Transfer Talk: Rumours You’ll Hear This January Part V

Cameron Ramsey 29th January 2018
(Photo: Rex Features)

And after weeks of waiting, somebody has finally burst through the door for Fulham during the transfer window, and that is none other than 22-year-old left-back Matt Targett, who has joined the Whites’ promotion chasing cause on a 6-month loan deal from Southampton…phew.

So, now that a new full-back has been covered to present Ryan Sessegnon the undisputed right to dominate the offensive duties on the left flank, what else has risen to the surface from the murky depths of the bottomless, unforgiving sea of media drivel and speculation? Strap in, because here’s another edition of credible or indeed dubious transfer links to marvel and scowl upon during your daily commute.

Oliver Norwood

Though he’s currently on loan at Fulham, Sky Sports revealed that Brighton & Hove Albion have rejected an offer from the Whites to make the Northern Ireland international’s stay at Craven Cottage a permanent one.

A regular in Slavisa Jokanovic’s match-day XI, it’s also believed that the 26-year-old would prefer a prolonged stay at the south-west Londoners, presumably due to the invaluable game-time he’s gaining in the Championship, of course.

Throughout his stint at Fulham, Norwood has competently proven himself as a sturdy member of the midfield cohort. With 5 goals and 2 assists to his name in 28 appearances, there’s no wonder why ‘Slav’ is allegedly eager to keep hold of his influence in the centre of the park.

Norwood’s inclusion in the fold allows the likes of Stefan Johansen, Lucas Piazon and Tom Cairney in particular the freedom to roam and express their creativity, and although the Burnley-born midfielder may not be readily inclined to adventurous, marauding runs, he’s got a heat-seeking missile of a pass on him, a trait which holds his distribution aloft as one of the best in the squad.

Photo: Rex Features

Ruben Rochina

Subject to a report published by HITC, Russian Premier League side Rubin Kazan are said to be in the process of overhauling their squad, and with a number of players primed for the chop, Fulham are allegedly touted as a club which is interested in the club’s Spanish attacking midfielder Ruben Rochina.

Rochina was once of Blackburn Rovers and was contracted to the now League One dwellers from 2011 to 2014, and as the 26-year-old indeed has experience in England, it’s also become apparent that West Ham United are tailing the inventive play-maker alongside La Liga outfit Girona FC, so the Whites are not alone in the hunt for his seemingly redundant signature.

An initial product of Valencia CF, Rochina was snagged by FC Barcelona in his formative years and was a regular starter in the club’s ‘B’ string set-up in the Segunda Division, and although he never managed to grace the turf in-front of a packed Camp Nou, he’s a professional which learnt a sizeable majority of his artistry at the ‘Blaugrana’s’ coveted and world-renowned La Masia academy.

Luke Freeman

If Tom Cairney’s career at Fulham is to come to an end during the next few days, the Whites – according to a report published by Daily Mail – will allegedly go shopping in Shepherd’s Bush to find a replacement, with Queens Park Rangers’ Luke Freeman being earmarked as a worthwhile £4m bargain.

Freeman, 25, has surfaced as one of QPR’s most resourceful midfielders this season having chalked 3 goals and 10 assists in 27 Championship fixtures, and whilst he’s dexterously providing in a deficient Hoops squad, it’s thought that his record could multiply down by the river.

As a result of his creativity, Freeman has been a leading protagonist in 7 more goals than Cairney has this season, an involvement which surely makes him a valuable asset to our close London adversaries, so if ‘Slav’ is planning to charm the former Arsenal reserves man towards the Cottage, he may have some haggling and bartering to do with Ian Holloway, as it’s not going to be a straight forward, seamless deal, that’s for sure.

Luke Freeman tussles with Kevin Macdonald at Loftus Road (Photo: Rex Features)

OUT: Mattias Kait

First-team football is vital to a fledgling player’s development, and though he’s performing competently for Fulham’s U23 set-up, West London Football understand that the Cottagers are keen to ship Mattias Kait out on loan to further his growth.

Contracted to the club until 2019, it’s also believed that lower league outfits have been made aware of his supposed availability on a temporary basis, and the central midfielder, given that he’s presumably hungry to prove himself to Slavisa Jokanovic, would surely relish the prospect of competing for a recognised senior fold.

The 19-year-old Estonian is a regular in Fulham’s PL2 contingent and has provided two assists for Peter Grant’s side to date during the 2017-18 campaign, so though he offers his current teammates chances to grab a goal, perhaps he could replicate or even better upon his record elsewhere.

OUT: Tom Cairney

(Photo: Rex Features)

Once again there seems to be profound unrest around Tom Cairney’s future at Fulham, and as cited in one of our previous articles, the Premier League could be a destination for the Scotland international, with West Bromwich Albion and Newcastle United both supposedly monitoring his availability – however there’s now a third top-flight outfit in the drooling following pack.

According to Sky Sports, West ham United are allegedly lining up a bid worth £15m to tempt the Whites into releasing their midfield maestro, but as we all know and demand as supporters and realists, if he’s going to depart the club a lumpier figure will need to be tabled in order to do so.

The Hammers’ current campaign has been cast in doubt and apprehension, and though they’re sat 11th in the standings to date, their results have been inconsistent and above all unconvincing. The allure of the big time would be too much for most to resist, but considering Fulham are in fine fettle, it’s hard to envision ‘TC’ opting for a move to the London Stadium, especially when David Moyes completely disregards his midfield regiment tactically.

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