team next season, and with the latter, the Whites send him back and that is the end of it. Whichever way it is, there is little chance of Okaka playing for Fulham next season.

Both have been signed in time for the visit of Portsmouth on Wednesday night, although knowing Hodgson the two will likely be blended into action slowly. Of course, things can hardly get worse than the current defensive situation, so this writer will be interested to see whether the manager puts his faith in the left-back from the off. Having lost a hot prospect in Smalling this window, the club has snapped up 17-year-old German wing-back Christopher Buchtmann for a nominal fee. Recognised as a strong European prospect, the German could be one to watch for the future, but his signing doesn’t represent an immediate improvement to the squad.

That concludes a somewhat unconvincing window in which several players left and not many came the other way. Time will tell if the squad’s issues have been fixed, but at least Hodgson didn’t panic. He can leave that up to the fans.

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Re: Tuesday Fulham Stuff (02.02.10)
« Reply #30 on: February 02, 2010, 10:19:18 AM »

The January sales

by Dan on February 2, 2010

If you filled a room with football people and asked them about the January transfer window, you’d be hardpressed to find too many supporters. I saw Niall Quinn on Sky yesterday morning wondering aloud as to which other business would impose such restrictions on hiring and firing practices during the year. The complaint from managers is similarly practical: the best players aren’t available and you often pay over the odds for what you can get in January.

Love it or loathe it, the window’s with us and probably will be for a while yet. The messageboards tend to go through several mood swings on transfer deadline day: extreme optimism, followed by euphoria as we announce a signing, and then bouts of pessimism. It still seems a little early to analyse Fulham’s transfer activity as the dust settles, but for the most part I’m happy with the direction that Roy’s taking the team.

His three signings yesterday seem to have addressed three of the key areas where we were light. Nicky Shorey is an England international left back and left full-back is one of the places where we’ve been struggling of late. Bringing somebody in suggests that we might be without Paul Konchesky for a little while – and the manner in which both Aston Villa’s goals came down the right on Saturday suggests that we badly miss Konch. Shorey’s got a point to prove, too. His career’s rather gone off the rails since he left Reading and, even if talk of an England recall seems a little far-fetched, Shorey’s in need of first-team football.

Stefano Okaka has come in on loan, putting an end to a protracted transfer saga that has run and run throughout January. There seems to be some confusion over whether Fulham have an option to sign the Italian on a permanent basis. Sky reported his agent suggesting that was the case, although over sources talk about clauses to extend the loan. Okaka’s raw, for sure, but he’s got pace and a lively quality that could make our front line a little less predictable, especially in light of the rather disappointing departure of Diomansy Kamara to Celtic.

Hodgson’s final deadline day signing was certainly one for the future. Christopher Buchtmann has been highlighted regarded as a promising German youth international and his versatility means he can play in several positions, either in defence or on the wing. His departure from Liverpool had their forums spewing with anger and contributors suggesting that it is another sign of a club in decline. You can sense the hand of Malcolm Elias in this deal – and we can only hope that young Buchtmann can justify the buzz around his signing by the end of his 18-month deal.

I’m still a little ambivalent on the Smalling deal, which we’ve addressed before. There’s still something nagging away at me that selling our brightest young prospect in years to the first serious offer strikes me as distinctly unambitious. Whilst £12m seems like a good deal for someone with few first-team games under his belt, imagine what he could have been worth with another season in the side? The fact that Hodgson’s had to deal in loans and youth prospects suggests that the Smalling money wasn’t likely to be reinvested in the side and, whilst I remain fully behind Roy, releasing some funds might have helped to halt our recent winless run.

Hodgson has at least managed to trim the squad further. Seol, who had drifted away from the first-team picture, whilst Adam Watts and Joe Anderson have also moved on. Matthew Briggs has certainly made an impression on loan at Leyton Orient and Wayne Brown will be hoping to do so with Bristol Rovers. The latter might be a little disappointed not to have forced his way in the first-team picture, but a loan offers him a chance of something a little more competitive than matches with the stiffs. As David Stockdale has proven, it could be a great opportunity to build confidence before coming into the team.

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Re: Tuesday Fulham Stuff (02.02.10)
« Reply #31 on: February 02, 2010, 10:24:08 AM »

O'Hara: Craven Cottage win can get us back in the mix

02 February 2010

By Jordan Cross

The midfielder wouldn't have returned to Pompey if he didn't think his team could get out of trouble this season.

And he feels a trip to wobbling Fulham tomorrow could provide the Blues with the perfect opportunity to get their fight for survival ADVERTISEMENTback on track.

O'Hara saw enough from Sunday's defeat at Manchester City to draw confidence going into the clash at Craven Cottage.

Pompey carved out a host of clear-cut chances at the City of Manchester Stadium, but paid for their profligacy and sloppy defending.

There was enough about their general play to be encouraged about moving forward.

Avram Grant's side, though, quite simply have to turn positive performances into a tangible reward.

Taking on a team who have lost their past five games represents a perfect chance to do that.

Roy Hodgson's side also have injury worries going into the game with the likes of Andrew Johnson, Clint Dempsey, John Pantsil (all knee) and Paul Konchesky (ankle) sidelined.

Fulham may have been on a downward slump, but they still represent a tough opponent on home soil – a place they hadn't played in the league for over a month before the weekend.

O'Hara doesn't see why his team shouldn't have confidence in picking up a return from their trip to the capital, though.

He said: 'We have tough games coming up, but big games.

'Fulham have just been beaten at home. There is no reason we can't go there and get a result.

'We need to pick up points. There is a long way to go still.

'If we can pick up three points that will get us right back into the mix.

'We are six points adrift, but we are still in there and have to keep fighting.

'We have to believe as a team and as a club we can get out of trouble.

'I think we played well at Man City. They are a massive club with fantastic players.

'They are going to be up there challenging for titles.

'We gave them a run for their money, though.

'Apart from the soft goals, I don't think they created much more than us.

'We have to believe in ourselves and believe we can get something out of the Fulham game.'

O'Hara's return has offered a bright spot among the sea of negativity Pompey fans have had to digest lately.

Just as refreshing is the 23-year-old's attitude.

O'Hara made it clear he was determined to find regular first-team football, and was not happy with fleeting appearances at Spurs.

That led to him agreeing his first loan stay at Pompey back in August.
He made it clear he was not walking away from the Blues' fight for survival when that agreement came to a close midway through January.

It's the sort of commitment that has made him a massive hit with the Fratton faithful.

His never-say-die approach is the sort that is appreciated among supporters, too.

O'Hara said: 'I wouldn't have come back if I thought we were just going to get beat every week.

'I think we have a squad to get out of it.

'City didn't play us off the park and we got caught on the break.

'We have to believe we can get out of it and take our chances when they come.'

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Re: Tuesday Fulham Stuff (02.02.10)
« Reply #32 on: February 02, 2010, 10:30:23 AM »
Bounce Back

Tuesday 2nd February 2010
Fulham FC News 

Fulham return to the Cottage on Wednesday night (Tickets on General Sale)| hoping to get back to winning ways against Portsmouth and following Saturday’s defeat to Aston Villa, defender Aaron Hughes spoke of the disappointment that will spur his Team on tomorrow evening.

“We were disappointed with the goals we gave away but we tried to stick to what we were doing,” explained Hughes. “We kept going but unfortunately we just didn’t get anything from the game and that happens.

“Villa are no mugs. They go about their business well, got their goals and defend very well. It was always going to be a tough game anyway and it was unfortunate we couldn’t get anything from Saturday’s match.”

Hughes highlights two characteristics required to end Fulham’s recent run of defeats which the Whites have shown in abundance this season and the Northern Ireland international is confident one win will get his Team back on track.

“It can happen in this league,” said Hughes. “You can go on a four or five game winning streak and everyone’s jumping around but you must never lose sight of the fact that it can also go the other way, and we know that.

“At the minute we just need a win and I wouldn’t say we’re overly worried about it. We are aware of it and we will do what we can to get ourselves out of it. Sometimes this happens and you’ve got to show a bit of character and strength and just keep going to get out of it.”

The current spate of injuries at the Club means Hughes is currently operating at right back and whilst not his natural playing position, the defender is evidently a true Team player.

“Sometimes you can get away with missing one or two players and shuffle the squad but with Clint, AJ, two full backs out and Simon getting a knock on Saturday - it’s the way it’s going at the moment but hopefully we can get the lads back soon and we’ll be alright.

“We know we have to shuffle round at the moment and the Manger wants me to do a job and that’s fine and I’ll do my best. I’ll do everything I can to help the Team.”

Team-mate Chris Smalling has taken up Hughes’ central defensive berth in recent games and Hughes praised the youngster’s modestly and professionalism in light of his recent transfer to Manchester United and is delighted Smalling will remain at the Cottage until the end of the current season.

“You wouldn’t know he’s just signed for Manchester United in the dressing room," said Hughes. "He’s a quiet lad who just goes about his business and if there’s anyone deserving enough of getting something like that it’s him.

“He’s came in two years ago, kept his head down, listened to what everyone told him and worked really, really hard. He's made such progression in such a short space of time the likes of Manchester United have been keeping tabs on him. It’s come to a point where they’ve made a move and it’s nice that he can stay here until the end of the season.”

Tickets are now on General Sale for Wednesday night’s game at the Cottage. Get behind Roy and the Team as the Whites take on Portsmouth. Buy your tickets online| , by phone ( 0870 442 1234 ) or in person from the Cottage Ticket Office (Open 9-5 weekdays).

Adults from £30
Juniors from £10

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Re: Tuesday Fulham Stuff (02.02.10)
« Reply #33 on: February 02, 2010, 10:31:31 AM »
Back the Boys

Tuesday 2nd February 2010
Fulham FC News

Be amongst the first to see Fulham's new additions when Roy Hodgson's side take on Portsmouth at Craven Cottage this Wednesday evening!

With The Whites still searching for their first win since that memorable 3-0 defeat of Manchester United in mid-December, Wednesday’s game is absolutely vital and your support could make all the difference!

Get behind the team by purchasing your tickets now!
Fulham v Portsmouth ticket info and prices |.

Burnley - Tuesday 9th February (Kick-Off 8pm)
In our second home game in six days, Burnley visit Craven Cottage on Tuesday 9th February (Kick-Off 8pm) in another crucial evening of Barclays Premier League football.
Fulham v Burnley ticket info & prices |.

FA Cup 5th Round - Sunday 14th February (Kick-Off 3pm)
Tickets for The Whites FA Cup 5th Round tie against either Wigan Athletic or Notts County on Sunday 14th February (Kick-Off 3pm) are available now. Season Ticket Holders seats will only be held until 5pm today before being released for General Sale.
Fulham v Notts County or Wigan ticket info & prices |.

FC Shakhtar Donetsk - Thursday 18th February (Kick-Off 8:05pm)
The Whites are back in European action on Thursday 18th February (Kick-Off 8:05pm) when FC Shakhtar Donetsk visit Craven Cottage in the last 32 of the Europa League.
Fulham v Shakhtar Donestsk ticket info & prices |.

Manchester City – On sale from Tuesday 2nd February!
Tickets for the visit of Roberto Mancini’s Manchester City side to Craven Cottage on Saturday 20th March (Kick-Off 3pm) will be available to Season Ticket Holders from 9am on Tuesday 2nd February. Members will be able to purchase their tickets from Thursday 4th February, with any remaining tickets going on General Sale from Tuesday 9th February.
Fulham v Manchester City ticket info & prices |.

Tickets can be purchased online |, in person from the Ticket Office or by calling 0870 442 1234 (option 1).

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Re: Tuesday Fulham Stuff (02.02.10)
« Reply #34 on: February 02, 2010, 10:33:11 AM »

Fulham v Manchester City

Barclays Premier League

Saturday 20th March

Kick-Off 15:00

On-sale dates
Season Ticket Holders   Now on sale (Max 6 tickets)
Fulham Club Members  4th February (Max 6 tickets)
General Sale   11th February (Max 6 tickets)
Buy tickets online|

My First Matchday Package
My First Matchday offers Junior supporters and an accompanying adult the opportunity to see what really goes on behind the scenes at Craven Cottage in the build-up to matchday. Pretend you’re a radio commentator in the press box, run down the tunnel, pretend you’re directing the players from the Manager’s seat in the dugout, interview a guardian in front of the TV interview boards, see our trophy cabinet and even meet a Fulham FC legend! More info and prices|

How to Buy Tickets
buy tickets online  - 7 days a week, 24 hrs a day. Save on booking fees by booking online*
by phone on 0870 442 1234 (option 1) - 7 days a week, 24 hrs a day
in person from the Ticket Office: Mon-Fri 9am-5pm; non-match day Sat 10am-12pm
by fax 0207 384 4810 (download printable form )
by postal application to FFC Ticket Office, Stevenage Road, Fulham, SW6 6HH enclosing a stamped addressed envelope (download printable form )
Seatwave - the official fan-to-fan ticket exchange
Thomas Cook - match breaks for all Fulham FC home games
* Lower booking fees compared to telephone booking

Category A+ prices apply to this match.

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Re: Tuesday Fulham Stuff (02.02.10)
« Reply #35 on: February 02, 2010, 10:35:48 AM »

Chilling proof of recession in Premier League

The January transfer window traditionally culminates in a deadline-day parade of last-minute deals by the desperate, the doomed, and Tottenham Hotspur.
By Paul Kelso, Chief Sports Reporter

Published: 7:45AM GMT 02 Feb 2010

When the window closed with an anti-climactic whimper on Monday however it also offered chilling evidence that the cold economic realities facing the wider economy have finally caught up with football.

Gross spending in the past four weeks across all four divisions in England was about £50 million, the lowest figure since the first year that two-window system was introduced in 2003, when £40 million was spent.

At 5.30pm on Monday, spending by Premier League clubs stood at just £41.5 million, according to accountants KPMG, with around a third of that attributed to Chris Smalling's proposed move from Fulham to Manchester United in the summer for a fee that could eventually total £12 million.

The reduced spending by Premier League clubs is just 20 per cent of the record £190 million of business done in January last year. While almost half of that was attributable to the Manchester City spending spree and Tottenham's rebuilding under new manager Harry Redknapp, this year's figures represent a marked reduction.

While some of the downturn in spending is explained by a growing distaste for January business among leading clubs, the impact of the recession is undoubtedly a significant factor.

Relegation-threatened clubs are typically active in January, but with Portsmouth, Hull and West Ham all financially challenged they were limited players.

Geoff Mesher, head of the KPMG Forensic Sports Industry Team, said football was finally feeling the impact of recession. "Whilst the UK has just recently exited recession it appears that football may just be entering it," he said. "Financial uncertainty still exists for a number of English clubs and many club chairmen will look at the current plight of Portsmouth, facing a winding up order on Feb 10 in the High Court, with concern."

Spending levels this year may reflect a more cautious approach by clubs, but there are also practical reasons connected to the financial crisis that make short-term gambles in the transfer market harder to pull off.

Many clubs have relied in the past on short-term financing from smaller "boutique" lenders, securitised against elements of future income. With the tightening of the credit markets and the collapse of several lenders in this market the options for clubs, many of whom carry significant debt, has narrowed.

"There is definitely a little bit of a hole in the market for short-term finance because some of the providers that operated in this space offering clubs financing on transfer deals are no longer in business," said Chris Lee, head of professional sport, Barclays Corporate, which provides banking services to a number of Premier League clubs.

"Clubs are finding themselves being offered all sorts of alternatives from third parties trying to expedite short-term credit to fund transfers, but interest rates are far bigger than with more established lenders, and the fees can be very high too."

The downturn is accompanied by a growing mood that January is the wrong time to spend money, a view endorse by Sunderland chairman Niall Quinn.

"It looks like it [the January window] was done for the right reasons a few years ago but as time has played out it's just become so difficult and so fraught and you end up gambling. And one of the things at football clubs – and it's playing itself out now down at Portsmouth – when you gamble, sometimes you don't win."

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Re: Tuesday Fulham Stuff (02.02.10)
« Reply #36 on: February 02, 2010, 10:37:23 AM »

Healy in loan move to Ipswich

Sunderland striker David Healy has moved to Ipswich Town on loan until the end of the season.

Monday, 01 February 2010

The 30-year-old Northern Ireland international has made just six appearances for the Black Cats this season, all of them as a substitute.

He has not started a single league game for the club since his £1.5m move from Fulham 18 months ago.

Last month, the Sunderland striker issued a 'come and get me' plea to potential buyers as he looks for a way out of the club.

Healy is now set to link up with his former manager Roy Keane at Portman Road, who are battling against relegation to English football's third tier.

It is the second time Northern Ireland's record goalscorer has signed for Keane after the former Manchester United midfielder took him to Wearside from Fulham in his time as Sunderland boss.

Healy will be joined by Sunderland forward Daryl Murphy who has also agreed to move to the Coca-Cola Championship side on loan until the end of the season.

The 26-year-old, who has nine Republic of Ireland caps, played 27 times for Sunderland last year but has also slipped down the pecking order at the Stadium of Light.

Healy's lack of club football has had an unwelcome effect on the international front, where he lost his place in the starting line-up for the November friendly against Serbia.

It was the first time he had been dropped for a home game at Windsor Park since he made his debut in February 2000.

Healy has scored 35 goals for Northern Ireland.

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Re: Tuesday Fulham Stuff (02.02.10)
« Reply #37 on: February 02, 2010, 10:41:54 AM »

It is a statement of intent by Swansea, who also put an immediate end to Nottingham Forest’s interest in Britton’s fellow midfielder Darren Pratley, who then failed to follow up their initial £1.5m enquiry.

And it was revealed that Angel Rangel – also out of contract this summer – was the subject of a late enquiry from Premier League Fulham.

But Jenkins insisted the club were ready to stand firm in order to give boss Paulo Sousa every chance of maintaining his side’s current top-six standing.

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Re: Tuesday Fulham Stuff (02.02.10)
« Reply #38 on: February 02, 2010, 10:47:44 AM »

Blackwell at the double

Date: 02 February 2010

By James Shield

SHEFFIELD UNITED manager Kevin Blackwell has refused to rule-out the possibility of signing Nyron Nosworthy and Toni Kallio on a permanent basis at the end of the season.

The defensive duo are scheduled to spend the remainder of the campaign on loan at Bramall Lane after completing moves from Sunderland and Fulham before yesterday's transfer deadline.

Speaking ahead of this evening's Championship fixture against Watford, Blackwell said: "I'm delighted that we've been able to bring two quality players here.

"They should prove really good acquisitions and they give us a lot more options at the back.

"Nyron is a centre-half who can also slot-in at right back if required and Toni can fill in through the middle but is usually a left-back.

"Those are the two positions that I had made my top priority and now I honestly believe we've got a squad in place, if everyone stays fit, that can see us right through until the end.

"Hopefully everything will go well for them and although they are only with us temporarily in football it's impossible to predict what might happen."

Kallio, who spent a brief spell with United before Christmas, becomes a free agent in the summer and admitted recently than a new deal is unlikely to be forthcoming.

However, extracting Nosworthy from the Stadium of Light could prove more problematic given the fact that he has only just agreed fresh terms with the Premier League club.

"Nyron is with a top-flight side and he put pen to paper with them before Christmas," Blackwell, who sold Matthew Kilgallon to Sunderland last month, added.

"Him coming here had nothing to do with them taking Killa off us though. It is an entirely separate piece of business."

United, who remained sixth depsite being beaten 3-1 at West Bromwich Albion over the weekend, encounter opponents at Vicarage Road languishing in the lower reaches of the table.

But Blackwell warned: "Watford are going to be tough. They're strong at home and they've had some good results there so we have to be on our guard."

Kallio's arrival softened the blow of seeing former United youngster Kyle Naughton join Middlesbrough on loan from Tottenham Hotspur.

The full-back has failed to command a regular first-team place since completing a lucrative switch to White Hart Lane and Blackwell had made no secret of his desire to lure him back north.

"Kyle is one of us," Blackwell said. "He came through the ranks here and always will be.

"But we've got Toni who can play there for us now and I'm chuffed to bits to get him in."

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Re: Tuesday Fulham Stuff (02.02.10)
« Reply #39 on: February 02, 2010, 10:49:23 AM »

Fulham v Portsmouth: match preview

Read a full match preview of the Premier League game between Fulham and Portsmouth at Craven Cottage on Wednesday Feb 2 2010, kick-off 20.00 GMT.
By John Ley

Published: 9:56AM GMT 02 Feb 2010

Wednesday, February 02

Fulham v Portsmouth
Craven Cottage
Kick-off: 20.00 GMT

Fulham could give debuts to Nicky Shorey, the left-back signed on loan from Aston Villa, and Stefano Okako, the Roma striker, as they look to end a run of five straight losses in the Premier League. But John Pantsil, Paul Konchesky, Clint Dempsey and Andrew Johnson are all missing.

They face a Portsmouth side with one point from their last four League games and five points adrift at the foot of the Premier League. Quincy Owusu-Abeyie could be involved after coming on as a substitute at Manchester City at the weekend. Asmir Begovic has gone but David James remains and the England goalkeeper should continue in goal.

Fulham (4-4-2): Schwarzer; Hughes, Smalling, Hangeland, Shorey; Davies, Murphy, Baird, Duff; Okako, Zamora.
Portsmouth (4-3-3): James; Vanden Borre, Ben-Haim, Wilson, Hreidarsson; Mullins, Basinas, O’Hara; Webber, Utaka, Boateng.
Referee: Anthony Taylor.
Matches: None.

This season: Portsmouth 0 Fulham 1.
Last season: Portsmouth 1 Fulham 1, Fulham 3 Portsmouth 1.

Stat of the game: Portsmouth have failed to beat Fulham in the last four attempts.

Betting tip: Portsmouth are not playing badly; try 1-1 at 5-1.