The Football League Paper - - CHRIS DUNLAVY -

THE best piece of busi­ness in the Jan­uary trans­fer win­dow? It has to be Ful­ham’s stub­born re­fusal to flog striker Ross McCor­mack.

Mid­dles­brough ini­tially waved £7m, then re­turned with a string of seem­ingly ir­re­sistible of­fers.

By the end of Jan­uary, a cheque for £12m was wait­ing to be signed. For a guy bar­relling to­wards 30, it seemed a no-brainer. Yet Ful­ham stood firm. Why? Be­cause they can­not de­fend to save their lives. They’re atro­cious. When you’re the se­cond-high­est scor­ers in the divi­sion and sit just seven points above the drop zone, the is­sue is pretty ev­i­dent.

The Cot­tagers are about as durable as wet tis­sue and man­ager Slav­isa Jokanovic needs more than one trans­fer win­dow to solve that.

Their only hope – for this sea­son at least – lies in outscor­ing the op­po­si­tion. And with­out their 16-goal top scorer, an out­side chance of rel­e­ga­tion to League One would be­come a very real pos­si­bil­ity. That’s worth a lot more than £12m.

KEY: Ross McCor­mack

BOSS: Slav­isa


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