• Premier League

Jol desperate to keep Schwarzer at Fulham

ESPN staff
March 31, 2013 « Di Canio leading contender for Sunderland vacancy | Chartbeat test »
Martin Jol wants Mark Schwarzer to stay at Fulham beyond the 2014 World Cup © Getty Images
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Fulham manager Martin Jol insists goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer can keep going for at least another two years in the Premier League.

Schwarzer, 40, has been instrumental in Fulham securing a mid-table berth with eight matches remaining this season, and Jol sees no reason why he cannot continue to do a first-rate job at Craven Cottage.

The form of the veteran, who will play a crucial role over the next three months for Australia as they aim to secure a World Cup berth, is the reason David Stockdale is on loan at Championship side Hull.

And Jol accepts he might have to let 27-year-old Stockdale go permanently. "David wants to be a No. 1," said Jol, whose side take on relegation-threatened QPR on Monday night in a West London derby which has huge significance, in particular, for Harry Redknapp's side, who are seven points from safety.

"I'm always looking for a good goalkeeper. I've got another good goalkeeper who's 23, Neil Etheridge, and he's very talented, but he needs to play.

"So maybe we will put him on loan. Stockdale is already on loan; so I have a problem. We need one or two goalkeepers. Hopefully we can get competition for places because that's ideal."

Fulham's priority, however, is to sign up Schwarzer on a new contract which Jol hopes will extend beyond the 2014 World Cup.

"He [Schwarzer] can go on for the next one or two years but it's not like he is 22 and has another ten years left in him," Jol said.

"But how old are goalkeepers? If you look for evidence of them being 44-45, I can't see it. So 40 is quite remarkable. They [Australia] will go to the World Cup and he wants to be there. He will be 42 and then he will come back to us, hopefully."

Jol believes Fulham, on 36 points, require two wins to guarantee survival and expects a fierce scrap with QPR, who lie second bottom and are fighting for their Premier League survival. "This is a home game, a derby game, they are desperate for three points and we can use them as well," he said.

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