The World Cup might mean the rumour mill is still fairly dry, but there’s still been plenty of FFC transfer gossip doing the rounds. Our man Cameron Ramsey takes a look at the possible moves The Whites could be making this summer.
It seems that every single team around us is signing players this transfer window, and we’re yet to even step foot out of the starting block but, as it’s wholly characteristic that our recruitment process starts later than the norm, it surely can’t be long until we see a flurry of jaw-dropping stars rush through the door at Craven Cottage to bolster our ranks for a gruelling 2018-19 campaign in the Premier League.
Our lack of movement hasn’t been without the odd noise or murmur of a compelling transfer link, and as the World Cup is indeed upon us to keep us sane in the close season, we can’t help but envision an underneath gem or a seasoned international talisman being snagged in the (hopefully) not so distant future with a pen and contract at hand as we all, being the ardent Fulham fans that we unquestionably are, need something to shout about after Wembley, of course.
But that’s enough smoke-blowing for one article, so without further delay, it’s time to plunge deep into the juicy, pulpy, somewhat sticky bit of the wholesome pie – or flan – that comprises glorious chunks of transfer rumour and speculation, specifically baked for the Whites. Well, it is food for thought, after all.
Clement Grenier – Guingamp
Clement Grenier, of French outfit Guingamp, could soon be crossing the English Channel to grace the Premier League, as it’s arisen that the calculative attacking midfielder – as per a report published by L’Equipe – could supposedly leave his current employers for as little as £2.6m, a ‘gentleman’s agreement’.
Fulham, alongside top-flight counterparts Everton and Newcastle United, are said to be the English collective that are monitoring the situation closely, and at such a shallow asking price, a frenzy is sure to erupt between the trio of tailing suitors, although it’s also believed that AC Milan, Rennes and Fenerbahce have all been keeping a watchful eye from afar.
It’s thought that Grenier, who’s previously suffered through torrid injury-ridden spells on the sidelines, has been in direct contact with several clubs over the possibility of a summer switch from EAG, and as Slavisa Jokanovic is evidently eager to add true, accomplished quality to his set-up, Grenier could be the bargain buy of the transfer period.
Ivan Cavaleiro – Wolverhampton Wanderers
Sky Sports understands that fellow Premier League new boys and 2017-18 Championship victors Wolverhampton Wanderers have rebuffed a bid in the region of £12m from Fulham for Portuguese trailblazer Ivan Cavaleiro, who was undoubtedly one of the second division’s stand-out performers in the previous term.
Wolves have an imposing Portuguese contingent at their disposal and Cavaleiro, who made the right channel his domain last season as Wolves clinched the title, is an unrivalled member of Nuno Esprito Santo’s starting XI, and if an admiring club was willing to lure him from Molineux, a hefty figure would certainly have to be tabled.
In 46 appearances in all competitions, the versatile 24-year-old notched 9 goals whilst registering 13 assists for his teammates to feed from, and the Whites are certainly lacking a productive figure along the right flank, but if anything’s correct about this particular announcement, it’s that Wolves will not bite or budge without a mouth watering offering being flung in their direction by Fulham.
Ludwig Augustinsson – SV Werder Bremen
A shining light for Sweden at the 2018 World Cup, Fulham – subject to a report published by Mirror – allegedly have SV Werder Bremen’s Ludwig firmly in their sights as they scour the continent and beyond for an assured left-back to patrol the flank behind Ryan Sessegnon next term.
Matt Targett spent the second-half of the 2017-18 campaign on loan at Craven Cottage and after an impressive temporary stint in SW6 many were keen to see the developing Southampton full-back return to the river on a permanent basis, but it’s thought that the powers that be at St. Mary’s wish to retain his services for the coming season.
Augustinsson, 24, featured in 29 Bundesliga ties for Die Werderaner last season, with 1 solitary goal and assist to his record. In Russia for his homeland, the defender has exhibited his duties in all 3 of Blågult’s Group F fixtures and even netted the opener of their final encounter against Mexico, a strike which contributed towards a remarkable 3-0 triumph to help Nordic nation claim top spot overall in the group, whilst Joachim Low’s Germany, remarkably, finished rock bottom.
Matt Targett – Southampton
Speaking of which, it’s believed that Fulham are indeed eager to add Southampton’s Matt Targett to their books on a permanent basis next season, although talkSPORT understand that the south coast outfit have swatted away a £10m bid from the Whites, as they’re adamant that the 22-year-old will be a valuable asset to Mark Hughes’ squad’s cause in the coming 2018-19 season.
A mainstay in Fulham’s promotion-clinching fold, Slav’ will presumably want to emulate the club’s heroics in the top-flight, and snagging Targett would only instil a sense of familiarity amongst the camp, having consummately graced the turf in a Whites jersey 21 times in the second-half of the previous campaign.
If Targett is to achieve undisputed first-team status at Southampton, he’d have to dislodge England international Ryan Bertrand from his perch along the left touchline, a steeply staunch task, so perhaps a switch to CC in the summer would be conducive to his growth and development as a budding ace of the English game.
Tim Krul – Brighton & Hove Albion
Sturdy keepers will be needed if Fulham are to stave off relegation next season, and it’s subsequently arisen that the Whites – as per a report published by The Sun – are edging closer to landing Brighton & Hove Albion’s Tim Krul, who will be available on a free transfer after conveying his desire to move elsewhere for un-rivalled supremacy between the sticks.
The Dutch stopper, 30, is currently Mat Ryan’s understudy at the Amex and it’s thought that the Cottagers would be more than able to accommodate his services on a weekly basis, and as the Seagulls are supposedly composing a £4m swoop for our very own David Button, bewilderingly, an exit for the former Newcastle United man would certainly be a necessary requirement for his stalling career.
But, as Marcus Bettinelli was effectively a solid, unflappable brick wall for Fulham during their quest for promotion after 4 years out of the big-time, ‘Joka’ could gift the valiant 26-year-old the chance to truly prove his metal on the greatest domestic stage in existence, however there’s nothing like a healthy dose of competition and Krul, given that he’d cost absolutely zilch, would be a very shrewd acquisition in that respect.
Fernando Forestieri – Sheffield Wednesday
Yes, just like last summer, a report published by Daily Mail suggests that Fulham are keeping a beady eye on Sheffield Wednesday’s Fernando Forestieri, who dispatched 10 goals for the Owls last term as they floundered towards the basement of the Championship for the vast majority of the season.
Wednesday are set for a relative overhaul in the summer in order to relinquish increasing debts that are engulfing the club, and with that in mind, the value of the asking price that they’ll slap on the striker’s head is yet to be disclosed, but it’s anticipated that it’ll be reasonable, plausible and without a doubt, deeply tempting.
Stoke City and Middlesbrough are both said to have enquired about the Argentinian hit-man, and as the 28-year-old can deputise anywhere across the front line, he would be an adaptable option for Slavisa.
Ahmed Musa – Leicester City
A report published by Turkish outlet Fotomac states that Fulham and Huddersfield Town are both tracking Leicester City’s searing attacker Ahmed Musa, who’s career at the Foxes has been staggered since joining the 2015-16 Premier League champions from Russian outfit CSKA Moscow in the summer of 2016.
Musa, 25, represented Nigeria at the 2018 World Cup and even netted an astounding brace against Iceland to condemn the spirited Nordics to a damning 2-0 loss, although despite his accomplished efforts, the Super Eagles despairingly crashed out of the tournament in Russia in the group stages.
There’s no disputing Musa’s underlying calibre and prowess in the final third with the goal at his mercy, but the hierarchy at the King Power Stadium could be swayed into cashing in on the expansive striker if a sufficient figure is tabled, and as the Whites’ strategic calibration demands pace and fluidity on the counter, Musa – who spent the second-half of the 2017-18 campaign at CSKA – would fit seamlessly into Slav’s top-flight project.