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Powell backs former Stoke striker to be big hit at Valley
RICARDO Fuller is a signing who will excite the Charlton fans and has the potential to light up the Championship insists Addicks boss Chris Powell.
The former Stoke and Portsmouth striker penned a one-year deal on Tuesday evening and was paraded to the Charlton fans at half-time during the 2-1 victory over Leicester City.
Powell’s side led 2-0 at the break thanks to goals from front pairing Bradley Wright-Phillips and former Fox Yann Kermorgant.
City threw everything at Charlton in the second half and pulled one back when sub Andy King swept home eight minutes after the restart.
But key saves late on from Ben Hamer to deny Lloyd Dyer, Anthony Knockaert and Jamie Vardy ensured Powell’s men earned themselves the three points in their first home game in the second tier for three years.
The signing of Fuller was Charlton’s fifth of the summer and came 24 hours after Paul Hayes departed for League One Brentford.
Powell said: “We’ve been chasing Ricardo for a while.
“He’s a Premier League player who will excite us, this is a statement of intent from us that we want to get better and improve.
“We want to get the best out of him and I spoke to many people about him before bringing him in.
“Tony Pulis was fantastic with regards to what he said about Ricardo.
“So I’m pleased that he’s come in and it was good for him to see us and to see what we are all about.
“He’s going to excite us, that’s for sure, but we want to make sure he is fit and raring to go before we get him in the A-team.”
The forward had found his opportunities limited at the Britannia Stadium in recent seasons due to a number of injuries and the arrival of high-profile strikers such as England international Peter Crouch and Kenwyne Jones.
But Addicks chief Powell has no fear over the fitness of his new recruit, although he hinted it may be a couple of weeks before the Jamaica international features in the first team.
The manager added: “I wouldn’t sign any player without making sure he was OK for us.
“His fitness is fine, but obviously he isn’t match fit.
“He’s been keeping himself fit and has played for Jamaica towards the end of June, so he won’t be too far off.
“Of course, though, you need matches.
“No matter how many runs in the gym or on the road that you do, you need football work - football work with a group of players.
“He’ll get that here, we’ll make sure we get games arranged to build up his fitness and then we’ll introduce him to the first team when the time is right.”
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