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Fulham are fuming over a fitness magazine which claims that their players are the fattest in the Premiership. The club demanded an explanation after Men’s Fitness printed an article on body mass index and claimed that Fulham’s players were the tubbiest in the top flight.

Their manager Chris Coleman, who prides himself on the fitness of his squad as any manager would, was not amused. And the club say the article is inaccurate.

The table drawn up by the magazine takes into account only body mass index, a figure calculated from height and weight. By this yardstick players who are particularly muscular or have large builds are labelled fat regardless of their fitness or absence of body fat.

A Fulham spokesman, flexing muscles with commendable restraint, said: “Fulham is very surprised that a magazine which attempts to publish material about fitness has published such ill-informed and irrelevant information.

“One of our players, Mark Pembridge, who is identified as being in the top five fattest players in the Premiership mentioned in the article, is a 5ft 7in player and has one of the lowest percentage body fat scores, one that would be deemed unhealthy for his performance should it fall much lower.

“We believe that Men’s Fitness needs to do its homework a little better before it makes such ridiculous claims, or perhaps its editor should simply watch a little Premiership football on the TV, where it becomes obvious that athletes competing in the English Premiership are some of the leanest and fittest in the country.”