Chris Coleman is adamant club captain Luis Boa Morte will not be leaving Craven Cottage as Fulham prepare for a summer spending spree.
Boa Morte, a target for Newcastle last year, is reportedly on Benfica’s wish list despite having signed a new five-year contract in September.
The 27-year-old Portuguese winger raised doubts over his future last week by stating he could score important goals for another club, but Coleman insists his words were twisted in translation.
And the Fulham boss is confident Boa Morte is in full support of his plans for the summer with chairman Mohamed Al Fayed bankrolling a recruitment drive.
“This has happened so many times with our boys, they speak to a reporter in their own country and it comes back in a bad light. Boa has a long contract with us,” he said.
“I’ve sat down with Luis, told him where we’re trying to go and what players we’re trying to sign. He’s a big part of that.
“We want to build a team around Luis, Steed Malbranque and Papa Bouba Diop – our best players. I don’t take any notice of these type of comments.
“When I was skipper Kevin Keegan, Paul Bracewell and Jean Tigana did the same with me. The captain of the club has a big responsibility and it’s important he knows what direction we’re going in.”
Coleman added: “We need to invest in the squad and the chairman has given me a chunk of money, more than he has in the past anyway.
“We haven’t talked about how much money I’ll get. I’ve told the chairman the positions we need to strengthen in and told him what we need to invest to be a top-10 club.
“I’ve had his full backing in that and he’s fully on board. How much it will cost to get the players we want remains to be seen.”
Coleman has done some shrewd business in the transfer market with Diop and Collins John two examples of players signed for small sums who would now command large fees if sold.
And the former Wales centre-back admits he will have to be canny again as he searches for possible signings in the build up to the World Cup.
“You’re judged on your buys. Sometimes it’s more luck than judgement but I’m happy with my own record because we’ve brought in some good players for the money spent,” Coleman added.
“We’ve been cute in the transfer market, bringing some great players in for next to nothing. Of course we’ll be having a look at the World Cup, but we’ll have to get the players before it kicks off.
“In previous seasons I’ve gone to the Under-21s World Cup. We signed Collins from a youth tournament. He was playing for a Dutch Under-18 team at the time.”