Coleman can't force Steed
By Graeme Bailey
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Chris Coleman admits he cannot force Steed Malbranque into signing a new contract.Chris Coleman admits he cannot force Steed Malbranque into signing a new contract.
The French midfielder has 18 months remaining on his current contract and Fulham want him to sign an extension.
However, Malbranque was recently quoted as saying that he was in no hurry to commit to the West London club.
Coleman, though, insists that Malbranque's recent quotes were reported inaccurately.
"I saw the comments in a paper," he told Sky Sports News.
"I knew exactly what Steed said and what came out of his mouth was not put in the right context but that's what the media are for, I understand that."
Malbranque's future has been under the spotlight since the summer when Manchester City lodged a bid for him, while Aston Villa, Newcastle and Middlesbrough have all been credited with an interest.
Coleman has recently managed to persuade now captain Luis Boa Morte to commit his long-term future to the club and he is hoping that Malbranque will soon do the same.
"If Steed doesn't want to sign a contract, there is nothing I or anyone else can do about that," Coleman opined.
"If you watch Steed play for Fulham he doesn't look like a player not trying, not happy or not committed.
"He's fully committed, he's playing some great football.
"He has got 18 to 20 months left on his contract and of course he is a player we want to keep.
"We want to extend his contract and we want to sit down and discuss it.
"I can't stop speculation, I can't stop any of my players being misquoted.
"We have got an excellent player, playing his heart out for his team and long may that continue."