Steve Sidwell has urged Fulham to agree a new contract with captain Brede Hangeland as soon as possible.
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The Norwegian's current deal runs out at the end of the season and, although manager Martin Jol believes there will be no complications, Sidwell feels the club cannot afford to wait given the supposed interest of the likes of Arsenal.
Hangeland returned to the side on Monday after a three-game suspension following a red card against Sunderland, and it was notable that Fulham then secured their first win in eight games with a 2-1 victory over Newcastle United.
"You want to keep all of your best players," Sidwell said. "His partnership with [Aaron Hughes] has been instrumental to the club's success throughout the past few years.
"You want to keep your best players to progress as a football club in the Premier League. We lost [Danny] Murphy last year skipper-wise and Brede was a natural leader on the pitch when Murph was here.
"It was natural for him to get it and obviously his presence and performances week in, week out, you very rarely see him have a bad game. We obviously want to keep him. Full stop.
"Brede is a stalwart for the club. I'm not sure how many games he has missed in his time here. Obviously, when he doesn't play he is sorely missed so just having him around the place lifts the players.
"Having him on the pitch as well, with him being our skipper, gives everyone a buzz. Defending from the back, he pushes up and I thought he was brilliant [on Monday]."
Information from the Press Association was used in this report