Brede Hangeland ends speculation over his future after agreeing new contract with Fulham

Defender has signed a two-year deal

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The Independent Football

Brede Hangeland will delight Fulham fans today with the announcement that he has signed a new contract, ending months of speculation about his future.

The club captain has been a key player for the Cottagers since he was signed by Roy Hodgson in January 2008, and a new two-year deal, with the option of a third, is a deserved reward for the Norwegian and a great relief for manager Martin Jol.

The Dutch coach revealed last month that an agreement was close, and the news will come as a welcome boost ahead of their west London derby with relegation-threatened Queens Park Rangers on Monday.

"I'm so happy, delighted," Hangeland said on

"It's taken a long time but we're there now and I hope the club is happy - I'm certainly really happy to have signed.

"I've loved my time with Fulham. It's been a little over five years and I've felt right at home from the very first game.

"I couldn't really see myself leaving, so to finally have signed gives me a great feeling."

Jol will hope his signing will be the first of many, as the club have a number of players available to leave on a free transfer in the summer, and unless this starts a domino effect, Fulham may find themselves with a depleted squad going into the pre-season programme.

Fulham players out of contract in 2013: Mladen Petric, Mark Schwarzer, Chris Baird, Mahamadou Diarra, Giorgos Karagounis, Neil Etheridge.