DAVID SMITH - Monday, November 23, 2009
While the first half of Roskilde's season has been far from perfect, defender Jamil Fearrington has reason for optimism at the Danish First Division club as the team heads into their winter break.
Following a summer club-search which took him to trials with Los Angeles and Salt Lake of MLS, Fearrington joined the Copenhagen-area team in mid-August shortly after the start of their season and wasted no time in cementing his place in the team's defense.
"I'm enjoying my time with the team and personally it's been a good half-season," he admitted, continuing "I've been playing regularly in (mostly) the same position and I've managed to put in some praisable performances."
After several years of jumping between clubs in his native Denmark and Norway, the versatile 23 year-old has been able to find a degree of stability in Roskilde, becoming a central figure in the team's defense and anchoring the back line since shortly after his arrival.
"The first 3 games I was playing right fullback, but since then I've played every game in the center defense," he explains. "I feel natural in both positions, so it doesn't make that big of a difference to me."
His solid contributions in what has been a largely difficult first 15 games for the team has not gone unnoticed by club management, as they are currently working on extending his current contract, which is set to expire at the end of 2009.
"We've talked about a long term contract and I think that is what will happen," the former FC Copenhagen player explains.. "What's important to me is some stability in my career."
"I was forced to leave my last three clubs due to the clubs' financial problems and four clubs in two years was not the best thing for my development," he continues. "So whatever happens, I'm not signing a short contract or making any hasty moves."
In addition to giving him a stable club situation for the first time since his two spells at nearby club KB during 2004-2007, Fearrington's permanent addition to the back line would go towards maintaining a degree of roster consistency otherwise lacking throughout the season thanks to a spate of injuries which has too often left them badly shorthanded come game-time.
"Unfortunately the team as a whole hasn't been doing too well, but there are many reasons for that. We've had ridiculously many freak injuries and diseases that have forced the lineup to change every single week."
This factor has taken its toll on the team's standing, as they have only mustered three wins in their first 15 games, and been unable to maintain any momentum even after their handful of impressive performances.
"You could say it's representative of how we've performed, but no way near representative of the team's actual strength," he assesses of their troubles. Most notable are the health problems of their two marquee signings for the midfield, Morten Avnskjold and Stefan Schmidt, both of whom have been unable to contribute their years of Superliga experience to the team for large periods of time.
"Two weeks after joining the club Morten Avnskjold broke his shin, dislocated his foot and ripped everything in his ankle. He wont be back until next season."
"Stefan Schmidt has been out for a month with a weird sickness that the doctors couldn't figure out. He just came back, but isn't fully fit."
Beyond the unavailability of this pair of veterans, the weekly wear and tear on the lineup from top to bottom has been a constant fight.
"In our 4-0 loss against Lyngby we only had 13 players available out of a 25-man squad, due to injuries and suspensions," Fearrington explains regarding one of their more lopsided losses of the season, one which he himself was forced to miss through suspension.
Despite the run of disappointing results that has left Roskilde barely on the wrong side of the relegation line at the mid-point, there is no doubt in his mind that the fans can expect a turnaround in the spring once they have had four months to recover their health and find their footing
"I think you'll see much better results from us in the second half of this season," he concludes, adding "I'm certain of it."