Coleman admits January fears

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Chris Coleman has admitted that he can do little to keep his star players at Fulham.

Steed Malbranque looks set to be the subject of interest from a variety of clubs during the January transfer window, as he continues to stall on signing a new deal with the West Londoners.

He has been linked with both Manchester United and Liverpool in the past, although Manchester City boss Stuart Pearce is also known to be a huge admirer.

It is also believed that Graeme Souness is exploring the possibility of adding Papa Bouba Diop to his Newcastle squad once transfer activity resumes, prompting Coleman to confess that, come the New Year, he will be able to do little more than cross his fingers and hope that his star duo stay with The Cottagers.

"Malbranque and Diop will be the ones mentioned," he admitted.

"There's nothing I can do about it. I have to keep them focused and I hope they will stay.

"It will be the same again this year as it was last year when the transfer window opens and we all try and hold on to our best players."