Johnson set for Toffees reunion

Posted Sunday, September 13, 2009 by PA

Fulham striker Andrew Johnson returns for Sunday's Barclays Premier League clash with former club Everton after recovering from his collarbone injury.

Midfielders Danny Murphy (calf) and Simon Davies (foot) and striker Bobby Zamora (Achilles) are also expected back for the clash at Craven Cottage.

Goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer is a doubt because of a stiff neck so Pascal Zuberb|hler is on standby to deputise.

Ahead of the game, Fulham boss Roy Hodgson expects negotiations over a new contract for Brede Hangeland to speed up now the transfer window has closed.

Hangeland had been linked with a big-money move to Arsenal while Everton and Liverpool were also reported to be interested in the towering Norway centre-back. Hodgson has stated no bids were received during the summer, paving the way for a new deal.

"I believe Hangeland's agent, who has been waiting until the end of the transfer window, is quite keen to sit down with the chief executive to discuss his contract," Hodgson said.

Hangeland will marshal Fulham's defence in Sunday's Barclays Premier League clash with Everton, the first of six games for the club in 22 days. Fulham's involvement in the Europa League has cranked up their workload this season and Hodgson admits they must learn to adapt.

"I'm hoping we can balance the Europa League and the Premiership in a way that it won't affect us every time we play a Europa League game," he added.

"We will also have to rotate. We didn't see that much last year as we didn't have many midweek fixtures. Now we have many games coming up in quick succession. I would think it very unlikely the same 11 will play all those games."

Everton will inclillion worth of new talent in Johnny Heitinga and Diniyar Bilyaletdinov in their squad for the trip.

Dutchman Heitinga cost #6.2million from Atletico Madrid while Bilyaletdinov was a #10million signing from Locomotiv Moscow, the Russian international making a five-minute appearance a fortnight ago in the side that beat Wigan 2-1 at Goodison Park.

And they will join two other summer arrivals, #5million Sylvain Distin and on loan Brazilian striker Jo, for the trip to west London.

Everton manager David Moyes has called for an overhaul of the rules regarding the transfer of young players.

The Toffees face Fulham in the Barclays Premier League with something of a new-look side with #22million of new signings available for selection. But it was another transfer, that of 16-year-old Luke Garbutt from Leeds, which caused controversy this week, with the League One club unhappy about the amount of compensation they were awarded by a tribunal.

While Everton acted entirely within the rules, Chelsea were banned from registering any new players for the next two transfer windows after FIFA found them guilty of inducing a French teenager to breach his contract with Lens two years ago. That led to a slew of allegations against Premier League clubs regarding signings of young players. And Moyes believes the whole area needs new regulation.

"Should clubs be able to take players away from their clubs at such a low age? It has to be looked into," he said.

"There should be set prices for younger players. When I managed Preston I got annoyed when we lost players and just got a bit of compensation. Now I am at a big club, we go to clubs to try to sign their players, so I have a foot in both camps.

"But if we are going to have smaller clubs that prosper, we have to have rules that let them keep their players for longer."




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