Elm targets Swedish cap after impressive start for Fulham

Striker desperate to follow his two brothers into the international set-up
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The Independent Football

Striker David Elm is hoping Fulham can help him to emulate his more famous brothers by getting him into the Sweden team. The club's manager Roy Hodgson failed to sign Swedish international Rasmus Elm last summer but decided to take a chance on the midfielder's brother instead.

At £500,000, Elm's signing may turn out to be a real steal after his impressive performance in Fulham's 3-0 win over Burnley at Craven Cottage on Tuesday night. Elm laid on the first goal for captain Danny Murphy with a cushioned header and then scored his first for the club when he slipped the ball beyond Brian Jensen on the half-hour.

The 27-year-old striker was signed from Swedish champions Kalmar FF and although he initially found it hard to adapt to English football, he is now pushing for an extension to his one-year deal. "It has been difficult coming from Sweden to the Premier League," said Elm. "There is a big difference in the tempo of the game here and it is more aggressive but I have been patient and I took my chance when I got it against Burnley.

"Fulham told me before I joined that I was an interesting player and it would be exciting to see if I could make the step. I knew it was going to be tough but I never had any second thoughts. I love it here. The dream scenario is that I can get a lot of time playing here."

Long-term injuries to Andrew Johnson and Clint Dempsey plus the departures of Seol Ki-Hyeon and Diomansy Kamara have allowed Elm to flourish. He is desperate to emulate brothers Rasmus, 21, and Viktor, 24, by playing for Sweden and there is every chance of him achieving that goal after impressing Hodgson.

"At the time David came in, we had quite a lot of forward players but he's moved very quickly up the pecking order and he's shown that he deserves to be there," said Hodgson. "He's probably the least famous of the three brothers. Rasmus was the one who had attracted the most attention, both ourselves and Everton were very keen to sign him. He eventually chose to go to AZ Alkmaar. Viktor was already at Heerenveen and I don't think David was really expecting a foreign club to come in for him.

"I have some contacts in Sweden, everyone spoke very well of him and I must say he's been a bit of a revelation."

Meanwhile, Burnley boss Brian Laws believes the nation are behind his team as they look to end their away-day hoodoo. The club are yet to win away from Turf Moor and in a bid to re-charge their batteries, the Clarets have headed for a three-day break in the sun.

After taking just one point from a possible 39 on their travels, Laws insists the players would be doing their utmost to put an end to the miserable run in the last six away fixtures.

He is hoping they can find the key during their short stint in Portugal. "I think we are getting to a point where the nation will feel sorry for us and want us to get a point," said Laws. "We will be trying ever so hard to put it right and we have a good opportunity now, going to Portugal, to look a little deeper and break down what is triggering these defeats.

"We will get this result somewhere. It may be Aston Villa, it may be Arsenal, but we will keep banging at it and trying to change things. We're not going to give up on our away performances."

He also paid tribute to the Burnley fans who made the long trip to West London and chanted his name throughout the second half. "The one positive we have is the supporters who made the trip," said Laws. "They have seen their team not play particularly well and get beat again, yet their support was unwavering."