Saturday, 19 January 2008

A case for optimism?

The first new signing of Woy Hodgson's reign has arrived and several more appear to be on the way. Norwegian International defender Brede Hangeland (pictured) has joined the squad from FC Copenhagen and was part of the line-up that beat Manchester United 1-0 in the 2006/07 Champions League group phase.
As is the want with new managers, Hodgson wants to bring in players he knows he can trust. While managing FK Viking, Hodgson made Hangeland club captain.
While it is unlikely that Hangeland will become captain (at least not straight away) he will hopefully add some much needed pace to the backline.
Although a Norweigan international, Hangeland was actually born in Texas, so should fit right in with FulhamUSA, as will the new striker Eddie Johnson. The American international will provide some bite (and height) to the attack. Johnson's international form is actually better than his domestic form, which sounds worryingly like a certain Mr Healey, but it at least provides some options upfront, work-permit permitting.
Perhaps the most exciting potential signing is Watford's Marlon King, although £5m appears to be at the higher end of the Championship scale. King has dominated defences at the lower level, but never really got a chance to shine in the Premiership after a knee injury wiped him out of most of last season. And that sounds horribly similar to Mr Kamara. Unfortunately worries over this knee injury appears to be holding up the transfer and he won't be around to face Arsenal today.
With these three, all Fulham need now is a holding midfielder, although Hangeland can apparently play there as well. Throughout the season, scoring has not been a problem but conceeding goals has cost Fulham dozens of points. Therefore another defensively-minded player could work wonders. Hopefully it will not be too little, too late.

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