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Malanda could join Fulham over Spurs, Newcastle and Everton

Midfielder Tweets the possibility that he could team up with Martin Jol in the January transfer window

Clive Mason

Junior Malanda has reportedly admitted that joining Fulham is a distinct possibility through his Twitter account.

@JuniorMalanda, an account which has not been verified but is believed to be authentic, responded to a Fulham fan asking if he will join the Craven Cottage club by saying, "I will come maybe...".

Many European clubs are known to be chasing Malanda, whose real first name is Bernard, and Fulham are known to be amongst the leading names chasing his signature. Ajax, Tottenham Hotspur, Newcastle United and Everton have also been credited with an interest.

Malanda himself is known to be keen on first team football, however, and, therefore, Fulham are thought to be his preferred destination.

The Daily Mail have consistently linked Fulham with various bids for the 18 year-old and the latest, coming ten days ago, apparently met Zulte-Waregem's asking price of £5 million - £3.4 million up front and the rest in instalments.

A midfielder by trade, Malanda has the strength and ability to play in centre defence - a versatile feature that Jol rates particularly highly.

His club are happy to sanction a deal, fully aware that with so much interest in the player, it will be difficult to retain him, but would much prefer a move which would see him return to Zulte on loan for the rest of the season.

Jol was originally cautious about this but, with the loan-signing of Emmanuel Frimpong confirmed, may be willing to bow down to Belgian demands.

The two midfielders play a similar role, holding together the midfield and protecting the back line but Malanda, despite his tender age, has a wealth of technical ability and has been dubbed in some quarters as the 'new Moussa Dembele'.

In that sense, he could be the perfect signing for Fulham who have severely lacked the cutting edge that Dembele previously brought to their game.

Whether Malanda could come close to replicating that, however, is doubtful. He's performed to an exceptional standard for his club, who are exceeding expectations in the Belgian Jupiler League, sitting in second place yet, understandably, the Premier League is a huge step above.

As such, it's a deal that should clearly be encouraged but, perhaps, letting him return to Belgium isn't such a bad idea.