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Tuesday, January 31, 2006

QPR 2 Leicester 3 - Holloway's Post Match View


Ian Holloway has labelled the defeat to Leicester City as 'totally unacceptable.'"It' s hard to express just how dissapointed I am. Tonight was totally unacceptable. There were some individual performances that were unacceptable.
"The back line were shocking. I stuck with them after Luton and have they have done well for me, but that was awful. I've never seen so many errors in all my life. I've made one or two acquistions, I'll work with them and think about changing it about because that was unacceptable.''
Holloway had seen his Rangers side take the lead through Gareth Ainsworth with just five minutes on the clock, but a quick response from Matty Fryatt five minutes later levelled the scores.Richard Stearman's 79th minute strike gave Leicester the lead for the first time in the game, but despite Dan Shitttu's header nine minutes from time, it was Leicester who went home with the three points.As the clock ticked down, Leicester struck again through Stephen Hughes to kill any chance Rangers may have had of stealing the three points."I think our expectations need looking at. We need to take a right good look at ourselves. What investment have we had? What have we spent? How many injuries have we got. Gallen, Bircham, Rowlands, they're all quality players and I think we need to get real.
"I don't make excuses for my team, but tonight was unacceptable. That's the worst I've seen a lot of my players play for this club. It was a terrible night.''

Some Historic Games vs Leicester at Loftus Road

Some momentous QPR vs Leicester Games
Almost Forty years ago, our first? Meeting with Leicester
October 25nd 1966, at Loftus Road: League Cup 4th Round, 3rd Division QPR vs 1st Division Leicester. QPR won 4-2 with two goals from the father of Clive and Bradley Allen (Les Allen!)...Roger Morgan and Mark Lazarus.
QPR Team that night
P Springett
Hazell Hunt Sibley Langley
Keen Sanderson
R Morgan Allen Marsh Lazarus

August 10, 1968 - Our very first game in the First Division
(The new stand not yet completed)....QPR Drew 1-1. Les Allen again! Allan Clarke, Leicester's record (English record) 150,000 pound signing from Fulham makin his debut (And at the end of the season, both teams went down. QPR with 18. Leicester as defeated FA Cup Finalists)
Ron Springett
Finch Hazell Watson Harris
Ian Morgan - Keen - Sibley - Roger Morgan
Clarke Wilks
Sub: Les Allen

Various other major games over the years.
In March 1974, QPR played Leicester in the FA Cup, Quarter Final at Loftus Road, pretty confident of getting to our first FA Cup Semi Final. (This was under Jago, with Bowles, Thomas Francis, etc.). Leicester has a youth player, making his debut. After QPR had a good game, Leicester's debutant midfielder, Joe Waters, scored twice and QPR wnet out 0-2.

Monday, January 30, 2006

Not a Single QPR Player in Taylor's 33-Man U-21 Football League Squad to Play Italian League

Best QPR can do: is we have a couple of ex-loanies in the squad (Camp & Davies)

BBC -Taylor reveals U-21 league squad

Taylor will reduce his 33-man squad to 16 ahead of the gamePeter Taylor, manager of the Football League under-21 team, has announced a 33-man squad for the forthcoming match against the Italian League. Taylor, also boss of Hull City who host the game on 21 February, said he was looking forward to an exciting game. "It'll be a great opportunity for the players involved to come and play at a terrific stadium," said Taylor.
The fixture is the 13th of its kind, since the two Leagues first met in November 1960 in Milan.

The Football League Under-21 Squad:
Goalkeepers:Lee Camp (Derby County)Scott Flinders (Barnsley)Ross Turnbull (Crewe)Jamie Young (Rushden & Diamonds)

Defenders:Gary Borrowdale (Crystal Palace)Luke Chambers (Northampton)Andrew Davies (Derby County)Simon Francis (Tranmere Rovers)Andy Holdsworth (Huddersfield Town)Dean Lewington (MK Dons)Matthew Mills (Southampton)Wes Morgan (Nottingham Forest)Richard Stearman (Leicester City)Kelvin Wilson (Notts County)Scott Wiseman (Hull City)

Midfielders:Chris Eagles (Watford)Billy Jones (Crewe)Anthony McNamee (Watford)James Perch (Nottingham Forest)Ryan Smith (Leicester City)Tom Soares (Crystal Palace)Simon Walton (Leeds)Ben Watson (Crystal Palace)John Welsh (Hull City)Simon Whaley (Preston)

Forwards:Dexter Blackstock (Southampton)Matt Fryatt (Leicester City)Cameron Jerome (Cardiff)Leroy Lita (Reading)Izale McLeod (MK Dons)Billy Paynter (Hull City)David Nugent (Preston)

Recent News: QPR Sign Youssouf and are trying to sign Thompson

As obviously everyone knows, with the Transfer deadline tomorrow, QPR have signed on a six month contract, 29 year old Danish forward Sammy Youssouf http://www.sportinglife.com/football/cc_championship/news/story_get.cgi?STORY_NAME=nonwire_soccer/06/01/28/manual_143308.html&TEAMHD=nationwide1

. QPR are trying to sign Linfield's Irish Forward, Peter Thompson and are in talks with the club: http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/irish/4658516.stm
BBC - Linfield continue Thompson talks
Linfield turned down a bid from Gretna for Thompson earlier this monthLinfield have turned down an offer from Queen's Park Rangers for Peter Thompson but talks are set to continue until the transfer deadline closes on Tuesday.
Members of the board met at Windsor Park for half an hour on Saturday.
Although the club did not reveal exact details of the bid, BBC Sport understands that an initial down payment of £50,000 was proposed.
A further £50,000 would be paid at the end of the season, plus other clauses, including £100,000 if QPR are promoted.
Loftus Road boss Ian Holloway watched Thompson in Tuesday night's 1-0 Co Antrim Shield win over Glentoran.
After watching the match, Holloway told BBC Sport that Thompson looked "a very good player".
"The lad was neat and tidy and worked his socks off.
"Now I've got to think about the state of my club and whether we've got the finance and what we can do," he said last week.
Barnsley manager Andy Ritchie also travelled to Belfast to watch Thompson in Tuesday's game.
Linfield boss David Jeffrey has insisted that he will not allow the player to go on trial with any club.
"If anybody wants him, they can make up their minds by watching him out on the pitch," said Jeffrey.
However, the Blues boss Jeffrey has said that the club will not stand in the way of any player who wants to move to full-time football.
Linfield turned down a bid from Scottish Division Two club Gretna for Thompson earlier this month.
Thompson's goalscoring exploits have attracted the attention of several clubs in Scotland and England, although Gretna have been the only club to make an official bid.
In November, the 21-year-old postman from east Belfast was called up by Northern Ireland manager Lawrie Sanchez, making his international debut in the friendly against Portugal.

Steve Yates Turned 36

And Steve Yates celebrated his 36th birthday yesterday....still playing: A few days ago, joined Halifax.

Steve Yates - Born January 29, 1970

Crouch Hits the Quarter Century Mark

Ex-QPR's Peter Crouch Turns 25....Born January 30, 1981.

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Lomas Calls for Patience While he Gets Match Fit

Evening Standard, January 23
"Lomas Calls for Patience"

Steve Lomas: "It is going to take three or four more games before I am back to my old self. It takes a while to get back up to speed. You can get through on adrenaline for a while but then your lack of fitness kicks in. After three months out, it is hard to go charging around."

Nick Blackburn, Bungs & Buying a Goalie

'Immediate action' needed to kill off bung culture
By Mihir Bose - Telegraph, January 26, 2006

"....The problem for the bung buster is that so much of the relationship between the manager and the agent is so opaque. Nick Blackburn, the former chairman of Queens Park Rangers, tells of his club buying a goalkeeper who did not come up to expectations. They had to pay fees of £50,000 as the agent claimed he had to cover the expenses incurred in relation to the player. It then turned out that the former QPR manager had been told of a scouting report saying the goalkeeper leaked goals.
Blackburn, who met the FA bung busters yesterday to back up the bungs story told by Ian Holloway, the current QPR manager, also told them the goalkeeper's story including the names of the manager and agent involved.
We cannot print them for legal reasons."

'Immediate action' needed to kill off bung culture
By Mihir Bose - Telegraph, January 26, 2006

The former chief executive of the Premier League, Peter Leaver QC, has told The Daily Telegraph that to remove the bung culture the Premier League should bring in rules which will make it impossible for bungs to be paid during transfers.

"....Leaver said: "I don't see much point in looking into the past. The inquiry will get a lot of stories. I would be surprised if they get any evidence. My advice is that the QC or whoever is appointed to head it should immediately draft rules which make it very difficult to cheat."

Leaver recommends that every club have a nominated director who should be the only person to handle transfers and talk to agents. This will cut out what is now considered the most common way bungs take place during a transfer.

Bungs have changed greatly since the first inquiry, which examined 12 transfers, hearing lots of evidence about cash being paid as a result of transfer deals. Ronnie Fenton, then Brian Clough's assistant at Nottingham Forest, featured prominently and in one case the inquiry was told he had collected £45,000 in a fishing box off a trawler in Hull over the transfer of Thorvaldur Orlygsson to Forest.

Now the bungs culture is more sophisticated, cash is not so evident and the money trail often goes through foreign bank accounts. The manager talks to an agent about a player and they agree the deal including the agent's fee, with the agent agreeing to pay some of it back to the manager.

Leaver added: "In such a case it is very difficult to trace a payment, but if you have a nominated director then when the agents suggest a price they can accept or reject.

"The Premier League should also have rules that every employee can have his bank account examined to make sure money is not siphoned off. And only agents approved by the Premier League and who allow access to their books and records can do business with clubs. They should put in place rules which make it very difficult to cheat and serious sanctions if they are caught."

Graham Bean, who for four years was the Football Association's bung buster, agrees that it is very difficult to catch a cheat. "In all the investigations you feel something is not quite right but you couldn't say it is wrong, you have a sixth sense,'' he said.

Bean is well aware that successful bung investigations require speedy work. Doug Ellis, the chairman of Aston Villa, worried by certain transfers during the managership of John Gregory, employed Kroll, the security experts, to trawl through bank accounts and presented the evidence to the FA.

However, Bean senses there may be a new mood, particularly in the Premier League, to sort things out. "They are fed up with rumours and innuendos. They are going to kill it or cure it."

The problem for the bung buster is that so much of the relationship between the manager and the agent is so opaque. Nick Blackburn, the former chairman of Queens Park Rangers, tells of his club buying a goalkeeper who did not come up to expectations. They had to pay fees of £50,000 as the agent claimed he had to cover the expenses incurred in relation to the player. It then turned out that the former QPR manager had been told of a scouting report saying the goalkeeper leaked goals.
Blackburn, who met the FA bung busters yesterday to back up the bungs story told by Ian Holloway, the current QPR manager, also told them the goalkeeper's story including the names of the manager and agent involved.
We cannot print them for legal reasons.


Ex-QPR's Martin Allen Profiled

Telegraph - January 26, 2006

Allen's motivational powers vital for Cup

By Simon Goodley

It is last Saturday evening at Heathrow Airport's Terminal Three and the check-in clerk is just informing her passengers that their flight to Abu Dhabi has been cancelled. What bad luck for her. One of the passengers is Brentford manager Martin Allen and, as anybody who has watched him address referees from the technical area knows, he is no diplomat.

"I had 16 players with me and I informed her that we were Brentford Football Club and then told her in no uncertain terms that she better get us out there as soon as possible," Allen recalled. "Within 15 minutes new tickets had arrived."

And so Allen's latest FA Cup motivational session ahead of Saturday's fourth- round clash at home to Premiership strugglers Sunderland had begun, albeit in considerably more comfort than in the same round last year. Then, rather than a Middle East break, the eccentric Brentford manager swam across the freezing river adjoining the hotel where his team stayed prior to the replay against Hartlepool, principally to teach his players "to stop talking and go out and do it".

"It was warmer diving into the pool in Abu Dhabi," said Allen. Despite his excellent start in football management Allen doesn't take himself too seriously, which explains why he is seen as an outspoken but also popular figure.

At Oldham in December, he was given Christmas presents by the home fans ("I got some socks and some chocolates. It's better than getting abuse, isn't it?"), while at Stockport in the first round he was applauded to the dug-out, chiefly because he had written an unsolicited letter to the Cheshire club last season congratulating them on their support.

On the flip side there are others with whom he might not exchange festive gifts. He has been known to clash with match officials, while even his own board receive the odd mouthful. "Last year, before we played at Southampton in the fifth round, one of our directors said it was our Cup final. That was an insult to our players."

The make-up of the board is changing now after last week's takeover of the club by the Supporters' Trust and the installation as chairman of former BBC director-general, Greg Dyke.

"Only time will tell what will happen but there are big debts at this club," the manager continued. "This club need sponsorship and revenue. They could now go to a new level with the new chairman." That unflagging belief, along with brutal honesty and a decent sense of humour, are the characteristics that mark Allen out. "I don't think it will be a giant-killing [if Brentford win on Saturday]," he insisted. "Of course we are underdogs. A lot of their players came from this level, but nobody can forget they won the Championship with those players."

"I know of him [Mick McCarthy] and I see what he's made of," he continued. "You can tell he is a quality bloke, but I'm certainly not going to talk to him after the game. I can't see the point with that. I think that's a bit hypocritical."

The Sunderland manager is big enough to recover from such brusque treatment. Let's hope the check-in girl is too.


Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Ex-QPR Leroy Rosenoir Leaves Torquay

[Remember Jim Smith signing him...and then a year later he left when Dean Coney and Paul Parker joined from Fulham]

BBC - Boss Rosenior leaves Torquay job
Leroy Rosenior has failed to stem the decline at PlainmoorTorquay manager Leroy Rosenior has left by mutual consent after three and a half years in charge at Plainmoor.
The Gulls slipped into the League Two relegation places after a 2-1 defeat at home to Rochdale on Tuesday.
Chairman Mike Bateson told the club's website: "We have decided that a parting of the ways is in the best interests of both parties."
"It's disappointing that it has had to end because Leroy and I had a great working relationship."
The Gulls have found it difficult to adjust to live back in the Football League basement after being relegated last season on goal difference.
Rosenior had led them to promotion the previous campaign
But, despite reaching the third round of the FA Cup and taking Premiership Birmingham to a replay, they have managed only three home wins this season and Bateson said it was time for action.
He said: "Leroy has been with us for three and a half years and we have had some tremendous highs.
"We have also seen a standard of football that has surprised us all.
"I thank him for his efforts and wish him all the best of luck for the future."
No announcement has been made regarding Rosenior's successor.

Former England Captain Gerry Francis on Eriksson's Replacement

Independent - January 25, 2006
Look to home-grown talent': Six leading figures on who should replace Eriksson ...

GERRY FRANCIS (former England captain)
I think every nation should be managed by someone who comes from that country, like the players have to, and it would be nice if England were managed by an Englishman. But there is no such rule so England should go for the best man. However, no one name springs out at you, which is not to say Sam Allardyce, Alan Curbishley, Steve McClaren or Paul Jewell might not do a fantastic job. I think whoever gets it needs enough experience to show they can manage.

Chelesea Reserves Beat QPR REserves 1-0 .. Doherty & Kus Played

Chelsea Reserves 1 QPR 0
"........Marcin Kus started at right back and the Polish player impressed the Reserve Team Manager. [Garry Waddock] "He trained yesterday with me and he come in today and looked a very good player. Hopefully there will be a good future for him at the club. He is like a Rolls-Royce in terms of his running, he gets up and down well and is very good on the ball."
Doherty back in action after a long lay-off
Tommy Doherty made his comeback after limping off at Home Park back in November. "For an hour he did very well, but then faded which was to be expected. He'll probably need a few more games until he is back to full match fitness."
[Team] Thomas, Kus, Trialist (Munday), Evatt, Hislop (Howell), Donnelly, Bailey, Doherty, Townsend (Yelland), Moore, Trialist (Jones). http://www.qpr.premiumtv.co.uk/page/News/NewsDetail/0,,10373~773325,00.html?

Furlong on the Season, his Playing & His Fitness

Furs' Fire Still Burning
Ben Kosky - Kilburn Times (and other local papers)
25 January 2006
"...Paul Furlong insists his passion for playing remains undimmed ....Rangers have collected just one point from the six games he has missed. ..., he told the Times: "I won't be treating Leicester any differently just because I got sent off against them earlier in the season."Of course it'd be very nice to get a goal and that's what I go into every game aiming for. I'd like to have scored more and last season they were coming a bit easier."
Looking back on the incidents where I got sent off, they were foolish at the time. Not only did I hurt myself, but I hurt the team and perhaps the club as well."But, whenever a negative comes around I try to bring a positive out of it and the only thing I can say is this: it just goes to show the fire's still burning for me."I still want to put my foot in where it needs to be put in and try to be courageous. If I wasn't that way inclined, it'd perhaps seem like I was coming towards the end."
It shows both myself and other people that I'm still up for it. I'm feeling good and I'm not just here to make up the numbers.".....
Despite pre-season fears that the striker might be prone to lengthy injury absences, he has not missed a single Rangers game through lack of fitness all season." In my last couple of years at Birmingham I had all manner of injuries and hopefully those are out of the way now. As soon as you're training and playing regularly, you build up a base of fitness and, touch wood, I've not been injured for some time," Furlong added."It's been an up and down season, but I've always said that if everyone's fit and the gaffer's got his pick, we can do well in this league."I'm pleased with the way I'm playing and the most encouraging thing for me is that I'm still getting chances each game I play."At the moment the goalkeeper's saving them, or they're going wide, but eventually they will go in.
"Tommy Doherty could be back in the QPR line-up for the first time since mid-November after coming through this week's reserve team friendly against Chelsea with no ill effects.Doherty has been out of action with a shin problem, but is likely to make his comeback against the Foxes, while fellow midfielder Martin Rowlands should also return to the squad.Loan signing Marcin Kus is also in line to make his first team debut after he was also given a run-out in the Chelsea friendly. http://www.wktimes.co.uk/content/brent/wembleychronicle/sport/story.aspx?brand=KLBTOnline&category=sportfootball&tBrand=northlondon24&tCategory=sportwkc&itemid=WeED24%20Jan%202006%2019%3A53%3A37%3A723

Agents Debate

Debate "Does football need a new way of regulating agents?
The Guardian Wednesday January 25, 2006The Guardian

Yes - Jon Smith; Chief executive, First Artist Corp management group
I don't think football is dirtier than any other business, it's just that its deals are carried out in the full glare of the media spotlight. As such men like Mike Newell can't just cast aspersions, they need to come up with some real facts. Ian Holloway talks about men turning up at his house with wheelbarrows full of cash but I just don't believe him.
Having said that, the Football Association's new regulations concerning agents as they exist at the moment simply don't work. For example, they bar club employees or officials holding stakes in football agencies. Well my company is publicly listed, so I can't stop people investing in it - and I'm not sure the Financial Services Authority would approve if I did.
Also the regulations state you can't represent more than one side of any negotiation, but First Artist are a successful global business and we acquire other companies around the world. Indeed, last year there was a deal in which we represented a buying club, an Italian subsidiary represented the selling club and a Spanish subsidiary acted for the player. I don't see any problem with that but the deals do need to be transparent.
The problematic situation now is that only one official representative needs to sign the FA forms on any transaction. Yet there can be any number of people actually involved. For instance, in South America a struggling club may sell shares in a player's registration to as many investors as it likes. When that player is sold those people and their representatives are all involved in the deal, and that is the time where a deal can go seriously wrong. Everyone involved in any transaction, agents - licensed or unlicensed (why these people are even involved in the first place, I don't know) - lawyers, financial advisors, all need to put their name on the dotted line.
Then there is the question of proper policing. The FA is just not set up to do this properly. I like the chief executive Brian Barwick a great deal, and it's good to see a real football man at the top of that organisation, but the FA is currently too "civil service". I believe the Professional Footballers' Association, the players' union, should police the deals as they do in America in the NBA, NHL and NFL.
They would have proper teeth: if someone steps out of line then the players, who after all are the absolute heartbeat of the game, will never cross their own union because if anything goes wrong they will get no protection. This idea isn't going to be popular with the PFA, because they want to remain agents themselves, but for the good of the game they are best placed to do it.
The world governing body, Fifa, is fully aware that its regulations need to be redrafted too. I had lunch at Fifa House last week and they realise the current rules are six years old, having been drafted in 2000, and need to be reviewed. When Fifa redrafts these regulations in the coming year, I believe that not only all football associations should be involved, but that the players' unions and agents themselves should submit to this process too. Then, for once, we will have one voice that speaks across all factions of the sport.
Jon Smith is a member of the new Football Agents' Association

No - Eric Hall; Football and music agent
When it comes to transfer dealings, I believe football is as transparent now as it's ever been - and I've been in the game more than a few years. So no, I don't think there's any need to increase the amount of regulation in the game. A deal is a deal; you are already required to fill in the forms and send all the transfer details to the FA's payments office - showing exactly who's paid what to whom for whom - so how much more can be done to improve the situation?
To tell you the truth, I was shocked when I heard what Mike Newell had said about managers being offered bribes. Reason being, I was at Luton the day before the news came out, doing a deal on the club's behalf to bring the young midfielder David Bell in from Rushden and Diamonds. I got to Luton early that evening and had a long chat with Mike in his office; there wasn't a mention of his allegations. Then when I turned on Sky Sports News the next morning, he was all over the television saying bungs were rife in football. I was amazed.
The fact is I've never been offered a bung - terrible word, that. In football and in music (I started out as an office boy in a record company) I've never asked for, been offered or given a backhander, and god's truth I don't know anyone who has. I work hard for my money - too hard. The sort of East End lad I am, if it was going on then you'd think I'd be just the sort of guy to be taking them - but no way, never on my life. Sure I want to make money - but my job is to make as much as possible for my client, whether it's a football club, a player or a manager, without breaking the law of the land.
A while back there were some unfounded stories about one of my clients, Terry Venables. Was anything ever proven? Of course not. I said at the time, and I was quite pleased with the quote, "The football authorities are looking for a needle in a haystack when there isn't even a needle."
The game is transparent enough; why should I disclose every last detail of what I'm doing? Every last bit of money I've earned has been through working my balls off, not by taking bungs or doing double deals.
I do, though, think it's disgraceful if agents are copping money on both sides of a deal. I've never done it and it's rightly frowned upon - unless, that is, all parties are aware and agreeable. Recently a new band that I represent asked the little production company I own to take them on, and I said not unless it's cleared by the record company and all parties. So I think it's right that the football authorities are trying to tighten up against double-dealing - if it's happening and the parties involved don't know, it's out of order.
But in all my years in showbiz and football, I've never come across a dodgy deal like Mike, Ian Holloway and Sven-Goran Eriksson have been talking about. They really shouldn't say these things if they're not going to take the next step and actually name names.
But of course, there's no evidence at all. What they've done is opened up a can of worms, only there aren't any worms inside.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Ex-QPR News: Cochrane Set to Leave Crewe...Griffiths Signs & Scores For Aldershot...Yates signs for Halifax

Crewe Official Site -
Cochrane requests move
Justin Cochrane's three-year stay at Crewe Alexandra could be drawing to a close after the 23-year-old midfielder requested a move away from Gresty Road.
Alex boss Dario Gradi confirmed today that he has circulated Cochrane's name for transfer or loan after the Hackney born player asked to pursue a first team opportunity elsewhere having failed to secure a regular starting spot with the Railwaymen.
Cochrane, signed for an undisclosed fee from non-league Hayes FC in the summer of 2003, made an instant impression in the Alex side and proved to be influential in his first season at Gresty Road, immediately becoming a favourite of the Alex faithful.
However he has struggled to win a regular starting spot over the past two seasons.
"He asked if he could go and I don't think he is going to get into my team." Dario told Crewe Alex World today
"It's difficult to break into that midfield and then we have the likes of Lee Bell, Tony Grant and Michael O'Connor who are all probably ahead of him.
"I think Justin's best game for us was his first game in the friendly against Everton. He hasn't quite managed to reproduce that form since and I can't afford to put him in the team to see if he can reproduce it,
"So perhaps it's time for Justin to go and see if he can reproduce that form at another club.
"I know the fans like him and I am not biased against him in any way. He is a super lad, a model professional and a model player."

BBC - LeRoy Griffiths Joins Aldershot
Aldershot Town have signed strikers Leroy Griffiths and Kirk Hudson.
Ex-QPR man Griffiths, 29, joins on loan from Ryman Premier side Fisher Athletic until the end of the season.
Griffiths has also played for Farnborough, Margate and Grays, while Hudson spent time in the youth ranks at both Celtic and Ipswich.
He joined Bournemouth on a short-term deal in the summer, but was released in October after making two substitute appearances for the Cherries.

BBC - Leroy Griffiths Scores Twice vs Halifax
Aldershot 3-1 Halifax Aldershot came from a goal behind to dent Halifax's promotion hopes with a deserved home win.
Lewis Killeen seemingly set Halifax on their way with a goal from the edge of the penalty area in the 16th minute.
But Shots responded quickly when Gary Holloway smashed the equaliser five minutes later.
Leroy Griffiths then put the home side ahead on the stroke of half time before stabbing home a second from close range in the 73rd minute.
Aldershot: Bull, Somner, Brough, Heald, Hamilton, Crittenden, Williams (Sulaiman 74), Holloway, Scott, Griffiths (Hudson 80), Sills. Subs Not Used: Weait, Winfield, Mustafa.
Booked: Brough, Heald.
Goals: Holloway 22, Griffiths 45, 73.
Halifax: Legzdins, Haslam, Young, Quinn, Doughty, Killeen, Foster, Thompson (Bowler 71), Jacobs (Bushell 53), Forrest, Senior. Subs Not Used: Midgley, Toulson, Grant
Booked: Foster http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/eng_conf/4612262.stm

BBC - Veteran Yates makes Halifax move
Halifax Town have signed experienced defender Steve Yates on a contract until the end of the season, reports BBC Radio Leeds. The 35-year-old goes straight into Town's squad for Tuesday's Conference game at Burton Albion. Yates helped Huddersfield to promotion in 2004, before deciding to retire at the end of the 2004/05 season. However, he has returned to football and made one appearance for Scarborough earlier this month. Yates has also played for Tranmere, QPR and Bristol Rovers.

Thirty Years Ago Today...QPR's Last Defeat on Our March to the First Division Championship!

January 24, 1976: West Ham Defeated QPR 1-0 After that West Ham defeat, QPR went undefeated for the rest of the season. (OK maybe there was THAT heartbreaking, soul-destroying, Championship-losing defeat at Norwich. But apart from Norwich game....From January 24, 1976 to April 24, 1976 QPR's record was: 13 Wins...1 Draw...and the 2-3 Norwich defeat on April 17, 1976)

QPR's Team for the West Ham Game: NO Bowles...No Francis

Clement Webb McLintock Gillard
Beck Masson Hollins
Thomas Givens Leach
Sub Nutt (on for McLintock)

Miller and Bean Join Brown and Presumably soon Sturridge & Ukah in Leaving QPR


So with Adam Miller and Marcus Bean joining Aaron Brown and presumably soon Dean Sturridge and Ugo Ukah, the squad looks a little smaller.
[When you add to the players who left at the end of last season: Chris Day, Tony Thorpe, Jamie Cureton, Richard Edghill and Generoso Rossi, the continual evolution of this soccer club continues.] (Not to mention the off-the-field QPR departures since the beginning of the season, from the Chairman to the Chief Executive Officer to the Chief Financial Officer....)

QPR Official Site - Adam Miller
Rangers midfielder Adam Mille has joined Nationwide Conference promotion-hopefuls Stevenage Borough. The 23-year-old, who has made just a solitary first team league appearance this season,....There is no initial fee involved, but a sell-on clause has been agreed between the two clubs... http://www.qpr.premiumtv.co.uk/page/News/NewsDetail/0,,10373~772659,00.html

Stevenage Official Site
Stevenage Borough have secured the signature of 23 year old Adam Miller ...on an 18 month contract.... featured in most of the 04/05 season Championship games after starring for Aldershot.
After hearing he was available, Boro boss Graham Westley was determined to win his signature before the transfer window closed, amid interest from Oxford, Colchester and Leyton Orient, as well as several Conference clubs.

QPR Official Site - Marcus Bean
Marcus Bean has completed his move to Blackpool on a free transfer....
Although Marcus Bean's move is a free transfer there is a sell on clause so that the Superhoops will get a percentage of any future transfer fee.

The Seasiders completed the signing of Queen's Park Rangers midfielder MARCUS BEAN late on Friday afternoon....
Bean has been at Loftus Road since the age of ten and has progressed through ranks to make his senior debut at the age of seventeen, but it will be one he will want to forget as he suffered the ignominy of being sent off in a game that saw four players receive the red card.
Bean's energetic style of play and ability to break up play saw the Hammersmith born man pick up QPR's Young Player of the Season last term, but the lack of first team action this season saw Marcus take up a loan spell at Swansea City where he made nine appearances. On his return to Loftus Road Bean played a part in six games, his last being in the R's 1-0 Boxing Day defeat at Brighton. Following discussions with Rangers manager Ian Holloway, Marcus decided to seek regular first team football elsewhere and jumped at the chance to join the Seasiders.

Monday, January 23, 2006

Holloway - FA Not Interested in His Bung/Agents Ideas

IAN HOLLOWAY has launched a furious attack on the FA and claims they don't give "a flying hoot" whether he was offered a backhander or not. "....
He said: "I can't tell the FA or FIFA what to do because I'm only a little bloke from Bristol.
"I really don't think the FA give a flying hoot what I think. "They won't say 'Oh Ian Holloway's come up with a good idea, that's how we can solve that problem'. "Do you think they will listen to a little bloke like me? "I should be sitting in the FA's offices smoking a big cigar because I would make it illegal for any club to pay a player's agent.
"The contract would be between the player and the agent. If that was set in stone, no-one could cheat.
"If I told them how to change the rules, they wouldn't listen to me. They'd be more likely to say 'shut up you Bristol muppet.'
"I've wanted to talk to them about why my players might be charged for a problem at Stoke earlier in the season, and I can't get a call from them.
"Then the minute the press starts digging, they want to speak to me."
There has never been any suggestion of wrong-doing on Holloway's part. And the fact that his match-day suit was bought from Oxfam for £17.50 suggests that, despite the cash flying around the game, he isn't seeing much of it.
Luton boss Newell admits he feared at first that his revelations might have implications for the rest of his career.
"But the reaction I've had since from fans and from clubs, like at Wolves last week, has changed my mind," he said. "I am concerned at the amounts of money clubs like us are having to pay for nothing. "If an agent brings a player to you that you've never seen before in your life, and he's good, then I agree with paying the agent. But the players we have are ones we've gone out and looked at every night. Then the agent has turned up, asking for more for the player, and then getting his lump sum. It doesn't make sense.
"Players should pay their agents. Players, no-one else."

BBC - Holloway cynical about FA action

Bristol City's Bid for Bournemouth's James Hayter

Bristol City Official Site

Steve Lansdown has rejected claims City made two "wholly inadequate" offers for Bournemouth top scorer James Hayter.
The chairman confirmed to bcfc.co.uk that City have made moves for the 14-goal striker, but says the offer made are "very good" for a player who is out of contract in the summer.
Steve told bcfc.co.uk: "We have spoken to Bournemouth and have made a good offer.
Chairman says "bid is good"
"You've got to remember James Hayter's name was circulated, along with Brian Stock, who has since gone to Preston North End.
"We know Huddersfield bid for him, we know what that bid was and we know our offer was in excess of that.
"We feel our offer, which has been rejected, is a very good one for somebody who is out of contract at the end of the season.
"We'll continue to speak to Bournemouth, going back and forwards with them before hopefully agreeing on a figure."
But the chairman warned: "The figure Bournemouth have given to me is well in excess of our bid, so we are some way apart at the moment."
Cherries chairman Peter Phillips has already rejected a £100,000 bid for Hayter from Huddersfield and has now labelled City's offer "wholly unacceptable".

Links re Hayter on Bristol City's Official Site!
James Hayter - Player profile of the 14-goal Bournemouth top scorer from the Cherries' website
Breaking News - Bournemouth chairman Peter Phillip labels City's bids "wholly unacceptable"
Transfer Window - An exclusive guide to all the January transfers in Coca-Cola League One


Others on Corruptions in Football

The Times - Simon Barnes
'Sheikh' reveals real problems

". ..... The issue is not Eriksson, the issue is corruption. .... What is surprising is not that the corruption exists but that people are beginning to talk about corruption. And this brings a growing public sense of dismay. If we must have our attention drawn to such matters, then we would like to see something done. And that — most emphatically — does not mean an FA committee of inquiry, to be launched some time in the future, headed by some nice old boy with a brief to come up with three tenths of bugger all. Nor does it mean a committee to look into Eriksson’s gossip and how much he can substantiate it. He can’t substantiate it at all. He is just accustomed to working in a corrupt business, a business in which backhanders are the way the world wags. Everybody’s doing it, so I’d be a fool not to. I don’t want to be ostracised. I want to be part of football, therefore I have to be part of corruption.
Ian Holloway, the Queens Park Rangers manager, is wriggling like an eel in his attempt to distance himself from the whistleblower tag, but all the same he had it all perfectly when he said that he loved the game, hated the business....
..... The point is that corruption is at the heart of football and in the sudden, unexpected outbreak of bung-awareness, it is time to begin the war, in the knowledge that it will be never-ending. ....Football needs a genuine investigation; it needs genuine enforcement; it needs, above all, a willingness to admit that corruption exists, that it is widespread and that it is destroying the thing it feeds on. Something is rotten in the state of football. Let that be the starting point.

Observer's Crystal Palace's Chairman Simon Jordan
Agents an easy target - a bigger problem is the enemy within

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Marc Devlin: Never Offered - and Never Been Offered - a Bung

[Mark Devlin from last week]

Devlin: No bungs here
This is Swindon Town -13th January 2006

"MARK Devlin is surprised that more players don’t seek free assistance from their own trade union when it comes to sorting out contract and transfer dealings. Town’s deputy chairman has been involved in his fair share of transfer negotiations at both Swindon Town and Queens Park Rangers over the years and insists he has not been exposed to the murky dealings of the type that Luton boss Mike Newell has alluded to.
He said: “I can only talk from personal experience but I have neither offered a bung nor been offered one myself.“Agents are part of football today and it’s something you have to deal with when it comes to signing players, selling players or renegotiating contracts.“I have to say the bit that I find hard to stomach is when a club is asked to pay a fee where you are renegotiating a current player’s contract.”While players are free to negotiate deals themselves, Devlin says there is another route that players can take.
Devlin said: “The players’ union, the PFA, offer a service where one of their officials is happy to act on a player’s behalf. It’s free as I understand.“Clearly though, this is a subject which has been doing the rounds for some time and obviously it’s something we will follow here with interest.”
The Football League agents’ fees report, just released, revealed that Town handed over £5,500 between July and December of last year, compared to £15,250 in the same period in 2004.. http://www.thisisstfc.co.uk/news_headlines_Story.asp?NewsID=5173

Mark Kennedy Profiled and Interviewed

Ex-QPR Loan Hero, Mark Kennedy is profile and interviewed in The Sunday Times. Somehow his QPR experience gets zero mention! Millwall....Liverpool...Wimbledon...Manchester City...Wolves and Ireland...!

Sunday Times January 22, 2006Mark Kennedy: I’m actually a very serious person
"....I had a trial at Millwall, next minute I had a contract, next minute I’m in the first team. Before I know it I was at Liverpool. And playing for Ireland. It happened that quickly.”
He signed for Liverpool in 1995 at the age of 18 for £2.3m, becoming the most expensive teenager in Britain at the time. It was a tag he wore lightly, too lightly at times. .....Kennedy got labelled with the Spice Boy tag, even though he never hung around with that crew. He barely got a run at Liverpool and after three seasons he moved to Wimbledon, then a Premiership side with big plans for moving to Dublin. “Joe (Kinnear) promised me the sun, moon and stars. It was the opposite. ....from a footballing point of view it was without doubt the greatest mistake I’ve made in my life.
“I didn’t get a look-in for three months and I went to Joe and said, ‘I’ve made a big mistake, you’ve made a big mistake, let’s get out of it.’ And, by the grace of God, Man City came in for me.”
Joe Royle was manager at Maine Road but Kevin Keegan came in when City were relegated and Kennedy didn’t figure in his plans. Keegan was planning to play with wing-backs — he couldn’t see Kennedy in that role — and was also trying to cut the squad. “There was a lot of talk about Ipswich coming in for me, they were in Premiership then. My agent rang me and said, ‘Wolves have come in for you.’ I said , ‘If I’m not going to Ipswich, I’ll stay at City.’ And he said, ‘With all due respect, Mark, they’ve agreed a fee for you which kind of says they don’t want you.’ At that moment in time I didn’t want to go, I had two years left on my contract, but I didn’t really have an option.
“Keegan said he had a whole load of players he was trying to get rid of, but couldn’t get offers for. I knew that to be true. As far as I’m concerned he was very honest and admirable about the thing.”
KENNEDY HAS had his fair share of rejection but the only manager he has a bad word for is Brian Kerr.....
For the moment he has other concerns. This is a huge year for him. Kennedy is 30 in May, around the same time as his five-year contract at Wolves ends. He says his days as a “tricky winger” are now behind him but reckons he has a few more years left, even in the Premiership, with Wolves or another side. Wolves’ FA Cup clash with Manchester United next Sunday could be a big factor in his future. Staunton is sure to be watching. Redemption may yet be at hand.

Holloway "Clarifies" re his Comments About Bungs


THE TIMES Luton 2 QPR 0:....Kevin Dunn
MIKE NEWELL last night expressed no regret about raising the issue of payments to agents but preferred to talk instead about a rare victory over Queens Park Rangers. ......
The match, however, was overshadowed by the “bung” affair. But if Newell thought he had a supporter in Ian Holloway, the QPR manager distanced himself from his fellow manager. He said alleged improper payments were “a grain of sand on a beach”, admitting he had spoken to the FA about one incident four years ago involving an agent he described as “old news”.
STAR MAN: Carlos Edwards (Luton)
.... QPR: Royce 6, Bignot 6 (Taylor 83min, 5), Shittu 6, Santos 6, Rose 5, Ainsworth 7 (Moore 79min, 5), Lomas 6, Langley 6, Cook 6, Baidoo 6 (Nygaard h-t, 6), Furlong 5

Telegraph - January 22, 2006 - Simon Hart
Holloway fury at bung-buster label
Luton manager Mike Newell turned up at Kenilworth Road believing he had a new ally in the battle against greedy football agents. Unfortunately for Newell, his Queens Park Rangers counterpart, Ian Holloway, is not best pleased to have been dragged into stories of corruption in the game.
Last week it was reported that Holloway had become the first manager to step forward to back up Newell's claims that too many agents are taking money out of the game. Not so, insists Holloway.
After watching his side slide to a 2-0 defeat, he struggled to contain his anger at the way comments had been attributed to him relating to a four-year-old story that he had not discussed with anyone. The suggestion that he had been offered a £30,000 sweetener by an agent had in fact originated in a book written by the former QPR chairman, Nick Blackburn.
Newell, who has made no secret of his discomfort at being thrust into the spotlight in the past week since he went public with his claims, clearly believed he had found a fellow whistle-blower to share the heat.
Before the game, he made a point of striding out of his dugout and on to the pitch to shake Holloway's outstretched hand.
And, at his post-match press conference, he revealed how he had spoken to the QPR manager before the kick-off to thank him for his support.
"I appreciate that someone else has come and backed me up," said a grateful Newell. "It's been a long time coming. To be fair to Ian, when you look at his comments when it first came out, he said that he loved the game but hated the business, so he was one of the first ones who stood up immediately."
Holloway admitted that he had expressed sympathy for Newell in a Radio Five interview, but made it plain that was as far as it went. As for suggestions that he believed the game was rife with corruption and bungs, that was a total misrepresentation of his views. His own experience related to an agent negotiating a free transfer who suddenly moved the goalposts and demanded a fee. It was, he said, nothing but a "grain of sand in a whole beach".
Following last week's reports, Holloway was contacted by the Football Association on Friday and explained how the story had originated and what had happened. That, he believes, will be the end of his involvement.
Newell also hopes his involvement is over. Last night, before Holloway made his remarks, he said he hoped that he could get back to his day job of managing a football club.
In his programme notes he wrote: "It was never my intention to make headlines. It was a build-up and culmination of three and a half years of frustration dealing with agents.
"Every group is split on the subject apart from one, the supporters. I have had letters and e-mails from all over the country, fans from virtually every club and every division.
I am grateful for every one and it is nice to know what they are thinking and that they share the same concerns.
"Those with nothing to worry about, don't worry. Having met with the FA and dealt with professional people, I don't think it is the lost cause that some people have suggested."
Unfortunately for Newell, Holloway's decision to distance him from the FA's investigation means the Luton manager will be forced to endure more attention in the coming days, though he did at least have the consolation of scoring a victory on the pitch. His side maintained their push for a play-off place with goals from Markus Heikkinen and Steve Howard in a one-sided encounter

BBC - QPR boss Ian Holloway:"I like Mike Newell but not today because he beat me. He's an honest man and can only talk about his experiences. "I support Ian Holloway, I work for QPR and support QPR. "I'm bitterly disappointed. We did lots of things right but the ball in the net and that's what gets results." http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport2/hi/football/eng_div_1/4612332.stm

INDEPENDENT - January 22, 2006
Luton Town 2 QPR 0: Heikkinen's head refreshes Luton
By Norman
"....Luton scored the goals; Rangers played the more skilful football, but any talent-spotting agents were keeping their heads down.
".... Ian Holloway had reportedly come over the parapet and offered to name names. Last night, however, Holloway denied that. He said his own experience of being offered money occurred four years ago. "Agents are needed," he said. "Ninety nine per cent do a fantastic job. There may be one grain of bad sand but it's not the whole beach. I'm gobsmacked at what's been written."
Newell said: "It's not a lost cause but most managers have been lukewarm. I'm frustrated and so are the authorities. Money is going out of the game and that's wrong. But not all agents are bad. Some have supported me."

Sporting Life

".. Holloway later denied backing up Newell's claims, pointing out that his comments related to a transfer issue four years ago.Asked if he supported Newell's words, the Loftus Road boss said: "I support Ian Holloway, I work for QPR and support QPR."...
Holloway added: "How can I put this, if you are on a beach we are talking about one grain of sand on the whole beach."It's dangerous for people who write stories to create a false impression of what the game is all about."I spoke about this four years ago and as far as I'm concerned it's old news.".... "I haven't come out and said I'm fully backing Mike. Agents are a massive part of the game and 99.9% of them do a fantastic job for their clients."I'm gobsmacked that this is such a big story and if you ask Mike I think he'll say he's gobsmacked too."

Saturday, January 21, 2006

Managerial Comments

Ian Holloway believes Luton's two goal victory margin flattered the home side - as the Hoops tasted defeat for the first time since Boxing Day.
A goal in each half from Markus Heikkinen and Steve Howard saw Rangers' four match mini unbeaten run come to an end.
"I thought 2-0 flattered them. I felt we were pushing in the second half, but the second goal killed us. They were very physical but got the job done.
"You have to take your chances at this level - we didn't and they did and that was the difference."We had six shots in the first half and didn't score any.''
Ollie also bemoaned his sides' poor defending - especially for the first goal.
"We're conceding far too many goals."We were punished for sloppy defending. Gaz didn't push up for the first goal and you can't afford to make errors like that. He's held his hands up and it's over now.''
But Ollie was keen to heap praise on Marc Nygaard, who was a constant threat both on the deck and in the air after entering the fray as a second half substitute.
"I really wanted to start Marc, but his recent injury problems meant we felt it would be better for him to come off the bench."He came on and caused them all sort of problems - more than justifying his place in the squad after injury.''
*Due to circumstances beyond our control there is no interview with Ian Holloway on QPR World. http://www.qpr.premiumtv.co.uk/page/News/NewsDetail/0,,10373~772063,00.html

Mike Newell and Ian Holloway, whose recent revelations have re-ignited the debate about 'bungs' in football, discussed the problem before Luton's 2-0 win over QPR at Kenilworth Road.
Goals in either half from Marcus Heikkinen and Steve Howard saw Luton climb above QPR to claim ninth spot in the Championship table.
Luton boss Newell, who sparked off the debate by claiming that he had been offered money during transfer deals, said: "I spoke to Ian before the game to say I appreciated someone else coming out and backing me up because really it's been a long time coming."
But Holloway later denied backing up Newell's claims, pointing out that his comments related to a transfer issue four years ago.
Asked if he supported Newell's words, the Loftus Road boss said: "I support Ian Holloway, I work for QPR and support QPR.
"I like Mike Newell but not today because he beat me. He's an honest fellow and can only talk about his experiences."
Holloway added: "How can I put this, if you are on a beach we are talking about one grain of sand on the whole beach.
"It's dangerous for people who write stories to create a false impression of what the game is all about.
"I spoke about this four years ago and as far as I'm concerned it's old news."
Holloway said he had told his then chairman Nick Blackburn how a deal for a player who was supposed to be available on a free transfer had then seen the involvement of a fee.
He added: "I haven't come out and said I'm fully backing Mike. Agents are a massive part of the game and 99.9% of them do a fantastic job for their clients.
"I'm gobsmacked that this is such a big story and if you ask Mike I think he'll say he's gobsmacked too."
Newell earlier said: "I didn't bring up bungs. I was asked in conversation if I'd been offered money and I said I had - I didn't say bungs.
"That's what made the headlines but I want this to be the end of it all for me now.
"It's up to the authorities now and I get the feeling they share my frustrations. It's definitely not the lost cause everyone's making it out to be."
Luton's play-off prospects are by no means a lost cause and they could point to further disallowed efforts from Howard and substitute Warren Feeney.
On the game Newell said: "I think that's the first win of the year for us if I'm not mistaken and it's a pleasing result."
Holloway said: "I'm bitterly disappointed. We did a lot of things right apart from put the ball in the net and that's what gets you results."

Mike Newell was happy with his side's performance against QPR
Hatters boss Mike Newell celebrated his side's first win of 2006 by describing the victory over QPR as a 'decent performance.'
Markus Heikkinen and Steve Howard both found the target for Luton as QPR's four match unbeaten league run was brought to an end in some style.
QPR had a lot of the ball but I thought we stood up well
Mike Newell on QPR victory

Luton actually had the ball in the net four times throughout the game as Howard and Warren Feeney both had efforts ruled out and Newell believes his side should have won the game by a more comfortable margin.
"It might have been more than two decent goals," said Newell. "It was a decent performance but I thought the foul by Steve Howard was a bit harsh to be honest. It has gone out of the game now where you can't compete for the ball when it is up in the air.
"As for the second goal which was ruled out, I thought it was because Warren was standing behind the goalkeeper but the referee's assistant said that it was Howie who was offside. It looked like a decent goal but there is nothing you can do."
"QPR had a lot of the ball but I though we stood up well. At the end of the day it was a decent result from the lads."
The Luton squad are now set to take a short break to Portugal as the club take a mini-break from league action with no game planned until next Tuesday when The Hatters make the trip to Sheffield Wednesday.
Newell added: "I think the lads have earned a break if you look at the results they have achieved during the first part of the season. It will be the last chance we get to go for a break between now and the end of the season.
"There is no group bonding needed within the squad but I think the lads have earned themselves a break for a few days and hopefully they can relax and recharge the batteries."

Luton Defeat QPR 2-0

Luton Official Site

Luton recorded their first victory over QPR in 15 games as Markus Heikkinen and Steve Howard both found the target at Kenilworth Road.
Heikkinen had given Luton an early first-half lead but the match wasn't made totally safe until Howard hit his 99th goal for the club, five minutes from the end.
The home-side also had two goals disallowed, one through Howard and the other by Warren Feeney, as Mike Newell's team recorded only their second win in nine games.
Luton went into the game boosted by the news that Howard was fit to play despite struggling throughout the week with an ankle injury that had made him a doubt in the pre-match build-up.
Howard's inclusion meant Newell named the same starting line-up that was defeated by Wolves last Friday with Enoch Showunmi continuing his role in central midfield and recent signing David Bell remaining on the bench.
Likewise, Ian Holloway, the QPR manager, named an unchanged starting line-up from last week's victory over Southampton with Georges Santos recovering from an ankle injury.
Both sides made a nervous start to the game but Luton almost made the breakthrough in bizarre circumstances within five minutes. Kevin Foley's surging run down the right saw the Luton full-back twice try and whip in a cross into the area with his second attempt hitting the heel of Matthew Rose and striking the crossbar.
QPR almost broke the deadlock themselves on nine minutes when Marcus Bignot wormed his way past two Luton defenders to cut a pass inside the area that Gareth Ainsworth fired over the crossbar from 15-yards.
Luton were beginning to see more of the play and a dangerous corner from Kevin Nicholls helped the home-side opening the scoring on 12 minutes. The Luton skipper picked out Chris Coyne at the far post and after a bit of head tennis in the penalty area, Paul Underwood nodded on for Heikkinen to head past Simon Royce from close range.
AFTER 15 MINS: Luton 1 v 0 QPR
The visitors continued to look dangerous going forward and Lee Cook should have found the target on 20 minutes when the midfielder split open Luton's midfield to drill a left footed shot narrowly wide of Marlon Beresford's goal.
Showunmi almost doubled Luton's advantage on 25 minutes when he flicked Underwood's near-post corner towards goal. The Nigerian rose highest in a packed penalty area and showed tremendous aerial strength to almost beat Royce from an acute angle.
AFTER 30 MINS: Luton 1 v 0 QPR
Rangers continued to find space in Luton's penalty area and, on 39 minutes, Richard Langley should have found the target from 15-yards but squandered his effort after the home-side's defence were caught napping from a set piece.
The visitors were dominating the midfield battle with Rangers able to press forward with ease. Bignot had an opportunity for Rangers on 43 minutes but his shot flew straight into the arms of Beresford.
Luton thought they had taken a two-goal lead when Howard had the ball in the back of the net on the stroke of half-time. The former Northampton striker rose highest to beat Royce and head home Rowan Vine's right wing cross but referee Richard Beeby adjudged the striker had impeded the Rangers goalkeeper in the penalty area, which resulted in the Northamptonshire official leaving to a chorus of boos at half-time.
QPR came storming out of the block after the restart with Luton quickly under the cosh in the early stages of the second-half. Paul Furlong almost brought the visitors back on level terms on 50 minutes but couldn't guide a near post header on target after Ainsworth's cross from the right.
Rangers began to boss proceedings with Luton's midfield, at times, looking lost and unable to cope with the visitors' pace. Langley saw a glimpse of goal on 59 minutes but failed to trouble Beresford with a 10-yard shot that travelled straight into the arms of the Luton goalkeeper.
AFTER 60 MINS: Luton 1 QPR 0
Beresford was called upon to make a smart save on 62 minutes when he denied Furlong from close range. After collecting a short pass from Ainsworth, Furlong turned instantly to see his shot from six-yards that was blocked by the Luton goalkeeper.
To try and strengthen the midfield, Newell threw Leon Barnett into the fold as Showunmi, who had been struggling throughout, was replaced.
For the second time in the game Luton had an effort ruled out when Feeney was deemed to be standing in an offside position after striking home a loose ball. Howard and Carlos Edwards both saw shots saved by ex-Hatter Royce but as the ball broke into Feeney's path, the linesman was quick to raise his flag.
AFTER 75 MIN: Luton 1 QPR 0
Fenney almost got his name on the score sheet on 79 minutes when the Northern Ireland striker struck a ferocious shot across the face of QPR's goal after striking his effort first time from Edwards' pass.
With Luton beginning to dominate possession a goal was always possible and the home side made the match safe as Howard stroked home his 11th goal of the season. The striker was in the right place as Edwards dragged the ball back, after a powerful run down the flank, for Howard to side-foot home.
Luton: Beresford, Foley, Coyne, Underwood, Edwards, Nicholls, Vine (Feeney 65), Showunmi (Barnett 64), Brkovic (Morgan 74), Howard, Heikkinen
Subs not used: Bell, Brill,
Bookings: Feeney (69)
QPR: Royce, Bignot (Taylor 83), Shittu, Rose, Ainsworth (Moore 79), Santos, Cook, Baidoo (Nygaard h/t), Furlong, Lomas, Langley
Subs not used: Milanese, Donnelly,
Bookings: Shittu (56), Langley (84)
Referee: Mr R J Beeby
Attendance: 9,797 (1,800 from QPR)


Rangers' four match unbeaten league run came to an end at Kenilworth Road.
Goals in each half from Markus Heikkinen and Steve Howard clinched a 2-0 victory for the hosts, who jumped above the Hoops in the Championship table as a result of the three point haul.
Defeat was a tad harsh on Rangers, who enjoyed a lot of attacking possession, but ultimately failed to make the most of their chances.
Heikkinen's 13th minute header had given Luton a 1-0 lead, before Howard's six-yard strike sealed the win late on.The half-time scoreline was rather harsh on the Hoops, who enjoyed the lion's share of possession and crafted a hatful of goalscoring opportunities.
But the visitors were the own worst enemies for the goal they conceded, failing to clear their lines sufficiently from a corner and gifting Heikkinen acres of space to head home.
Ian Holloway named an unchanged line up, with Georges Santos overcoming an ankle injury to retain his place alongside Dan Shittu in the heart of the Hoops back four.
Marc Nygaard returned from injury to take his place on the Rangers substitute's bench, but there was no place in the 16 for new signing Marcin Kus.
After an encouraging opening for Rangers, it was Luton who came within a lick of paint of taking a fourth minute lead when Kevin Foley's strike was deflected off Matthew Rose and struck the face of Simon Royce's left hand post.
But Rangers were soon on the front foot with Gareth Ainsworth flashing a right footed strike a yard wide of Marlon Beresford's right post.
From their very next attack Lee Cook was sent tumbling to ground and Richard Langley's resultant free kick forced Beresford into a fine save with the ball destined for the back of the net.
Marcus Bignot was the surprise provider for Rangers' next effort on goal, but after his fine solo run down the right flank, the onrushing Ainsworth was unable to apply the finishing touch, blazing over from the edge of the six-yard box.
But it was Luton who took the lead against the run of play on 13 minutes when, after Rangers failed to clear their lines sufficiently from a corner, Marcus Heikkinen was gifted time and space to plant his header past the static Royce from just inside the six-yard box.
Undeterred, Rangers continued to take the game to their hosts, with the lively Cook ghosting past Carlos Edwards and Enoch Showunmi before firing just wide of the post.
Luton's biggest threat continued to be from set-pieces, with the gangly Showunmi glancing a near post header just wide on 25 minutes.
Rangers finished the half in the ascendancy, with the impressive Bignot firing a fizzing right footed strike straight at Beresford.
But it was Luton who felt hard done by on the stroke of half-time, when Steve Howard's header was ruled out for a foul on Royce, when it appeared as though there was very little contact between the pair.
Holloway introduced Nygaard at the expense of Baidoo on the resumption and the big man soon ruffled a few feathers in the Luton back four, linking up well with Cook to earn Rangers a corner.
But it was Nygaard's strike partner Paul Furlong that squandered a golden chance to put Rangers on terms soon after, when, after good work on the right flank from Ainsworth, the veteran striker's near post header flashed over the bar.
Furlong was proving a constant threat in the air and on 54 minutes the powerhouse front-man glanced Cook's corner narrowly wide.
Shittu entered the referee's notebook for a clumsy foul on Howard a minute later, but the resultant free-kick came to nothing.
Luton's first attack of note arrived on the hour, but after a fine flick on from Howard, Rowan Vine's finish lacked conviction.
Rangers should've been on terms a minute later. Ainsworth's run at the heart of the hosts defence eventually saw him pull the ball back for Furlong, who having turned his man with ease, was only denied by an outstanding Beresford stop.
Luton had a second goal chalked out on 67 minutes, when second half substitute Warren Feeney, who was booked for his protests, was adjudged to have been in an offside position after Edwards and Howard were earlier denied by Royce.
Feeney's introduction certainly seemed to have the desired effect for Mike Newell, who saw his Northern Ireland hit-man glance a near post header inches wide on 70 minutes.
Matthew Rose was getting forward regularly and when his cross found Nygaard, the Rangers faithful behind the goal were waiting for the net to bulge, only for Beresford to produce a comfortable save.
At the other end, Feeney fired wide, before Ainsworth made way for Stefan Moore and Andy Taylor replaced Bignot.
Victory was all but sealed for the Hatters on 84 minutes, when Howard poached home from the edge of the six-yard box after a fine solo run from Trinidad and Tobago international Edwards.

League Table

Dave Bassett Assesses Who'll Make the Playoffs - "QPR aren't good enough"

'Cardiff won't feel play-off pressure' - Bassett
Jan 21 2006 Ian Hunt, Western Mail

THE race for a Championship play-off spot remains wide open, Cardiff City being one of 11 clubs who entertain realistic hopes of claiming one of the four places on offer....a long list of chasing teams - from Leeds in third right down to Stoke in 13th - harbouring hopes ....Burnley, Norwich, QPR, Luton and Stoke in their wake cannot yet be discounted from the play-off equation....
Dave Bassett...., believes Cardiff are one of seven teams - Leeds, Watford, Palace, Preston, Wolves and Norwich being the others - who have a good chance of getting into the play-offs....
, ......The former Wimbledon manager, though, is unequivocal about the prospects of his most recent employers - and QPR - squeezing into the top six.
"Southampton have got no chance," he says...""QPR aren't good enough either. I wouldn't write off Luton just yet, but they've slipped away in recent weeks and it could be just beyond them for this season."

Western Mail: Page 2: The Bluebirds and their Championship play-off rivals

QPR - January arrivals: Andy Taylor: Defender brought in on loan from Blackburn to beef up the back-line. The youngster, whose loan spell at Loftus Road could be extended, can play anywhere across the back four.
Marcin Kus: Polish international defender signed on a six-month loan from Polonia Warsaw.
Next six matches: Luton (a), Leicester (h), Leeds (a), Millwall (h), Crystal Palace (a), Stoke (h)
Play-off prospects: Currently five points adrift of the top six, Ian Holloway's side lack a prolific goalscorer and it is doubtful they have the strength in depth to make the play-offs.

Bean Joining Blackpool on a Free

Pool Land Marcus Bean

The Seasiders completed the signing of Queen's Park Rangers midfielder MARCUS BEAN late on Friday afternoon.
The 21-year-old midfielder has joined on loan to ensure he is available for Saturday's game with Bristol City, but the classy and combative midfielder will sign a permanent contract with the club on Monday.
Bean has been at Loftus Road since the age of ten and has progressed through ranks to make his senior debut at the age of seventeen, but it will be one he will want to forget as he suffered the ignominy of being sent off in a game that saw four players receive the red card.
Bean's energetic style of play and ability to break up play saw the Hammersmith born man pick up QPR's Young Player of the Season last term, but the lack of first team action this season saw Marcus take up a loan spell at Swansea City where he made nine appearances. On his return to Loftus Road Bean played a part in six games, his last being in the R's 1-0 Boxing Day defeat at Brighton. Following discussions with Rangers manager Ian Holloway, Marcus decided to seek regular first team football elsewhere and jumped at the chance to join the Seasiders.

Marcus Bean has moved to Blackpool on an emergency loan with a view to a permanent deal.
Bean will be available to turn out for the League One outfit against Bristol City on Saturday.
'Beany' made 66 appearances for the Superhoops and started 23 games in Rangers promotion winning season.
The midfielder is expected to complete a permanent deal on Monday.
He will join the club on a free transfer but Rangers have insisted on a sell-on clause.

One QPR Let Get Away... Dougie Freedman Turns 34

Dougie Freedman Turns 34. Born January 21, 1972

Given a free transfer by QPR to Barnet in July 1974 without having played a first team game for QPR. In his first Barnet season, started scoring prolifically. In total, with his various clubs, he's played something like 400 League games and scored 150 goals and a couple of Scottish caps
..From Barnet went to Crystal Palace...Wolves...Nottingham Forrest...back to Crystal Palace:
Not that many players released by QPR have done that well elsewhere. Freedman is clearly a major exception.

Holloway on Bung allegetion Not News & FA Charge re Stoke...Agent Talks Legal Action...Newell on Managers' Silence

The Times - January 21, 2006

Holloway: forget the bungs, what about our fight charge?By Ashling O'Connor

WHEN Ian Holloway and Mike Newell shake hands today before kick-off between Queens Park Rangers and Luton Town, they will be sharing more than just a mid-table Coca-Cola Championship fixture. Aside from the referee, the managers will be in the spotlight in their respective dugouts for being whistleblowers.
After a week during which Newell went to the FA to dish the dirt on the agents and rival club officials he said had offered him bungs, Holloway was the first of his peers to back him up publicly with the allegation that he was offered £30,000 as an incentive to sign a player.
It is not a new story, however, and if the FA had wanted to take action before now, it needed only to have consulted press cuttings, QPR fanzines and the BBC’s documentary archives.
The alleged incident happened in July 2002, when Holloway signed Gino Padula, an Argentinian, from Jerez, the Spanish club, on a free transfer and was told that his club would have to pay £50,000 to the player’s agent to complete the deal. The suggestion was that the QPR manager would get a £30,000 cut of the money. He rejected the offer and reported it to Nick Blackburn, his chairman at the time. Like Newell, Holloway did not record any conversations.
Paul Taylor, the agent who recommended Padula to QPR, has denied any wrongdoing after being named in newspapers and has instructed his solicitors to defend his name. “People in the game who know my reputation know that it is not true,” he said.
The FA said yesterday that it would contact Holloway, who said that agents are queueing up with “whacking great wheelbarrows” to “fill up with money” for more information. Compliance officers have contacted Blackburn, who said that he would happily repeat a story he has told many times before.
Newell, who met FA officials on Wednesday, was grateful for the support but remains to be convinced what outcome, if any, will come from his meeting. “I don’t know whether they were surprised at what I told them, but I reckon they have boxes and boxes of files on this sort of thing,” he said. “As I have always said, the laws (governing agents) need changing.”
Holloway is also willing to tell the FA his story but appears more anxious to talk to them about the disciplinary proceedings hanging over his club. “Somebody has pulled this bung stuff out of a fanzine from four years ago,” he told The Times. “I would be very interested to talk to the FA, but more about two or three different things. Like what happened at Stoke City when my team were attacked and we are the ones being charged with failing to control our players.”
This month, the FA charged QPR for failing to control their players after a brawl at the Britannia Stadium on December 3. Fans were arrested after they attacked Simon Royce, the QPR goalkeeper. The situation escalated to a football disciplinary matter after players from both teams ran over to assist Royce but then appeared to fight among themselves. The FA also charged Jake Cole, the QPR substitute goalkeeper, with violent conduct for his involvement.
The parties have until Wednesday to respond to the charges. Holloway has just done so, branding the FA action “a total disgrace”.
At least Brian Barwick, the FA chief executive, will not be able to ignore Holloway’s calls now that the QPR manager is a witness in the FA’s bung inquiry. An FA spokesman said: “We will be contacting Ian Holloway to request a meeting. We take these matters very seriously and our compliance department will thoroughly investigate any evidence of wrongdoing or breaches of regulation.”
As the transfer crossed international borders, the matter is expected to fall under Fifa’s jurisdiction, raising the prospect of a repeat of the ping-pong manner in which the investigation into Harry Kewell’s transfer from Leeds United to Liverpool in July 2003 has been treated.

TelegraphNewell back on offensive By Amar Azam (Filed: 21/01/2006)

Luton Town manager Mike Newell yesterday called on more managers to follow Ian Holloway's example after the Queens Park Rangers manager named an agent who had offered him a transfer bung.
Holloway revealed that Paul Taylor had offered him a £30,000 backhander as part of a free transfer deal to sign Argentine left-back Gino Padula from Spanish club Jerez. And Newell, who rocked the sport with his claims about agents last week, said: "I have had no regrets about expressing my opinion and it's nice that there has eventually been support. You have to ask yourself why more managers haven't come out."
Newell met the Football Association on Wednesday to discuss claims that he had been offered illegal transfer payments, and says that he is pleased by the reaction from the FA's Compliance Board.
"I got the impression that they shared the same frustration as me," he said. "It's now in their hands."
Newell's comments have infuriated the Football Agents Association, who have threatened to take him to court.
Newell responded: "Football can survive without agents. Agents would have you believe that they are part of the game but they are wrong." He added: "I have had an amazing amount of letters and emails from supporters, and they are the only group who aren't split on it. I hope we get new laws and regulations stopping people from printing money."

Friday, January 20, 2006

QPR's CFO, Chris Pennington Departing


QPR's Chief Financial Officer, Chris Pennington, is leaving the club and moving on to pastures new.
Chris, who has agreed to stay on until the end of February, said;
"I wish the club all the best for the future and I'll look forward to returning to Loftus Road to cheer on the Superhoops."
QPR Chairman, Gianni Paladini, thanked Pennington for his help.
"I'd like to thank him for his help since we came to the club. I wish him all the best for the future and he'll always be welcome at Loftus Road."

FA to Investigate Holloway's Bung Assertions


The Football Association have launched an investigation into QPR manager Ian Holloway´s claims he was offered a bribe to push through a player´s transfer.The FA will address the issue, which follows a week after Luton boss Mike Newell´s claims about a widespread bung culture, as a matter of priority and will be contacting Holloway on Friday morning.
The QPR manager will be asked to give evidence to investigators from the FA´s compliance unit that he was offered money to push through the free transfer of Argentinian full-back Gino Padula from Jerez.An FA spokesman said: "We will be contacting Ian Holloway to request a meeting. We take these matters very seriously and our compliance department will thoroughly investigate any evidence of wrongdoing or breaches of regulation."

BBC - FA to investigate Holloway claims

The FA have launched an investigation into QPR boss Ian Holloway's claims he was offered a bribe.(More)
The Football Association have launched an investigation into QPR manager Ian Holloway's claims he was offered a bribe to push through a player's transfer.
The FA will address the issue, which follows a week after Luton boss Mike Newell's claims about a widespread bung culture, as a matter of priority and will be contacting Holloway this morning.
The QPR manager will be asked to give evidence to investigators from the FA's compliance unit that he was offered money to push through the free transfer of Argentinian full-back Gino Padula from Jerez.
An FA spokesman told: "We will be contacting Ian Holloway to request a meeting. We take these matters very seriously and our compliance department will thoroughly investigate any evidence of wrongdoing or breaches of regulation.
"We would expect anyone who has evidence of any wrongdoing to come forward."
As the transfer was an international one, it will almost certainly fall under FIFA's jurisdiction.
The spokesman added: "If necessary we will pass on any information to FIFA and other national associations."
Former Rangers chairman Nick Blackburn has backed up Holloway's claims....
Blackburn, who was in control of QPR at the time, said such incidents were not isolated...."I heard stories all the time when I was chairman. I'm very disappointed the game has to endure this....Blackburn added: "Ian told me because he is an honest guy, but how many more of these deals happen behind the scenes when people are not so honest? It is an appalling state of affairs and it leaves me sickened. "I applaud Mike Newell for coming forward - and yet what happened to him? People turned on him. "We need to try to clear up the game."

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