Fulham manager Chris Coleman is preparing a bid for Southend striker Freddy Eastwood as he attempts to shore up a squad hit by injuries.

After goalkeeper Antti Niemi joined the wounded list with a severe neck strain in Monday’s match against Watford, Coleman has been forced into urgent action in this month’s transfer window.

Coleman is already set to sign American Clint Dempsey and Roma striker Vincenzo Montella, and the addition of Eastwood to his attack could spell the exit of Collins John.

Eastwood, who has been valued at £5 million by Southend chairman Ron Martin, has been a consistently strong performer for the Championship club and came to prominence this season with a spectacular free-kick against Manchester United in the Carling Cup. Coleman could face stiff competition from Portsmouth for the player’s services.