Fulham FanZoner Henry Walmsley pays tribute to three departing legends and outlines his high hopes for Patjim Kasami going into the new season.
With clubs jetting off on pre season tours, and brand new, overpriced replica shirts hitting the stores, it's official, the new season is just around the corner! But I'm going to start this blog by taking a quick look back.
Fulham released a list last week of players that would not be offered new contracts, and it signalled the end of an era, one of the greatest in the clubs history.
Mark Schwarzer, Chris Baird and Simon Davies were among those departing the Cottage this summer, and each deserves an individual blog thanking them for their time here. All three are quite simply club legends.
Come August 17, when the team walks out at the Stadium of Light, only one member of the team that played Atletico Madrid in the Europa League final three years ago will be wearing white, captain Brede Hangeland. Alas, we must finally wave good bye to the Roy Hodgson era, but we'll always have the memories.
The aforementioned trio were joined on the released list by players such as Mladan Petric and Giorgos Karagounis, although I'm not sure what the situation is with our Greek warrior, as Sascha Riether's tweet saying 'Georgios Karagounis is back!!! Welcome back my friend. Great decision from the club' would suggest he is staying.
The defender has had his account hacked before, though, so I'm sceptical as to whether this is true. Perhaps you readers could enlighten me; I've been in an internet-less hotel in Bulgaria for a week so am somewhat out of the loop.
Moving on, I'm looking forward to seeing the return of Patjim Kasami. I thought he got off to a fairly good start last season, and like many was disappointed to not see him given more of a chance before being shipped off on loan. He's a player who excites me, and to be honest, not many do in our squad. Given the right opportunities, I think he could have a really good year.
A rumour that surfaced on Twitter on Monday was us bringing in Adel Taarabt from QPR, a cult hero of our west London rivals. I saw a lot of support for it, but let me give you my reasons for why I don't think it would work.
You couldn't play Bryan Ruiz and Taarabt in the same team because they are both number 10, and neither particularly like playing out of position. I'd rather have Ruiz in the team personally, and I can guarantee Taarabt would not enjoy sitting on a bench for most of the year.
Other rumours? I saw Kevin Prince Boateng linked with us; I would take my hat off to Martin Jol if he brought him in but I won't be holding my breath.
We'll have to wait and see, but Jol said that he hopes to bring in a couple before the team head off to Costa Rica, so hopefully we won't have to wait long!