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Fulham have confirmed the signing of Mali midfielder Mahamadou Diarra, subject to the successful granting of a visa.

The deal, heavily trailed in this morning’s Daily Mail, will see the former Real Madrid midfielder join Fulham until the end of the season, with an option for a one-year extension available. Now, 30, Diarra began his career with Greek outfit OFI Crete before joining Vitesse Arnhem but shot to prominence alongside Michael Essien at Lyon, helping the French giants to win four league titles.

His outstanding form for L’OM saw him join Real Madrid in 2006 for £22m and Diarra became a key part of Fabio Capello’s side. He made 122 appearances in his four years at Bernabeu, winning La Liga on two occasions before joining Monaco last January. Diarra has struggled with knee injuries – and that was the reason for his summer release by the principality’s club.