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It seems we were very close to resigning Brian McBride towards the end of the transfer window.

Roy Hodgson wanted to bring the American forward back to Craven Cottage and McBride was eager to return to London, but his new club Chicago Fire vetoed the deal.

Hodgson was understandably disappointed.

We held talks with Brian, who was very interested in joining us, and it was very advanced talks.

We would even have agreed a loan deal for him, until the end of the season.

But Chicago finally turned down this option because they wanted to keep him for four important games.

The Chicago Fire technical director Frank Klopas said the proposed deal didn’t make sense for the Fire, who would have lost McBride for their first four games, as the American domestic season starts in late March.

Our main goal is to win a championship. Brian is an important part of that. It was important to have him here from the beginning. He came here late last season.

It speaks volumes about the guy that they’re still after him.

It is a shame that Chicago wouldn’t let us have McBride back – even on a short-term loan – but you can see their point of view. McBride would have been an invaluable voice around the training ground: it was noticeable during his previous spell here that he was very happy to pass on advice to his fellow players and talk to the fans as well.