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Fulham manager Chris Coleman says he is confident that Papa Bouba Diop will sign a new contract with the club.

Negotiations with the Senegalese midfielder, whose current deal expires at the end of the season, are now at an advanced stage.

“I would be amazed now if we don’t keep Diop. It isn’t signed but it’s very close,” said Coleman.

Diop, 28, will return to action this weekend against Sunderland after three months out with a foot injury.

Coleman will be relieved to see Diop back after having previously been denied his services by his participation in the African Cup of Nations in Egypt.

And, after only substitute appearance for Fulham, he picked up an injury playing an international friendly in March.

“It will be a little bit of a gamble because he hasn’t played 90 minutes for us since the beginning of November,” said the Fulham boss.

“I would be surprised if he plays the 90 minutes.

“It could be he starts and doesn’t finish or we might bring him on later in the game.

“We need the points and it’s got to the stage where we’re having to take a bit of a chance on him even though he is lacking the match practice.”