Chelsea’s forgotten man who gave Frank Lampard an £8m transfer boost as first January exit

Michael Hector is in line to make his Fulham debut against Aston Villa in the FA Cup this weekend after finally completing his £8million move from Chelsea following the opening of the transfer window.

The 27-year-old from East London agreed to make the short journey from Stamford Bridge to Craven Cottage in September having been told that he would not be part of Frank Lampard’s plans.

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While the deal was agreed and announced by the Sky Bet Championship club in September, Hector is not eligible until the third round meeting with Villa because the final paperwork had to be completed within the window. As a result he was not part of the Fulham squad that lost 2-1 to Reading this afternoon.

Hector has been allowed to train with his new club, however, and played in a couple of friendlies behind closed doors.

Speaking in September, he said: “It was an easy decision to make. My mum’s from Fulham, so it’s nice to join a club that some of my family support. It’s good to now be a part of the setup here. Hopefully things can work out well and we can get promoted.”

He signed for Chelsea from Reading in 2015 but did not make a single competitive appearance for the first team, heading out on four separate loan moves.

The centre back, a Jamaica international, was a regular for Sheffield Wednesday last season, having previously had spells at Hull, Eintracht Frankfurt and back at Reading.

Following today’s 1-1 draw away to Brighton & Hove Albion, Lampard, who has a £150m kitty this month, indicated that he will be tight-lipped regarding Chelsea’s transfer plans this month.

“If we have to do business we will do it in the way we see fit to try and make us better and that’s behind closed doors as opposed to just announcing who we might want to bring in,” he said.