Fulham head coach Marco Silva is expecting a resolution to Fabio Carvalho’s contract situation at Craven Cottage this month – but fears that he may have his head turned by one of the world’s big teams.
The 19-year-old Lisbon-born attacking midfielder burst onto the scene at the back end of the 2020-21 campaign by scoring against Southampton in the Premier League for the Cottagers.
Carvalho was then given an opportunity to impress more frequently in pre-season under Silva and started the current Championship season on fire, scoring three goals in his first five outings before spending two months on the sidelines with an injury.
Quiz: Can you name which club Fulham signed these 28 midfielders from?
In that time a contract dispute arose with the teenager turning down multiple offers from the club to extend his deal beyond the summer of 2022, and it led to the likes of Liverpool, Chelsea and Spanish giants Real Madrid and Barcelona being linked with his signature.
With a change of agents believed to have occurred this month, Fulham are still waiting to hear back from the youngster on whether or not he plans to commit to the Cottagers, but Silva expects to hear back imminently although he is fearful that other clubs are already planning on making a move for the talented midfielder.
“I know his agent will have been talking to some other big clubs,” Silva said, per West London Sport.
“But we are expecting something from Fabio and his agent – they know what they said to us.
“For me as a manager, our board are trying to take control of the situation, but I am waiting for Fabio to come and speak with me because his agent will speak to the club.
“Fabio knows what he said to me, and I expect to have an answer from him.”
It appeared a few months ago that Carvalho’s head had turned massively at all the interest in his signature, so it would be a surprise if he now remained at the club.
Since returning from injury and rejecting new deals, the England youth international has only started in five of his eight appearances and has been less productive than before he spent time on the sidelines.
It’s important to not expect too much of someone so young but he’s clearly got a lot of natural ability and that’s why there’s so much interest.
If Fulham can tie Carvalho down long-term then it will be a major coup but at this point you’d expect it to go the other way and for him to depart.