Fulham await outcome of mystery striker bid

Fulham were today awaiting the outcome their attempt to buy at least one unnamed striker after Birmingham rejected their £3million offer for Cameron Jerome.

Cottagers boss Martin Jol yesterday revealed he had hedged his bets when moving for Jerome by identifying an alternative centre-forward to act as understudy to Bobby Zamora.

An injury scare suffered by Zamora prompted Jol to act to bolster his squad, with the former breaking his hand a week ago.

The 29-year-old is fit to play but the incident was a wake-up call for Jol, who may not have been at Fulham last season but knows all too well how badly they struggled during Zamora's four-month absence with a broken leg.

Jol is hardly short of strikers but he has only one target man.

"If there is a problem with Bobby, I have to create another formation," he said, revealing his failure to land Jerome had not spelt the end of his search.

"Of course, there are always players.

"Even abroad, there are one or two players we had a look at. We made a bid as well.

"If they accept it then we've got a new player.

"But if they don't, we go on like it is."

Jol admitted Zamora's injury record was a concern but denied his game time would need to be managed in the same way as Tottenham defender Ledley King

"Bobby's probably injured occasionally," said former Spurs boss Jol.

"Ledley King was different. Ledley King was out for seven months when I was there in the second year.

"That was a structural problem.

"With Bobby, it's not a big problem."

Zamora is a former White Hart Lane team-mate of King and has been linked with a return there in a swap deal with Peter Crouch.

Jol rubbished this, adding: "I would be silly to look for somebody else for him as a back-up player and then sell him."

Zamora suffered his latest injury in last Thursday's Europa League third qualifying round first leg at RNK Split after someone stood on his hand.

He will wear a cast in tonight's second leg at Craven Cottage, which will be Jol's first real test since taking charge, with the tie currently goalless.

"I think it's good for the team to play at a different level, a competitive level," Jol said.

"I still think 0-0 is good in an away match, but now we have to finish it."

Source: PA