Bryan Ruiz: 5 Things To Know About Fulham's New Striker
Fulham have finalized the signing of Costa Rican striker Bryan Ruiz from FC Twente for a fee rumoured to be in the region of £10.5million. They successfully completed the signing shortly before the transfer deadline despite a rival offer from Newcastle.
If the Fulham deal comes through, Ruiz will join Marseille striker Andre-Pierre Gignac, who has joined on loan, at the Craven Cottage club and may be seen as a replacement for Clint Dempsey, who is rumoured to be interesting Paris St. Germain and has also been linked to Arsenal in recent days.
Ruiz is by no means a household name, and Fulham fans may be curious as to just who it is that manager Martin Jol has chosen to splash such a large amount of money on.
With that in mind, I thought I'd put together a short slideshow to introduce the player and give you five facts about him.
I hope you enjoy.
Full Name: Bryan Ruiz Gonzalez
Date Of Birth: 18 August 1985
Place of Birth: Alajuela, Costa Rica
Favoured Position: Winger/Striker
International Caps: 43
International Goals: 9
Played for Alajuelense in Costa Rica from 2003 until 2006. Made 83 appearances, scored 24 goals.
Played for K.A.A. Gent in Belgium from 2006 until 2009. Made 76 appearances, scored 26 goals.
Played for FC Twente in Holland from 2009 until 2011. Made 61 appearances, scored 39 goals.
Goal Maker and Goal Taker
Ruiz is a very capable goalscorer but is also capable of creating chances for others due to his excellent first touch, and his towering presence in the air. Ruiz has a great leap to aid his height and is very adept at laying the ball into team-mates feet with his head.
The best player to compare him to in England is probably Dirk Kuyt in terms of his ability to score and make goals for others. He's a far more refined player than Kuyt but could join Kuyt as a player who regular manages double figures in goals and assists.
Ruiz can play as both a striker and also as winger, which is also one of the reasons I compared him to Kuyt on the previous slide.
With Andrew Johnson, Moussa Dembele, Bobby Zamora and possibly Gignac also at Fulham, Martin Jol will have some great options at his disposal and may choose to utilize Ruiz on the wing.
He has good pace and is a decent crosser of the ball. His main weapon on the wing however would be his ability to attack crosses from the opposite wing.
Damien Duff has played a lot of his football with Fulham on the right wing, but Jol may look to move him back to his natural position on the left where his quality crosses could spark a flurry of goals from Ruiz who could attack them by coming in off his wing and finding space in the channel between the central defender and left-back.
Ruiz has won team and personal honours throughout his career including league titles with Alajuelense and Twente, as well as having cup success at both clubs.
A winning attitude is something Jol will want in his team as he looks to lead them towards a top eight finish, and perhaps have an outside shot at a Europa League spot.
Ruiz was also voted player of the year at Gent in 2009 and Twente in 2010, which gives the impression that he is a player capable of being a star for Fulham.
A Bit of a Coup
While Ruiz is not a player well known to English fans, he is a player that a number of top clubs have considered signing over the last year or so.
Aside from Newcastle, Arsenal have been linked to him as well. While £10.5million is a lot of money, it does look like it will land Fulham a very good player who has, in the past, caught the eye of some of the Premier League's top clubs.
As I write this, the deal has not been finalized but does appear to be a near certainty. I will update when I hear more.
Thanks for reading. Hope you've found this article to be helpful in getting to know a player who could be a new star for Fulham.