Hughes commits future to Cottagers

Fulham centre-back Aaron Hughes admits he is “delighted” to have put pen to paper on a new contract to keep him at Craven Cottage until 2013.

The 30-year-old Northern Ireland captain has established an effective partnership in defence with Brede Hangeland, who last week agreed a deal himself to stay for the same period.

Both have played key roles in helping the club qualify for the Europa League and they are currently in the top half of the Premier League ahead of this weekend’s clash against Sunderland.

“I’ve enjoyed my time at Fulham even during my first season when things weren’t going too well on the pitch so I’m delighted to have signed a new deal with the club,” Hughes said.

“The team has performed well all last year and this form has continued into this season so I’m really delighted that I will be here for a bit longer.”

Fulham boss Roy Hodgson, whose current deal expires at the end of the season, has agreed a new rolling contract, with club lawyers currently putting the paperwork together. Hodgson recently turned down approaches from Sweden and Norway about a return to international management.

“I can’t put a timescale on it but we are basically in agreement,” Hodgson said recently. “It seems everyone is keen for me to stay and I’ve always made it perfectly clear I’m happy to stay here.

“I’ve never made any secret of the fact I’m enjoying the club here. It’s just a question now of putting the contract discussions on to paper.”