Opinion: Why QPR star Eze is not what Fulham need right now

Ebere Eze is wanted by Fulham, who appear ready to close the gap on the £20m asking fee demanded by QPR.

But why?

A Premier League club would argue that two for every position is a given, and that’s where the coveted 22-year-old fits in.

But make no mistake.

Fulham captain Tom Cairney and Eze are pretty much the same player.

Neither are lightning quick, but both have a magnificent first touch; along with vision and control of the space in midfield.

They each bag their fair share of goals.

Last season, Cairney hit eight in all competitions from 43 appearances, but was thought by many Whites fans to be a steady 7/10, and not quite the same force that sent Fulham to the Premier League in 2017.

Not that goals were a problem to Scott Parker’s side.

After all, they finished with Aleksandar Mitrovic as the Championship’s leading scorer on 26, and winner of the Golden Boot.

Eze’s fine contribution of 14 goals for the R’s was more varied.

Shots from distance, Cairney’s forté, as well as close-in finishes from every angle were a godsend to a club short of firepower, especially after Nahki Wells’ departure to Bristol City in January.

Eze has also played on the wing, notably on the left, but Cairney too has done his stint hugging the Cottage right touchline when required.

The latter has a contract keeping at Fulham until 2024, and Cairney in the role of understudy is unlikely.

He is a Cottage favourite, and being left out at the expense of an Eze would not sit well with the 29-year-old.

Fulham captain Tom Cairney
Cairney has been a key player for Fulham

The current Fulham set-up utilises two speedy wingers with Cairney at the centre of midfield, and often a second forward playing off Mitrovic.

Is this where Eze could be used instead? Or would he be willing to warm a Premier League bench – at least at the outset?

Would the ambitious talent think his chances better somewhere else like Crystal Palace or West Ham, where his first-team hopes might be realised all the sooner?

As it stands, both Eze and Cairney in the same Fulham team appears far-fetched.

But both in the same club would send out a serious message Fulham have no intention of repeating their hapless 2018-19 role as the Premier League’s cannon fodder.