If you watched the USA play in the World Cup, you may have noticed two stand out MLS players. DeAndre Yedlin was already identified in our off season plan. Unfortunately for Fulham, his age and his performance has carried his price and ambition past what Fulham could offer. The second player you probably noticed was Matt Besler. According to Greg Seltzer, at least 10 teams have expressed interest or made an offer. Sporting Kansas City has put a Monday deadline to get this deal done. Of course, things could come sooner as the CEO of the club put this message out there.
Sporting seem to be looking for a fee of about £3.5M. At 27, Besler is just entering his peak for a central defender. As amazing as it seems after last year, he would actually increase the average age of the back line by quite a bit. He's also a different kind of defender. He's not a big, powerful player. He uses his smarts and his athletic ability to position himself well. If I had to compare him to a current player he'd be most like Jack Grimmer. One other thing that he brings is a long throw on set pieces. I've honestly never seen a player throw the ball so far on a line. This highlight shows exactly how dangerous it can be. I'm not certain Fulham can get this done. There are probably bigger teams in on Besler. Sunderland in particular are rumored to have shown interest (though not yet bid). However, Fulham can pay wages that compete with any of them. And maybe most importantly, they will give him the best opportunity to play.
I've long suspected Ashkan Dejagah would be leaving. You would think that there would be many teams from Germany and the Premier League that would be in on him. The fact that there hadn't been much noise led me to believe that Fulham weren't that interested in selling. Of course then you here something like this.
Al-Arabi are reported to have made a £5million bid for Fulham winger Ashkan Dejagah. #ffc— SkyBet Championship (@Transfer_News24) July 16, 2014
I'm sure Al-Arabi will back up the money truck to Dejagah. The question is, does he want to go play in Qatar? I have to admit that I don't watch any of that football, but I can't imagine the quality is above that of the Championship. If he wants to go, I don't think Fulham can turn down that fee though.
Finally, Besiktas keeps being linked with Fulham. We'd heard rumors that Mitroglou might be going there. I think any chance of that just ended with Demba Ba joining the club. However, they are now linked to another Fulham attacker.
Besiktas are showing an interest in Fulham attacker Bryan Ruiz #FFC (Source: The Times)— Transfer News (@Transfer__Footy) July 16, 2014
I don't think there's much of a chance of Fulham hanging on to Ruiz, and Besiktas would be as good a place as any to sell him.
Finally, Fulham are being linked with Carlton Cole. In the off season plan, I talked about bringing in an older striker with Championship experience. However, after the signing of Ross McCormack, that's much less of an issue. Add to that the fact that Fulham are running super deep at the position. Even if Mitroglou leaves, the team is at least four to five players deep at the position. As Kristian Balkin writes, Fulham have too many strikers at the minute. I'd really like to see Cauley Woodrow and Moussa Dembele get playing time, not to mention Adam Taggart. The only way I'd approve of this is if Hugo Rodallega and Mitroglou are both shown the door. Since I expect Hugo to stay, I'd say Cole doesn't need to come.
Those are all the current rumors I've seen. Any opinions on these? Seen any other juicy ones? Sound off in the comments.