The January transfer window is very nearly upon us all, and a second opportunity for Slavisa Jokanovic to chop and change his Fulham squad this season is close to prevailing itself.
No department in the squad is exempt from scrutiny, and though some areas have considerably more depth than others, no member of our fold is truly safe from the circus of speculation which walks hand-in-hand with every transfer period.
The press, as we’re all begrudgingly aware, are exquisite at plucking stories out of thin air and rustling up food for thought, but there’s certainly no smoke without fire. So in order to get our appetites whetted for a frantic opening month in 2018, here are 4 rumoured links, tangible or fictitious, which have arisen thus far for the Whites.
IN – Ryan Kent
According to the Mirror (via Express), Fulham are allegedly interested in snagging Liverpool’s Ryan Kent on loan in January. The 21-year-old is currently plying his trade for German Bundesliga outfit SC Freiburg, although his parent employers at Anfield are mulling over potentially recalling the winger in the new year. However the Cottagers are not the only club in the hunt for his signature, as fellow Championship outfits Leeds United and Middlesbrough have also been touted in the battle for his promising, yet stuttering services.
Fulham fans may scratch their heads to why the club would be willing to snap-up yet another wide-man, considering that the set-up is already inundated with a vast array of competent representatives. but there’s nothing like a little more competition for places, right?
IN – Ben Woodburn
Returning back to Merseyside yet again, Liverpool attacker Ben Woodburn could be up for grabs in January as it’s surfaced – according to a report published by Chronicle Live – that AFC Sunderland are hoping to land the 18-year-old Welsh international on a temporary basis. Now, Fulham may not have been directly pinpointed as an active suitor, but given the club’s tepid offensive options, perhaps a dose of fresh enthusiasm in the shape of Woodburn would transform their fortunes in-front of the target where strikers are concerned.
A solid Championship platform to perform on for the teenage hit-man could prove beneficial to both parties involved, as regular first-team action would presumably only bolster Woodburn’s development and confidence dramatically. For now, though, it appears that Woodburn’s short-term future resides within the Black Cats’ clutches, but maybe, just maybe, Fulham could pounce into the frame to snatch the proficient youngster out of their primed, salivating jaws.
IN – Steven Caulker
On December 28th, BBC Sport disclosed the news that Queens Park Rangers’ defender Steven Caulker left the club on mutual terms after a turbulent spell at Loftus Road recently. Caulker, 25, had not played for the ‘R’s’ since September, although there’s no doubting that the hefty centre-half is a professional of sufficient calibre and pedigree, so he could well be exactly what’s needed down by the river.
Ultimately, Caulker is without a club and could be picked-up for free at any given moment. Fulham have had their frailties at the back throughout the campaign and fans have been harping for a rugged, capable addition to waltz through the door to shore-up our leaky defence. Capped once by England in 2012, the former Spurs and Cardiff City man knows how to reach the game’s shimmering pinnacle, and it also goes without saying that disproving QPR’s judgement and solidarity would only make signing Caulker a sweeter prospect, if it were to come to any conceivable fruition, of course.
OUT – Ryan Sessegnon
Amid interest from Premier League outfits Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester United and Southampton, it has recently become apparent that Fulham’s flourishing left wing-back Ryan Sessegnon is also attracting interest from further afield in Europe. La Liga giants Real Madrid are readying themselves to keep track of the highly sought-after 17-year-old after supposedly sending scouts to monitor the starlet’s performances for the Whites – according to a report published by The Guardian.
An asset to Fulham and regarded as one of the club’s finest products by supporters and officials alike, any club baying to lure his auspicious talents will have a tough task on their hands. The Whites will be understandably reluctant to part ways with the adaptable defender and will demand a juicy, eye-watering figure in return for their compliance in any proposed deal.