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What does the future hold for Tosin?

Written by Alex Mackenzie on 7th March 2024

© Dara Curran

The last few weeks have been heaven for Fulham; a last-minute winner at Old Trafford and a convincing win over Brighton in front of the fans. It’s safe to say that Marco Silva is weathering a season that at times has proven difficult.

One of the defining aspects so far this term has been the fact that the team has taken on many forms. It’s only as the season is drawing to its conclusion that Fulham are a bit clearer on a few things. Firstly, Rodrigo Muniz has been emerging from his development cocoon, Tom Cairney has enjoyed an Indian summer in the starting XI, and the pairing of Tosin and Calvin Bassey has proven to be the best combination in the centre of defence.

Rock solid

The pairing have only started seven league games as a pairing. Out of those, Fulham have won five (all bar Bournemouth and Burnley). Of those five, three have been clean sheet performances. The remaining two wins were the victories against Arsenal and Manchester United. So, at this point, neutrals will be asking the question: why have they not started more games together? Their joint record is very good.

Well, we know Tosin has been injured and Bassey has been away at AFCON. In a way, the fact that they have been unavailable has shown that this Fulham team, with these two at the back, can offer a lot more.


Hopefully Tosin should know that a defensive partnership like the one we’re currently seeing can lead to great things. There will be the obvious temptation of moving away to play football at a higher level. But he has planted such great roots at Fulham, if he stays on for two – or even three – years, he can surely bank some more achievements and then secure a move when his quality has become undeniable. A move away now would seem foolish given the fact that he’s not exactly convinced big clubs to invest, he would have to fight for game time and would perhaps be asked to settle for not being an established first choice.

The club can use that fact to their advantage. At this point, with Tosin out of contract in the summer, they are making a loss on a player who has top-quality attributes. He’s still only 26 and parts of his game will continue to improve. He is also still a English player, who could step into a very shaky looking England back line. The sky is the limit, but at the moment the only move he could make is sideways.

What he if stays?

A contract for Tosin then, what would that look like? He’ll no doubt want a higher wage, so the club may have to swallow that if they don’t want to lose a first-team player for free. Potentially the club will have to propose that he will get a starting XI guarantee. A release clause that can allow him to make that big move if he does in fact get one. A clean sheet bonus to focus the mind during the term? Maybe even a level of clearances bonus?

Either way, Fulham will be thankful that a player who has this quality has not fully shown exactly what he is worth this term. There are still two months left of the season, and he’ll need to churn out high quality to get his salary up. The big clubs are unlikely to take a big chance on him just yet, as he still has lapses and momentary losses of concentration. He’s lost more than half his duels and has one direct error leading to goal in a Fulham shirt.

But out of the 13 appearances Tosin’s made this season, six have been wins and three have been draws, with four losses. And he has a better tackle success rate than Ruben Dias and Gabrielle Magalhaes to boot. The point to be made is that there is some seriously underlying value here that Fulham will hopefully be examining when proposing an offer. They might count themselves lucky that he hasn’t played all that much – the offer would probably have to be higher, and the decision may have already been taken out of their hands.

What if he goes?

If he doesn’t decide to stay, there will be an inquest into how to replace him. Tim Ream has signed an extension so he can step in temporarily and Issa Diop has looked capable of holding his own. But a long-term solution would be needed. Tosin would bring in no fee for his replacement and perhaps Fulham would look to bring in a youth prospect who could eventually make the role his own, saving expenditure. Otherwise, they’ll have to turn to the market, and so far, we know that Marco Silva has preferred Premier League experience with his signings. Joachim Anderson would be welcome back at Fulham, and with Oliver Glasner coming into a tricky situation at Palace, he might be tempted to come back to the Cottage. Trevor Chalobah is very much out of favour at Chelsea. It is these kind of fringe players that Fulham will likely target.

With the added issues of transfer fees and player integration, I’m sure the club will want Tosin to engage in meaningful talks around his future. Fulham will promise him what he wants if he is clear about his intentions. Marco will want to keep him in the set up. If Tosin is desperate for a move away though, the last thing you want on your books is a player who isn’t keen on the long term vision. So, selling him more great moments like his final penalty against Everton, and reminding him that the club will listen to offers from big clubs if he is under contract, will surely be the key to keeping him.

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