SUNDERLAND 10 YEARS AGO: Marton Fulop ready to challenge Darren Ward

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Here’s what the Echo was reporting 10 years ago.


Lilywhites loan man will fight for keeper’s shirt

Marton Fulop is ready for the Daz challenge.

The Hungarian goalkeeper watched rival Darren Ward come to Sunderland’s rescue with a crucial late save at Queens Park Rangers.

And Fulop, set to join permanently from Spurs in January, knows it will take a lot to oust Ward in his current form.

The 23-year-old, on the bench for the first time at Loftus Road, said: “Darren is a good, experienced goalkeeper. He made a great save at the end against QPR and I saw his performance against Wolves on television, which was excellent.

“We both want to do well and in training we will both try to be better than each other, which is good for us. Whoever plays in the team has to do well and the other guy will be there supporting him on match day.

“I’ve been in England for two-and-a-half years now and I have come here to play games and try to establish myself.

“Roy Keane has told me that no-one is guaranteed a place in his team and that means we must all perform well and we will all get opportunities.

“In his current form, Darren will be difficult to leave out, but that is a good challenger for me.”

Fulop, who is 6ft 5in tall and has two senior caps for Hungary, spent most of last season on loan with Coventry City, playing 31 Championship appearances and two in the FA Cup.

He said: “When I joined Coventry, it was difficult. The club was fighting relegation but then we got close to the play-offs. The play-offs mean that promotion is a prospect for a lot of clubs and certainly for Sunderland. Six points is not a big gap and promotion is our only aim.”

The loan man is now looking forward to getting his first taste of the Stadium of Light when Sunderland host Norwich City on Saturday.

He added: “Coventry’s new stadium is excellent, but the Stadium of Light is bigger and if the amazing away fans we had at Queens Park Rangers are anything to go by our home support will be exciting to play for.”