Well, it’s all over…

A very frantic last hour for Lawrie and the gang but this evening has seen Diop and Liam leave for Pompey and Reading, respectively, while Danny Murphy has arrived from Spurs, Seol Ki-Hyeon from Reading and Shefki Kuqi has come over from Crystal Palace….Personally i feel a bit underwhelmed by tonight’s activities. I was hoping for a star striker to arrive and am not sure Kuqi fits the bill in that regard although i’ll be happy to be proved wrong…If you’ve got any comments or views then please feel free to post them….


Transfer deadline updates

Midnight – The transfer window is shut at last…phew!

23:54 – Now saying the Seol deal is for three years…details about the Murphy deal still unclear at this stage…

23:50 – Interview with Nicky Hammond, Reading’s director of football, who says he is “absolutley delighted” to sign Rosenior as he brings “versatility to the side”. Seol, he says, did a fantastic job for them at the beginning of last season but the move suits him and his family…

23:41 – Danny Murphy has signed from Spurs on a one year loan deal apparently…still waiting for confirmation it’s a loan rather than permanent signing…

23:29 – Sky going on about how much we have spent…but overlooking the fact that a huge number of players have actually been sold…

23:28 – Seol Ki-Hyeon/Liam deal is completed…apparently no money has changed hands and Seol is joining us on a two year deal…

23:24 – Still waiting on news…Sky reporting that Liam swap deal is imminent…

22:46 – We sign Crystal Palace striker Shefki Kuqi on loan until January…news on the Murphy signing and Liam/Seol swap still awaited…

22:13 – Reading say everything tied up for the Liam for Seol Ki-Hyeon swap deal…just waiting on paperwork at the Fulham end apparently…

21:24 – Diop has apparently signed on a three year deal for Pompey…still awaiting news on arrivals with Danny Murphy tipped to sign…

Three new players could be in before midnight!

Well, that was an interesting interview with Sanchez on the official site…He is apparently in the hunt for three more players before the deadline closes at midnight and seems virtually certain that at least one of them will sign.

My guess is that it will be a striker as he made it clear he needs a partner for Healy now that McBride is out until around Christmas. The question is who? My preferred option would be Bobby Zamora. A big, useful presence in the box and capable of turning on the class in front of goal – as was illustrated by last night’s goals of the 2005/06 season special on Sky.

We’ve already had one bit of good news today – the arrival of Dejan Stefanovic – who i’d imagine is almost guaranteed a place in the starting line-up against Spurs tomorrow. Please let him bring some stability to the back four – or at least wake everyone else up when there’s five minutes left on the clock.

A more controversial rumour is the proposed arrival of Sean Davies from Pompey in a swap with Diop. I have heard nothing to suggest this is anything other than speculation but i, for one, would welcome him back with open arms. I was very upset when he went off to Spurs as he seemed the obvious candidate at that time to assume the captaincy and press ahead to gain England caps. His career has stagnated over the last three (four?) seasons since his departure and we could be the ideal place to help kick-start it for him.

Any views?

Interview: Paul Smith of Spurs Odyssey

We asked Paul Smith, who runs the Spurs Odyssey website (http://www.spursodyssey.com/), for his views on Tottenham’s season so far and to give his predictions for how the match will play out tomorrow. Cheers Paul.

What do you make of the season so far for Spurs?
Pre-season we (and many pundits) had Spurs marked down as the best bet to break the current top four cartel. Personally, i think that our poor commitment in the first two games has blown that idea out of the water, and we already have a battle to match the last two years of reaching fifth place. We improved and beat Derby emphatically, and despite the loss at Old Trafford, our performance was one to restore some of our hopes for the season ahead.

What’s your view on the Martin Jol situation?
I would have been calling for his head, had we lost against Derby. That didn’t happen and he did make adjustments to the team and playing style that were not just dictated by the injuries. This led to an early rush of goals, and a thoroughly relaxing game for Spurs fans to watch, which is still a rare commodity, despite our second successive qualification for Europe through the League.

Martin Jol is a sincere, humble, honest and amiable guy, who in my view (and that of countless Spurs fans) has not deserved the degree of pressure that has been put upon him by the club’s board, and the resulting media coverage. The board are entitled to make contingency plans, but failed to keep their activities quiet, and then when faced with press exposure also failed to reduce the resulting furore with weak explanations.

In conclusion, in my view, Martin Jol should be given more time this season to match the ambition of the fans and the club’s board. Some fans will be happy if we manage to win a trophy or again make the UEFA Cup, but I must admit, I want Spurs in that top four!

Who should we be fearing the most on Saturday?
Berbatov hasn’t hit his greatest form yet, but hopefully any transfer speculation will be truly out of the way, and he can give us one of his stylish and enthralling performances. He showed a flash of such quality at Old Trafford, with a pull-down of a high ball, control, turn and curling shot that had Van Der Sar beaten, but went just over the stanchion.

Gareth Bale made his debut last Sunday and was Spurs’ man of the match, playing most of the game in front of Young-Pyo Lee on the left.

You saw in the FA Cup last season how players such as Robbie Keane can show great class, and if Spurs produce that sort of football again, you should be very scared!

What’s your impression of Fulham this season?
I haven’t seen too much of your team, but the results clearly indicate close calls, and of course you suffered through a referee’s decision (or should that be lack of decision) in your game against Middlesbrough. Shame you didn’t hold on against the gooners!
Lawrie Sanchez looks like being a breath of fresh air for you, and I fancy there might be a touch of the Northern Ireland v England spirit this Saturday.

What do you reckon the score on Saturday will be?
We always have to ask “Which Spurs side will turn up?” Equating this to Fulham and our poor record in recent away league games against you, will it be the side that scraped a 1-1 draw in the League, or the one that demolished you 4-0 in the FA Cup? I think it could be somewhere in between and I’ll take Spurs to win a hard-fought game 2-1. It could go either way though!

The transfer window deadline is approaching…fast

I hate the last few hours of the transfer windows as there is always the fear of a shock exit that you didn’t see coming. I remember how choked I felt when I heard on the car radio that Rufus Brevett was heading to West Ham…now there was a tough defender!

A player who won’t be wearing the white shirt, sadly, is Thomas Graveson, who has decided to return to Everton after mini-stints at Real Madrid and Celtic. This is a real shame as he would have added some much needed steel to the team.

On a more positive note we have already made one capture in the last 24 hours – a 20-year-old defender from Charlton Athletic called Nathan Ashton who has been in the U17 England squad – but he seems to be one for the future rather than an instant addition to the first team.

Lots of talk last night that Pompey’s Dejan Stefanovic is due to complete his move to the Cottage today which, if true, will be great news. Although hardly a young charger, he has bags of experience and, let’s face it, we desperately need some steady hands at the back.

Still nothing concrete on Rosenior or Diop, although Sunderland are now apparently leading the race for the latter’s signature. To be honest i’m not too worried about the big fella going as his performances have been mixed to say the least. The next Viera? Yeah, right. Liam, on the other hand, I have always rated and I am genuinely confused as to why he’s not part of our plans.

I will be back on later with a preview of tomorrow’s match against Spurs at the Cottage, including an interview with one of their blog owners who gives us his take on what’s been happening at the Lane this year and shares his opinion on the new-look Fulham side.

Curse of the captain’s armband

I’m beginning to seriously think that the Fulham Captain’s armband is cursed…Just about everyone who has worn it over the past 10 years has either been sold while in situ or suffered a serious injury. If you don’t believe me, look at the list below. If i’ve missed anyone out – or you think I’ve made any mistakes – please let me know…

1. Chris Coleman – suffers badly smashed leg in car crash back in January 2001
2. Andy Melville – sold to West Ham while captain
3. Lee Clarke – departed the club while captain, ending up at Newcastle
4. Boa Morte – suffered a broken cheek bone – later sold to West Ham
5. * Zat Knight – took over from Boa, then had his jaw broken a week later
6. Michael Brown – sold to Wigan while still club captain
7. Brian McBride – suffers serious knee injury

* never officially club captain, only vice captain

Basically our captain needs to be someone we either want to get rid of – or who we wouldn’t miss so badly if they got injured! Any suggestions?

Zat Knight – in The Sun

er, just in case you haven’t heard, Zat is in The Sun today…