COTTAGERS AGREE DEAL FOR STEED
By Peter O`Rourke
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
The 21-year-old midfielder recently revealed that he had received an offer from Fulham, but that he preferably wanted to stay with Lyon if he could play regular first team football.
Malbranque, who found himself on the sidelines for most of last season also admitted that if he could not be guaranteed regular action in Le Championnat he would consider a move to Craven Cottage.
The player has a clause in his contract which allows him to leave if a team pays a fee of £4.5 million for him and Fulham have reached a deal with the French side.
Cottagers boss Jean Tigana is a long-term admirer of the French youth international and the move seems to be very close to being finalised.
Fulham know all about the talents of Malbranque, as Tigana's assistant Christian Damiano coached the player for the French Under-18 team.
Malbranque is expected to travel to London on Monday to discuss terms with Fulham officials and undergo a routine medical before signing for the West London outfit.
Should he complete his move to Craven Cottage he will become Tigana's third new signing of the summer following the arrivals of Luis Boa Morte from Southampton and Abdeslam Ouaddou from Nancy thus ending Tigana's search for a major signing.