McBride could return to Fulham of EPL, Altidore moves.
By Robert Wagman (in Washington, D.C.)
(Sunday, February 1, 2009) -- United States striker Brian McBride could be heading back to Fulham of the English Premier League, a club he left at the end of the 2007-08 EPL season.
According to the English media, Fulham manager Roy Hodgson has approached Major League Soccer to bring McBride back to Craven Cottage on loan from the Major League Soccer's Chicago Fire for the remainder of the EPL season. Such a loan possibly would allow McBride to return to Chicago after missing the first two months of the 2009 season.
McBride left Craven Cottage at the end of last season in order to return to his hometown of Chicago after five seasons with Fulham, where he scored 40 goals in 153 appearances. McBride, 36, was Fulham's captain and a fan favorite.
Goal.com reported a deal is close to being completed, as well as one to acquire 34-year-old French midfielder Olivier Dacourt. Fulham already obtained 20-year-old English attacker Giles Barnes on loan from Derby County of the second-tier English League Championship, but the West London club missed out on several of its transfer targets, including Manchester City striker Felipe Caicedo.
Fulham already allowed Danish defender-midfielder Leon Andreasen to join Hannover 96 of the German Bundesliga, as well as permitting midfielder Jimmy Bullard to move to Hull City of the League Championship in a deal worth reported to be worth around $7.26 million.
Any transaction would have to be completed by tomorrow, when the transfer window closes.
Fulham is in ninth place at 7-7-8 with 29 points. A year ago, the Cottagers had five Americans on their roster, but currently midfielder Clint Dempsey is the only one.
Villareal loans Altidore to Xerez
Villareal of Spain's Primera División has loaned U.S. striker Jozy Altidore to Deportivo Xerez of the second division for the rest of this season.
The 19-year old American scored once in six appearances for the Yellow Submarine. When he first arrived in Spain last summer, it was widely believed he would be loaned out to gain more playing time and experience. But Villarreal was hit by injuries to attackers and Altidore stayed with the first team although his playing time has been minimal.
Now, with players returning from injury, the club appears to have reverted to its original plan to let Altidore mature and gain experienced by playing.
Xerez (11-4-7, 38 points) is in first place of the Segunda División and is looking for Altidore to provide an offensive spark to help the club stay on track for promotion.
"This is a good opportunity for me because I will be able to get more playing time, which will help me adapt to this country and continue to develop my career," Altidore told Villarreal's web site.
Robert Wagman is SoccerTimes senior correspondent.
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