Scott Parker has set about trying to improve his defence this January, as he looks to maintain a playoff push for the Cottagers after an inconsistent run of form in the past month.
The Fulham manager has set his sights upon Burnley centre-back Ben Gibson, however Sky Sports’ Keith Downie has reported that the Cottagers have had a loan bid rejected for the defender.
The 27-year-old has featured just twice for Sean Dyche’s side this season, and has plenty of previous Championship experience after coming up through the ranks at Middlesbrough.
Here, we take a look at two Fulham players that could benefit following Burnley’s transfer decision…
Maxime Le Marchand
The experienced defender hasn’t featured as often as he would have liked this season, and following the additions of Michael Hector and Terence Kongolo in the January window already, the 30-year-old would have been fearing for his spot in the squad.
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Le Marchand has only featured eight times in the league this season, and with the other options now ahead of him, he would have found it increasingly difficult if Gibson had arrived at Craven Cottage this January.
The defender hasn’t featured for the Cottagers since the start of November, and he will already be frustrated with the fact that he is seeing no game-time as it is at Craven Cottage without the arrival of Gibson.
Burnley rejecting the loan bid for Gibson however means that he gets another chance to try and fight for his spot within the squad at Fulham, but he will find it difficult as it is with the competition in front of him.
The centre-back has been a regular in the Cottagers defence during the first half of the season, but he has struggled with consistency and has been tested many times by the opposition attackers.
Mawson would have been welcoming the additions of Hector and Kongolo as the added competition, but he would have felt that Parker adding Gibson to the ranks could have been a step too far,
However, Burnley rejecting the Fulham loan bid for Gibson could benefit Mawson, as it will relieve the pressure on his shoulders and he can concentrate on getting back to his best instead of worrying about his spot in Parker’s plans.
The former Swansea City centre-back has the quality to be one of the best in the Championship, and with his eyes being opened as to how unhappy Parker could be about his recent performances, he may see it as a wake-up call and return to his best in the next few weeks.