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Sunday, December 31, 2006

QPR's 2006: "It was the best of times. It was the Worst of Times."

"It was the best of times. It was the worst of times… It was the age of wisdom; it Was the age of Foolishness. ..." Actually - at least in the eye of this beholder -there were very few “best of times” for QPR during 2006 either on or off the field..

2006: A year that entered with QPR on the edge of playoff spot and Chairman Comments about the club "now sailing in safe waters" ends with the club having lost six out of seven games and struggling to stay out the relegation trio.

2006: The Year about rumours of a managerial change and of Board interference and a Chairman's announcement of complete support for the manager...Then "Gardening Leave" and "The Trial" (which led to acquittals but no subsequent comment by the Chairman). The Year of Legal Action threatened against the Fan Magazine, AKUTRS. The year that a Response to the AKUTRS article was demanded and agreed to; but not written/published (at least as of yet.) The appointment and termination of Waddock and McDonald...The appointment and departure within a couple of months, of Chief Operating Officer, Graham Mackrell. The "departure" and then sudden reeemergence months later - without any explanation - of Defender Ugo Ukah. The announcement that a number of players will be leaving in the summer. And then they end up not leaving.

Allegations about a closed training ground - strongly denied (and legal action threatened against the Evening Standard for making them.. A pre-season friendly against MK Dons ("Wimbledon") announced and then swiftly cancelled after "threats.") And statements by Chairman Paladini about everything being ok except for some conspiratorial allegations about plots by a few "fans." And of course a pre-season trip of Italy, with suits for all players promised but perhaps not delivered. And a Chairman reportedly now wearing a bullet proof vest and a Detective from "The Trial" now employed at Loftus Road. Board Member and investor, Dunga leaves to manage Brazil.

What made it even harder to bare was that a number of the problems of the club were virtually self-inflicted: Actions taken that didn't need to be taken; players signed who contributed very little to the First team; but did make their contribution to the club's wage bill. That of course, is primarily the fault of whoever signed them. A neophyte manager appointed after an experienced manager - QPR's longest-serving manager since Alec Stock was placed on "gardening leave." ostensibly because he had applied for the Leicester City Managership position - having been given leave to do so by the club. Gary Waddock was then appointed acting manager and then despite a run of really bad results, being given the job on a permanent basis.

2006 was The Year of "The Trial" (and the acquittal of all of the accused.) [See Tracy Stent's Trial Report

...And never forgetting a 10% per year, 10 million pound debt oweable to the mysterious ABC Corporation continues to hover around the club even as other debts also persist. And several times the Chairman speaks about replacing the ABC Loan.


December 2005 - December 2005
January 2006 - January 2006
February - February
March - March
April - April
May - May
June - June
July - July
August - August
September - September
October - October

* Charles Dickens: A Tale of Two Cities

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