Yes, it’s that time of the year again and the January transfer window is in full swing. Fulham manager Rene Meulensteen is busy making some additions to his squad in an attempt to keep the club in the Premier League.
The mid-season window is notorious for its last minute, inflated purchases, but the Blues have had some success since FIFA made transfer windows compulsory during the 2002-03 season.
Here at getwestlondon, we have been asking readers via Twitter for their suggestions of Fulham’s top five best and worst winter buys. Last night we featured your favourite January recruits, so now here’s the bottom five according to our followers.
1. Jari Litmanen, unattached 2007-08
Roy Hodgson returned to Finland to sign former Ajax and Liverpool midfielder Jari Litmanen on a short-term deal to help Fulham's survival bid. The Craven Cottage chief knew veteran Litmanen well from his time working with the national side and felt his experience could be crucial in keeping the club up.
However, the 37-year-old was a nightmare and failed to play a single game in SW6. Hodgson accused Litmanen of a lack of commitment after he turned out for his country, despite being too unfit to feature for Fulham. He was one of eight players to leave the club that summer.
2. Eddie Johnson from Kansas City Wizards 2007-08
After the success of Clint Dempsey and Brian McBride, Fulham returned to the US for highly-rated hitman Eddie Johnson in a £3million deal from Kansas City in 2008. However, he struggled badly and failed to find the net in six games that season, while he also drew a blank for his country against England at Wembley in May.
Johnson was shipped out on a season-long loan to Championship outfit Cardiff City, where he scored just twice in 33 appearances. He returned to Craven Cottage the following year, but he failed to make an impact. He was sent out on loan again, this time to Preston, before leaving England in 2011.
Johnson didn’t manage a single goal in any of his 22 games for Fulham.
3. Giles Barnes from Derby County 2008-09
Fulham signed highly-rated Derby youngster Giles Barnes on loan with a view to a permanent move in 2009. However, the midfielder failed to fulfil his potential and didn't make a single appearance for the club.
Barnes struggled with an Achilles injury, so it was no surprise that boss Hodgson rejected the chance to sign him for £2million at the end of the campaign.
After spells at West Brom and Doncaster, Barnes is now plying his trade in the MLS with Houston Dynamo.
4. Simon Elliott from Columbus Crew 2005-06
Chris Coleman signed New Zealand International Simon Elliott on a free transfer from MLS side Columbus Crew in 2006 after impressing against Fulham in a pre-season friendly the previous summer.
After making his debut in the FA Cup defeat to Leyton Orient, Elliot made a further 12 appearances for the Cottagers as they finished the campaign in mid-table. However, the midfielder missed the following season through injury and was eventually released in 2008 without adding to his tally.
5. Stanislas Manolev from PSV Eindhoven 2012-13
Martin Jol brought Stanislav Manolev in on loan from PSV Eindhoven as cover for Sascha Riether last January. Former Holland star Rene van der Gijp, who is now a popular pundit on Dutch TV, once dubbed the defender the worst right-back in Europe.
Manolev did little to ditch the tag during his short spell by the Thames. He played just five games, with Fulham failing to register a win with the Bulgarian in the side.
Unsurprisingly, Jol decided not to make the move permanent at the end of the season.