Fulham boss Marco Silva admits it is 'difficult to have control' in the transfer market after selling Aleksandar Mitrovic to Saudi Arabia and nearly losing Joao Palhinha to Bayern Munich on Deadline Day
- Marco Silva says the 'competitive' transfer market is difficult to control
- Joao Palhinha remained at Fulham but Aleksandar Mitrovic joined Al-Hilal
- Fulham completed the late signings of Alex Iwobi and Fode Ballo-Toure
Marco Silva admitted it is impossible for a club like Fulham to feel in control in the transfer market once better-resourced clubs start to show interest in their players.
The manager lost last season's top scorer Aleksandar Mitrovic to Saudi Arabian side Al-Hilal last month, and the final days of the transfer window were dominated by Bayern Munich's pursuit of midfielder Joao Palhinha.
The Bundesliga champions' move for the 28-year-old collapsed on Friday afternoon, owing to Fulham's determination not to lose the player so late in the window despite a significant offer from Bayern.
It has complicated Silva's preparations for his side's trip to the Etihad Stadium to face Manchester City on Saturday, with Palhinha's availability for the game still mired in uncertainty.
The club signed Alex Iwobi from Everton, a player that Silva previously bought when he was manager at Goodison Park, and picked up Fode Ballo-Toure on loan from Monaco, but the Portuguese boss conceded that doing business this late in the window was far from ideal.
Fulham manager Marco Silva has said it is difficult to feel in total control of transfer market
Joao Palhinha will remain a Fulham player after a late move to Bayern Munich collapsed
'We knew as a club, all the clubs, knew [the deadline] is [Friday] at 11,' said Silva.
'Everyone knew that. It's up to us to do things early or not, to have control of the situation, even if football is so competitive, the market is so competitive that sometimes it's difficult to have everything under control.'
Of Iwobi's development during the years since the pair last worked together, he added: 'I believe that a player after four or five seasons with more game time, more mature and all that stuff, playing in a club with big pressure every single week should be better, yes.'
It took a penalty from Erling Haaland in the fifth minute of stoppage time for City to defeat Fulham in last season's meeting at the Etihad, that after Andreas Pereira's spot-kick had cancelled out Julian Alvarez's early goal.
And it was a similarly close affair in the reverse meeting at Craven Cottage in April, Haaland and Alvarez again on the scoresheet in another 2-1 win for the champions.
Despite the difficulty in competing with the likes of City in the transfer market, Silva believes his team can still be a match for the European champions over 90 minutes.
'To compete with them in one game or two games is possible,' he said. 'I think last season we were competitive in both games with them.
'We lost by the details. They desired probably to get the points they got. But I think if the results had been different no one would have been really surprised.
Silva reunited with Alex Iwobi after signing the Nigerian from former club Everton for £22m
Fulham were narrowly beaten 2-1 by Treble winners Manchester City at the end of last season
'If they are the champions it is for one reason. If they keep doing good things it's because they are a really strong side. But we are going to try to be competitive again.'
Silva also backed his compatriot Matheus Nunes, who agreed to join Pep Guardiola's side from Wolves for £53m this week, to shine in the blue of City.
'Nunes will be a very good addition for them, because he's a young player with quality. He already showed that in the Premier League,' Silva added.
'In my opinion he's going to show, it was just the first season in the league for him. (Now) he's more adapted, growing as a player. He's going to show even more his quality.'
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