Thursday, 2 July 2009

Fantasy Transfer XI

With the transfer window wide open, I thought I'd put forward a feasible squad of acquisitions for a Fulham team getting ready to improve their squad to push on through Europe for debate. The emphasis has been on value for money though, so it's more 'budget' than 'fantasy'.

GK - Joe Hart
Seemingly surplus to requirements at Man City, Hart is a good young keeper with plenty of character. England's U21 keeper may be available on a loan and would put some real pressure on the majestic, but 37-year-old, Mark Schwarzer.

EDIT - Just found out Hart has already gone on loan to Birmingham! How about Scott Carson from WBA then?

RB - Gary Neville
A controversial choice. He's not got many fans as a person - Comrade Neville is reaching the end of his career - but he is a proven winner. He's only played a handful of games in the past two seasons, but he will add some passion to a side that seems remarkably lacking in heart at times. He shouldn't cost too much either.

LB - Gareth Bale
A tidy player who scored against Fulham a few seasons ago, Bale isn't fancied by Harry Redknapp and would probably be available for £3m, which isn't bad for a 19 year old with 20 international caps. Famously he has played a record 24 Premier League games for Spurs without being on the winning side, but that's hardly the fault of the left back.

CB - David Wheater
An imposing force in the Boro back line last season, who went down because of a lack of firepower rather than a porous defence. He's not averse to scoring the odd important goal either. If he's not interested in a move, perhaps his partner Robert Huth fancies moving back to South West London.

CB - Sean St Ledger
The PNE centre half also has a gob on him, as shown in the Big Ron Manager programme, but he has matured a great deal in the past couple of seasons and also has the eye for a goal. He has won player of the season awards while at Deepdale and forced himself into the Republic of Ireland squad. Could be worth a tickle at £1.5m.

CM - Gary O'Neil
Can play on the right as well as in the centre, O'Neil has a Premier League pedigree and is keen to move back down south. He won't improve on what's there, but could be a good price squad player.

CM - Kevin Nolan

Yes, he's only just signed for Newcastle, but they need to clear their decks a bit. An eye for goal and a tidy passer, he could be a good foil for fellow scouser Danny Murphy in the middle of the park. I nearly went for Alan Smith, but I only rated him as a striker rather than a midfielder.

RW - Ross Wallace
Another Preston player, Ross Wallace was one of the best players in the Championship last season in my opinion. Tricky on the ball and a great dead ball taker, the only problem with his game is the suspensions he racks up after taking his shirt off celebrating goals. He's still got 4 years on his contract though, so could cost £4m.

LW - Chris Brunt
The annual shopping trip to the Hawthorns could do worse than come back with this winger who hits the ball so sweetly. A Northern Ireland international, Brunt will be another good addition to the squad.

FW - Eidur Gudjohnsen
With Barcelona looking to offload the Icelandic striker, it actually seems Fulham have a chance to sign a truly world class striker. Would transform the team, even if he was the only player to sign and give Fulham a genuine goal threat, although his goal tally in recent years, largely coming off the bench, are in the Zamora region.

FW - David Nugent
I was going to suggest Ruud van Nistelrooy, but I think his wages might be too expensive. Plus he's injury prone. So what about Nuge - the man with a 100% goalscoring record for England? I've always been a fan of Nugent. He's fast. He works hard and he can finish. It's not worked out for him at Pompey and he could probably do with a new challenge to kick start his career.

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