Garbutt joins Fulham on loan

, 25 July, 29comments  |  Jump to most recent

Roberto Martinez has followed through on his commitment to allow Luke Garbutt to spend the coming season on loan with the announcement that the left back has joined Fulham.

The 21-year-old recently signed a new five-year contract with Everton following months of speculation regarding his future and while he was briefly linked with Premier League newcomers, Bournemouth, it is the Cottagers who will offer him the prospect of regular first-team football.

Roberto Martinez is no doubt hoping that Garbutt's experience will mirror that of another fullback, Seamus Coleman, who spent a spell on loan in the Championship with Blackpool under David Moyes's reign and returned ready to stake his claim for a regular place in the Blues' senior side.

"Luke is ready to go on loan and gain playing time and experience which will further help his development and, ultimately, help him to fulfil his potential," Martinez told

"He has all the talent in the world with his cultured left foot and he will shine and be a massive asset in the Fulham team and in their dressing room.

"This was always the plan for Luke after he impressed last season and regular, competitive football is the next step in his development. In his position, he is one of the most talented young players in England."


Reader Comments (29)

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Jim Bennings
1 Posted 25/07/2015 at 16:40:28
Should this not have been done 12 months ago?

Whatever way you look at it, it's another one out the door for a whole season.

Its fast becoming annoying.

Jamie Crowley
2 Posted 25/07/2015 at 16:41:58
So it's Baines and Oviedo at LB.

Would I prefer Luke to stay and play more at Everton? Yes.

Will Luke develop playing more games at this level? Yes.

It's a move that whereas I'd take a different path were I personally in charge, I completely understand it and trust Roberto in this regard.

Good luck Luke! Light it up at Fulham kid. And be ready to come back if Oviedo goes down!

Oh, and please get Fulham back in the top flight. I sorely miss Craven Cottage done up at Christmas time...

Anthony Jaras
3 Posted 25/07/2015 at 16:55:00
This move makes perfect sense to me.

Baines is clearly our first choice LB and the frustration that Garbutt clearly felt - which resulted in him debating whether to leave or not - meant that this was the only option if he stayed.

We have Baines, Oviedo and Galloway for the LB spot.

Luke can get a full season under his belt and come back even better than he already is.

I reckon he will grab a few goals and assists while he is down there, which will add to his game.

Wise move for everyone concerned.

Nigel Gregson
4 Posted 25/07/2015 at 17:05:11
I just hope he doesn't get his head turned in while living in London. There are temptations aplenty over here, and the lad needs to really get stuck in, focus purely on playing minutes this season.
James Stewart
5 Posted 25/07/2015 at 17:12:47
Would have made more sense to loan him to a premier league clue. He's already too good for the championship so fail to see much point in this
Derek Knox
6 Posted 25/07/2015 at 17:31:44
While I am all for players getting further experience, in Luke’s case, I hope we don’t regret this move.

Oviedo, while a decent player, is somewhat injury prone. Leighton Baines is obviously our Number One left-back, although I feel he has never been the same player, since the Man Utd. transfer speculation that kept rearing its ugly head.

I just hope that there is a call-back clause in Luke’s contract with Fulham, should we find ourselves thin on the ground. Otherwise I wish him all the best, and hope he returns even better.

Jim Knightley
7 Posted 25/07/2015 at 17:38:18
I don't think Garbutt is too good for the Championship. He has a great left football, but he has weaknesses to his game. The likes of Cresswell and Baines have come up from the Championship, and both had more refined games than Garbutt. He needs games now, not to be sitting on our bench, or the bench of any other Premiership clubs.

I'm pleased with this, and I hope one of Browning and Galloway follows once we add another CB to the team. Some excellent players over recent times and historically have go on loan to Championship clubs to gain experience and playing time. This will do Garbutt good.

Gavin Johnson
8 Posted 25/07/2015 at 17:36:26
It’s good that Garbutt will finally be playing, week-in & week-out, but whatever happened to the Villa and Bournemouth links?! Going to Fulham probably sheds some light on why he signed his contract extension... Could it be the mooted moves to the likes of the RS and Swansea were just unsubstantiated rumours and it’s just Everton fans that really rate the lad? Just saying.

Jay Harris
9 Posted 25/07/2015 at 17:48:01
I think this is a good move all round.

Garbutt will get regular games to improve his match fitness.

There is a bit more physicality in the Championship to toughen him up and the pace will not be too much for him to adjust to.

Tony Abrahams
10 Posted 25/07/2015 at 17:45:19
Tend to agree with Jim, rather than James. Great left foot, the kid has got to learn to defend. The Championship should do him the world of good. Regular first team football, if he can hold down his place in the Fulham team.
John Maddock
11 Posted 25/07/2015 at 18:15:37
I’m really happy with this move. He is going to a club where he will be the first choice LB and therefore get plenty of game time.

The Championship will help him develop his defensive side as many games at this level are about grit and hard graft, particularly from a defensive aspect. Additionally, his natural attacking ability will be exploited here by Fulham in addition to refining his dead ball delivery (which is pretty good already).

Good deal all round, as we know he is being groomed as Leighton’s long-term successor.

Dave Abrahams
12 Posted 25/07/2015 at 18:28:43
What does this move mean to Everton? Are Fulham paying all of Luke’s wages and are Fulham paying a loan fee for his services? Does anyone know the terms of this transfer?

By the way, I wish Garbutt well and hope he improves his game at Fulham.

Eddie Dunn
13 Posted 25/07/2015 at 18:35:49
It is spot on not to loan him to another Premier League club, as any of them could be competing against us for a vital place (5th? or 16th). We would be kicking ourselves if he weighed-in with 5 important goals and 5 assists for a rival outfit.

I hope he stays injury-free, and presume that we will be able to get him back should our left-backs get injured.

James Stewart
14 Posted 25/07/2015 at 18:51:36
The interest from Bournemouth and Swansea was very real. Perhaps Martinez feels he doesn’t want to strengthen a rival as there is a possibility Swansea might finish above us again.

Seems more likely to me than there not being any EPL interest in Garbutt who is already a Premier League class player. He had a big role in the Wolfsburg game which many cite as our best performance last season, lets not forget.

Harold Matthews
15 Posted 25/07/2015 at 18:29:24
Needs to erase his defensive weaknesses and will definitely benefit from a run of games in the Championship.
Gavin Johnson
16 Posted 25/07/2015 at 18:49:09
I don’t understand the reluctance to loan him to another Premier League club myself. Personally I’d want him to play at the highest level and for us to reap the rewards in terms of experience and increasing his sell-on value, instead of it being the other way round with us improving other clubs young prospects.

I suspect, he’s gone to the Championship because no other Premier League clubs were interested in taking him on the proviso he would play every week.

Brin Williams
17 Posted 25/07/2015 at 19:46:20
The biggest thing he can gain from this move to the Championship, and I do like Fulham, is confidence.

Develop his game while showing confidence in his ability as a Premier League Player.

There is no disgrace in taking a step backwards in order to take two forward.

Fulham is a club with 'history' and had the great Johnny Haines - what more can I say.

John Pickles
18 Posted 25/07/2015 at 19:32:49
Let’s say he does really well and comes back with an even more enhanced reputation, with everyone saying he is ready for the Premier League. Then what? Surely we are back with the same problem.

Does Roberto say to him "Sorry son, I can’t drop the England left back, I’ll play you in some cup games." Or does he say to Leighton, "Luke’s time has come for Premier League matches, I’m benching you or trying you in another position."

Unless he doesn’t deliver for Fulham or Leighton leaves or is long-term injured, the issue is going to be more pronounced next season.

Then, of course, there is Oviedo....

Neil Thomas
19 Posted 25/07/2015 at 19:51:23
James and Jim,

I understand where you're coming from, saying why a Championship team... but the lad needs to play every week, at a Premier League club that’s not guaranteed. I think this move will be perfect for the lad.

James Flynn
20 Posted 25/07/2015 at 20:23:02
Why would another EPL club take him without an Option-to-Buy clause included? Otherwise, it’s sitting your own, contracted, player to help another EPL club’s player develop.

Can’t see that happening.

He needs games. Hopefully, he’s keeps his head on straight at Fulham and piles up the playing time.

Jim Jennings
21 Posted 25/07/2015 at 20:43:36
Have to agree with James Flynn. Can't see why Villa or Swansea would want him on loan without a view to buy. It's make or break time for Garbutt.
Roman Sidey
23 Posted 25/07/2015 at 21:31:13
John @ 17, I think we’re highly likely to find ourselves in the same situation we were in when Seamus came back from Blackpool. Baines will be pushing 32 when Garbutt returns from Fulham, and you can’t exactly say that Baines’s stock is rising.

I wouldn’t go as far as saying that he is on the way out, but he certainly is at an age where most players have reached their pinnacle.

I love Oviedo, but he does seem injury prone, and, for me, would be of better use where Pienaar used to play. Therefore, my prediction is Garbutt to start at LB this time next year.

Chester Barnes
24 Posted 25/07/2015 at 22:15:23
Possibly a sweetener for a move for Dembele (but doubt it). At Garbutt's age he needs regular games. A good move in my opinion.
Gavin Johnson
25 Posted 25/07/2015 at 22:04:57
Roman - Using Coleman is a good comparison. Let's hope he comes back after the season loan and makes a similar impact. With Oviedo being out of contract next summer and Baines being another year older, it’s feasible he could become our first choice fullback if Baines and Oviedo’s injury woes continue.
Tony Dove
26 Posted 25/07/2015 at 23:27:08

Not sure what the great Johnny Haynes has really got to do with the future of Luke but I think what you mean is that Fulham are a decent club with a good pedigree [like us] and it will be good for him. Not sure about Jimmy Hill and Tommy Trinder though.

Richard Reeves
27 Posted 26/07/2015 at 00:08:13
Some players can cope in the Premier League and not in the Championship and vice versa so I was hoping he would get Premier League experience with another club.

But if there are no takers then what can you do?
Christopher Kelly
29 Posted 26/07/2015 at 10:10:03
I’m of the mind that if you’re good enough for the Premier League, Premier League teams will be in for you or make room. They’ll find a way...They have not, so Garbutt must stay extremely focused as this is a life-changing year. I hope he does well but it is what it is at this moment...

He’s not a savior, but a diamond for the future. I’m very glad he signed. It’s a good statement for the club. He sees a future which is paramount in this situation. Hope more agree.

John Pickles
30 Posted 26/07/2015 at 09:16:34
Roman #22

I like the comparison and I agree with your logic, but I don't know that it will be that straightforward.

Baines still has 2 or 3 seasons at the top in him and he wants to continue being considered for England. He is not going to be happy handing over his place for club or country. He is also a popular, loyal servant of the club, a real Evertonian, who has given his best years for the cause. Initially until Luke settles into the role, he will also be a less error prone choice, a left back's mistakes make bigger headlines than their assists.

Also, how committed is Luke to Everton, he likes examining his options before resigning any new contract. If he is given the position, has a couple of great seasons who's to say he won't be demanding a transfer to a rich club as soon as they show interest.

It therefore takes a brave, confident manager to replace the 'present' with the 'future'. Alex Ferguson would do it but I don't know that many others will.

Tom Evans
31 Posted 26/07/2015 at 10:22:08
Seamus didn’t do too bad by being loaned out a few years back.

A season of full-time football will do Luke a world of good.

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