A terrible period for Fulham since Christmas has finally ended – they then went six league games with only a single point gained against Spurs on Boxing Day . The cup wins were of course good news in January, but they were also games against teams from lower divisions. But now a win in the Premiership, even against the struggling Pompey, is a welcome boost.
Etuhu returns from the African Nations Cup with a tooth problem that saw him withdraw from the first team after the group games, Konchesky and Gera were injured and AJ remains unavailable. However, Zamora is back earlier than was initially expected following his dislocated collarbone. But still, about half of the first team are currently out, so it was good to see some new players coming in during the transfer window.
Okaka has been discussed for some time now, coming over from Roma to train with the squad in January. He was probably in mind ever since he scored against Fulham in the Europa Cup. With Kamara going to Celtic on loan (with a view to a sale over summer), Okaka is now likely to be a starting forward until some of the regulars return. He had a bright start against Portsmouth, so maybe he could establish himself beyond that. I hope so, and I hope that if he does settle he’ll be available to buy when his loan expires at the end of the season.
Nicky Shorey also played well in the first game of his loan. He’s replaced Konchesky to fill the gap at left-back, which may mean that he’s destined to return back to Aston Villa in May.
What looked to be more of a long term investment was the signing of Christopher Buchtmann from Liverpool. He’s only 17, but has already been in an FA Youth Cup final and was in the team that won the last U17 European Cup for Germany. It’s certainly sent a lot of Liverpool fans into another bout of criticising their management.