Fulham to loan Emanuelson from Milan

Claudio Villa

Versatile Dutchman set to join for remainder of the season, without an option to buy

Reports are circulating that Fulham are extremely close to tying up a deal to bring in Milan midfielder Urby Emanuelson on loan for the remainder of the season.

Tancredi Palmeri, an Italian journalist, broke the news on Twitter and several reports soon followed, suggesting that the player is already on his way to London to undergo Fulham's notoriously stringent medical.

It has become clear that were a move to go ahead, however, no option-to-buy will be included in the deal.

The left winger, who can also play at left back and in any role behind the striker, has recently made it clear that he is not content with his role at AC Milan, where he moved in 2011 after a particularly successful time at Ajax.

A product of the Amsterdam side's youth team, Martin Jol became fond of the player's talents while manager at the club.

It is unclear as to what issue Jol is trying to address in his move for Emanuelson - whether he will deploy the Dutch international at left back, his natural position, left midfield, where Jol used him in his time at Ajax, or in attacking midfield, where he has played at Milan.

Replacing John Arne Riise at full back perhaps seems the most viable option, with the Norwegian still struggling for form and the left midfield position already jam-packed with talent. Damien Duff, Alex Kacaniklic, Ashkan Dejagah and Kerim Frei can all play there though, understandably, Jol could well be looking to simply add more experience to the wings.

Regardless, the 26 year old would be seen as a huge coup for Fulham as he is a player graced with a huge wealth of ability.

He possesses bundles of pace and enviable skills on the ball - hence Jol's decision at Ajax to use him further up the pitch.

Despite his current status on the fringes of the Milan team, he was hot property barely two years ago as clubs lined up to sign him. Milan, however, fought off the likes of Liverpool to capture the player's signature.

In his first full season, 2011/12, he was a mainstay in the first team, making thirty league appearances and chipping in with two goals.

Of late, though, he's been out of favour and it hasn't gone down well in the Urby camp.

"Urby is not happy at the moment," the player's agent, Brian Berkleef, told reporters this month.

"Every player is going to be unhappy when they do not play regularly, and so is Urby. His lack of playing time in recent weeks kind of surprises me. I don't know the reason behind it."

Another surprise out of the hat from Jol, perhaps?

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