Fulham have announced two big signings. The London club have landed Fernando Amorebieta and Derek Boateng for free.
It was back in January when Amorebieta was linked with clubs like Arsenal, Everton and Zenit St Petersburg. The 28-year-old’s future at Athletic Bilbao was up for speculations since the start of this season, after both the parties failed to reach an agreement over a contract extension. The center-back, who has made over 250 appearances for the club, also missed a large part of season due to injury. He made only 17 appearances for the club this season.
But Amorebieta is a really good coup for Fulham, especially considering that he will come for free. The London club announced that the Venezuelan international has signed a four-year contract at Craven Cottage. Amorebieta spoke to Fulham’s official website about his delight at joining the club.
“I’m delighted to have signed a four-year deal with Fulham and I’m looking forward to competing in the Barclays Premier League next season. I’m impressed with the talent already at the Club and I look forward to meeting the players for pre-season training in July.” – The Fulham defender was quoted.
Interestingly Amorebieta has played for the Spanish U-19 team and also won the UEFA U-19 championship with Spain back in 2004. But in 2006 he decided to pursue his international career with Venezuela as he realised that it would be hard to break into the Spanish senior side.
The former Bilbao defender is good in the air but not nearly as effective as Hangeland, although he has more pace than the Norwegian international. But his biggest weakness is perhaps his disciplinary record. The Venezuelan is the most red-carded player in Bilbao’s history, with 11 dismissals to his name. In fact in 2009-10 season, the defender picked up 18 yellow cards and two reds!
The club has also announced the signing of Ghanaian international Derek Boateng on a one-year deal. The 30-year-old central midfielder, who has played for clubs like Panathinaikos, Koln and Getafe, became the club’s third signing to be announced this week (after permanently signing Sascha Riether and now Amorebieta). Boateng was delighted to sign for the club and was eager to train with his new teammates.
“I’m very happy that I have signed and I want to thank the Chairman, the Manager and the Board at Fulham Football Club. I’ve been working hard to come here and I’ll do my best for the Club.
“It’s been a long road for me but now I’m here I’m so happy and I can’t wait to start and give everything I have.” – Boateng told Fulham’s official website.
The Cottagers have made a good start to their transfer campaign and with a limited budget, they will have to mostly rely on free transfers and bargain deals. But Boateng and especially Amorebieta could turn out to be a shrewd piece of business.