Fulham Sign Tim Hoogland, Other Rumors Abound

Lars Baron

One more day, and one more signing. A 31 year old German right back departs yesterday and a 29 year old German right back arrives today.

Fulham have have announced the signing of German right back Tim Hoogland, previously from Shalke 04. On the surface, this looks like a good move. Felix Magath certainly knows the player, and he should provide many of the same attributes as Riether. However, you don't just get players from the Bundesliga to join a Championship side unless they have warts. Especially players that were talented enough to start in the Champions League knockout stages last year. What warts does Hoogland have? Due to injuries, he's only played 26 matches since the 2010/11 season. If the club can keep him fit, he's probably a good player. The question is, can they though?

In more defensive news, It seems that Fernando Amorebieta wants to stay. I believe Amorebieta is an under rated defender who unfairly gets a bad wrap from the fans. The advanced metrics say he was the best defender on the squad last year on a per minute basis. The one surprise from the article is that he does have a release clause in his contract. However, my guess is that no team will guarantee him the money he's currently earning. That money, plus the pull of London might be enough to keep him.

Finally, Get West London has a surprising article. Their sources state that Fulham is planning on keeping both Konstantinos Mitroglou and Bryan Ruiz. The Mitroglou decision makes some sense on the surface. If you can't move him without taking a loss, and you can't loan him without eating a bunch of his wages, you might as well see what you can get out of him.

The Ruiz situation is dicier. He's only got one year left on his contract and I don't see him signing an extension. After this World Cup, I don't think his value will get that much higher. You might as well cash in now. The whole article could be a smoke screen to up his price. There is one scenario that makes sense however. Perhaps they already have a deal lined up to move him. This deal might allow him to play most of the year with Fulham. Where would such a deal be? MLS. The Northern New Jersey area is home to many people of Costa Rican Ancestry. It's also home to the NY Red Bulls. After this season, they could lose both Thierry Henry and Tim Cahill. Bryan Ruiz could be a very attractive player to them. A move like that would allow Fulham to keep him until at least the end of January. It makes sense, but it is pure speculation on my part.

News seems to be coming out of the club on a more regular basis. I hope there's more to come and more to talk about over the next few days.

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