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Fulham offer defender new contract

last updated Monday 22nd May 2006, 12:38 PM
Liam Fontaine

Bristol City target Liam Fontaine has been offered a new contract by Fulham.

But the Robins have not given up in their attempts to sign the promising defender. Fontaine spent the second half of last season on loan at Ashton Gate and was very impressive.

The news that Fulham are keen to re-sign the Londoner, who is out of contract, is initially surprising.

The 20-year-old has only played one game for their first-team and seems unlikely to figure in boss Chris Coleman's long-term plans.

However, Fulham's move allows them to demand compensation for the player from any interested club as he is under 24 years of age and would not qualify for a Bosman free transfer.

City manager Gary Johnson said: "At the moment the deal is not totally dead. We are still hopeful of having Liam here."

Fontaine is believed to want to sign for Johnson, having enjoyed his football under him at both Yeovil Town and City.

But the Robins may be reluctant to pay a fee for a player Fulham did not want before his success with the League One club.

A decision will have to be made over whether City risk going to a transfer tribunal unless the matter can be resolved.

City lost another highly-rated defender, Liam Rosenior, to Fulham three years ago for a fee of just £55,000 plus add-ons after a tribunal went against them.

The son of ex-Ashton Gate striker Leroy has gone on to establish himself as a Premiership regular.

Source Bristol Evening Post
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