Starlet keen to flourish after Pompey move

Ryan Williams has joined Fulham in a �400,000 deal
Ryan Williams has joined Fulham in a �400,000 deal
Pompey midfielder Carl Baker Picture: Joe Pepler

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Ryan Williams believes his Fulham switch will enable him to develop as a footballer.

The 18-year-old last night completed a £400,000 transfer from Pompey to Craven Cottage.

He penned a two-and-a-half year deal after appearing as a triallist in a reserve-team fixture on Monday night, as first revealed by The News.

It is not yet known how much money Pompey will receive up front in the deal.

The loss of the highly-regarded Australian is a disappointment for the Blues.

Yet Williams was the only Fratton Park departure on a surprisingly quiet transfer window deadline day.

Williams had been fast-tracked into the first-team set-up under Steve Cotterill and recently established himself in Michael Appleton’s squad for the first time.

Now he has moved into the Premier League with Martin Jol’s Fulham. And he is confident the switch will benefit his promising career.

Williams said: ‘It has been a long few days.

‘I’ve signed a two-and-a-half year deal and I’m really happy to be part of a big club.

‘It’s such a big move to come to a Premier League club and it’s really for my footballing education and to play more games, maybe for the reserves. It’s just a big step forward for me.’

Williams burst into the Pompey squad this summer and was a pre-season regular under Cotterill.

He went on to make six first-team appearances, all as a substitute. His final Pompey appearance was as a substitute in the FA Cup defeat at Chelsea last month.

Andrew Andronikou was involved in fixing up an initial trial for Williams at Fulham on Monday night in a reserve-team match against Wolves.

From there, the Cottagers snapped him up in a deal totalling £400,000 which was completed narrowly before last night’s 11pm deadline.