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Fulham manager Slavisa Jokanovic is reportedly interested in making a January move for Watford defender Craig Cathcart. The Northern Irishman would potentially be a canny acquisition for the West London club.
The centre-back played for Jokanovic during his own time at Watford as manager when the Hornets were successful in gaining promotion from the Championship in the 2014/15 season. Clearly, the coach is still a big admirer of Cathcart.
Cathcart, who has played just once in the Premier League so far this season, is still just 28 years old and is potentially just reaching his peak as a central defender. Along with that comes the fact that he is a part of the Northern Ireland national side riding the crest of a wave right now and so the confidence he could bring to a promotion chasing squad could prove vital.
However, there are more than a few potential complications in this potential deal. Firstly, there is the fact that Cathcart signed a fresh four-year deal at Vicaage Road this summer and so his club would likely look for a sizeable fee.
As well as this, there is the fact that neither manager involved, Marco Silva or Jokanovic, really have much say in the transfer business despite them seeming to have very differing views on the player. The respective clubs may not even enter into talks.
Lastly, Cathcart has also suffered a knee injury and this is something which will concern the recruiters at Fulham, especially if they are required to pay a large fee for his services. Even with his injury in mind, it is surprising to realise that Cathcart was not named in Marco Silva’s official list of 25 Premier League squad players and it seems he is not desperately required there.
All that said though, it is not beyond the realms of possibility for Jokanovic to go to his board and ask them to enquire about the possibility of bringing the former Manchester United youngster to Craven Cottage at the turn of the year.
The player will want game time and should it start to look more likely that Fulham could be a Premier League club next season, then the move would look very attractive to the player. His experience and nous could be vital to the Cottagers in them getting over the line, in what was always going to be a very competitive season in the Championship. Watch this space.