Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Cottage bye

Yes, time to say farewell again - this time to Damien Duff, whose move back to west London with Fulham has now been confirmed. The Cottagers are reported to have paid £4m for the Irishman's services, just shy of the £5m we paid Chelsea in 2006.

At the time, we welcomed Duff's arrival warmly as something of a coup, not least because Liverpool and Spurs were among those we pipped to his signature. But the move to Tyneside had its usual effect and he only very sporadically recaptured the sparkling form he'd shown for Blackburn that had induced the Blues to not waver or hesitate when shelling out £17m for him in 2003. All too often his name seemed worryingly appropriate.

Though he did notch a crucial equaliser in his final game in a black and white shirt to make very limited amends for the own goal that sent us down, Duff's goalscoring rate was generally poor, and I'd be hard-pushed to think of anything more frustrating than the perpetual sight of him being forced backwards towards his own goal by a pair of dogged markers, as though having completely forgotten how to beat a man.

So, good odds on a Duff hat-trick against former club Chelsea this weekend, then?


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