Thank You

Monday 1 July 2013 09:00

The Club would like to thank all the Fulham players whose contracts expired on 30th June for their service to the Craven Cottage cause over the years.

Australian goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer was signed on a free transfer in 2008 after more than a decade at Middlesbrough and became a virtual ever-present in the side as our established number one. The stopper made his 500th top-flight appearance against Arsenal last season and, in doing so, became the first overseas player to reach that milestone.

Schwarzer made his Fulham debut against Hull City and played every minute of the 2008/09 campaign to pick up the Club’s Player of the Year award at the end of his first season. Playing a huge role in our run to the UEFA Europa League Final in 2010, he became a Cottage favourite and made three penalty saves last season - most notably in the 3-3 draw at the Emirates against Arsenal.

Previously our longest-serving current player, Simon Davies wrote himself into Fulham folklore by scoring vital goals against Hamburg and Atletico Madrid during our Europa League Final run. Having signed from Everton in 2007, he made his debut against Sheffield United and put in an impressive first full season thanks to his his pace and dynamism.

Davies’ international career with Wales ended in 2010, but his dramatic equaliser against Hamburg to help us get back to win the game 2-1 will forever be remembered by Fulham fans; as will his goal in the Final that almost saw us clinch glory.

Northern Ireland defender Chris Baird has been a valuable player for Fulham thanks to his incredible versatility and he started the Europa League Final at right-back.

Signed from Southampton in 2007, ‘Bairdinho’ scored his first goals for the Club on 28th December 2010 against Stoke City (a long-range brace in a 2-0 win) that helped to kickstart our campaign. Earlier this season he showcased his versatility by slotting into a defensive midfield role and proved that his goalscoring touch hadn’t deserted him when he notched in consecutive October weeks against Aston Villa and Reading.

Striker Mladen Petrić could not have made a better start to life at Fulham when he netted five goals in four appearances on our pre-season tour – including a stunning bicycle-kick against Nice. Known by Martin Jol from their time together at Hamburg, he then bagged a brace on his Premier League debut against Norwich City in the first game of the 2012/13 season. The Croatian showed great predatory instincts by scoring five goals in nine starts, while he made a further 14 appearances from the bench.

Goalkeeper Csaba Somogyi became the first signing of the Jol era when he arrived at the Club during the summer of 2011. The Hungarian was called up to the bench for the Premier League game against West Bromwich Albion on 1st January, but did not make a First Team appearance during his time in SW6 and spent time on loan at Dartford towards the end of last term.

From the Development Squad, the Club would also like to thank Alex Smith, James Musa, Richard Peniket, Tom Donegan and Corey Gameiro. Smith and Donegan both made appearances for the First Team: Alex came on as a substitute in the 3-0 win over West Brom in September, while Tom made his senior bow against Crusaders in a Europa League qualifying game in 2011.

Fulham Football Club owes all of our successes to its players, so we would like to wish all the guys the very best for their future careers.

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