News today that Roy Hodgson has indeed confirmed that Fulham are closing in on a deal to sign Damien Duff from Newcastle United.
Damien Duff – will leave Newcastle
Fulham are said to have offered Newcastle United £4M for the Ireland winger, who became a regular at Blackburn Rovers when Hodgson took over at Ewood Park in 1997.
Roy Hodgson thinks a lot of Duff and it also seems that the Irishman is now keen to move back to London, so we have to think this deal is nearly 90% sure to go through now.
We don’t expect Duff to play tomorrow against Reading and that may see young Kazenga LuLua play at St. James’ Park.
Hodgson, who is one of the gentlemen of football, said today:
“The clubs are talking and I hope the deal will go through. He’s a player that interests us,” . “Damien and I go back a long way from when we worked together at Blackburn. He wants to come back to west London.”
“Damien had injury problems at Chelsea and has done well at Newcastle given the turmoil there. Every time he’s played for Ireland he’s consistently been one of their best performers.”
“We know what we’d be getting with Damien – he’s an experienced and quality player.”
Duff’s leaving will knock around £65K/week off the Newcastle wage bill, but we still think we have around £190K/week still to go to get the overall wage bill below £40M for the year.
We estimate if Damien moves to Fulham, Newcastle will have knocked around £25M off the yearly wage bill of £74M. They will also have taken in around £23M in transfer fees for Martins, Beye, Bassong and Duff.
Duff could be signed today at the earliest, but we think he’s almost certainly out of the door at Newcastle now.