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Salcido in, Konchesky out and a winnable away match at hand

27 August 2010

Now Liverpool fans will get to find out that Konchesky is shorter than Tom Cruise.

Reports late Friday have Liverpool upping their offer to 4 million pounds for Paul Konchesky, which should be enough to prise the left back given Fulham’s earlier signing of Mexican international defender Carlos Salcido from PSV Eindhoven, for an estimated 1.6 million pounds.

Interestingly, Liverpool may also loan out two teenage attacking prospects to Fulham in the deal, which would help the Cottagers’ depth up front.

Konchesky has been a solid servant for Fulham and a quality piece of a back four that has spearheaded the club’s surge over the past two seasons. That said, he was in the last season of his contract and Fulham paid less than half the transfer fee to land a perfectly capable replacement in Salcido. Squeezing out a couple pounds here and there could help Mark Hughes find the one final piece he needs in this window. I mean, not every club can just buy eight new star players every five months, right?

It will be interesting to see if Konchesky is available tomorrow for the match at Blackpool, the home Premiership opener for the Tangerines, or whether Matthew Briggs will be trusted in a league match. This should be a highly entertaining affair.

Forget the scoreline last week at Arsenal. Blackpool were playing very well in the first 30 minutes and showed no fear. They were undone by one incisive attack that led to a penalty kick (even though the foul was outside the box) and a straight red card for a DOGSO challenge (probably the correct call). Once the PK made it 2-0 and they were a man down, it was lights out. Nonetheless, Blackpool hasn’t changed its tack from last year’s midseason switch to a hell-bent-on-attacking 4-3-3, and they should be a worthy foe at home. Even teams like Hull weren’t dreadful at home in Prem play last season, so expecting a walkover for a team of Fulham’s standing is not reasonable.

Can Fulham pick up their first away win in league play since last season’s opener at Pompey, more than 12 months ago? I think they can, but it won’t be easy. Given the Cottagers’ newfound attacking oomph away from home, there could be a number of goals in this one. Call it Fulham 3, Blackpool 2.

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