Fulham’s Fredericks warns key players may leave if club miss out on promotion


Fulham defender Ryan Fredericks admits his side will only be able to keep their top players if they will able to secure promotion to the Premier League.

Premier League clubs have been keeping tabs on 16-year-old winger Ryan Sessegnon and midfielder Tom Cairney, whose goal secured a 1-1 draw in the play-off semi-final first leg against Reading.

Fulham head to the Madejski Stadium for the second leg on Tuesday night as they bid to reach Wembley and a final eliminator against either Sheffield Wednesday or Huddersfield.

And full-back Fredericks said: “It is very important that we go up, because then we have a better chance of keeping our best players.

“There is always going to be interest from other clubs when you have players doing so well. This is the best chance we have had for a few years to go up – hopefully we can do it.

“Tom is technically very good, the best passer of a football in the league by a long way. Those sort of qualities would see him shine in the Premier League.

“Any Premier League team would be lucky to have him, but we have got him at the moment and let him do the job for us.

“Everyone is focused on doing this with, and for, Fulham. Everyone wants to play for Fulham in the Premier League.

“So there will be no talk of anything else or going anywhere else, the minds are set on promotion.

“After the season is done, that is when talks happen. Until that point, we are all trying to get Fulham up.”

Jordan Obita’s goal put Reading ahead at Craven Cottage but Cairney’s header left the tie finely poised.

“It could work in our favour, going there with the draw – things might open up a bit more,” added Fredericks. “We certainly haven’t written ourselves off.

“We have the second best away form in the league and they are going to have to come out. We can counter-attack, and the tie is still wide open.”