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Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Paul Parker Talks on His Return to QPR (and of his Departure!)

[Not explained why the appointment has been described by QPR as "temporary"]
Ben Kosky/Kilburn Times
Parker is back to tackle a new challenge

PAUL Parker insists he has no designs on a coaching role at QPR despite his return to Loftus Road this week.
The former Rangers defender has had two spells as a manager at non-league level, but says coaching is behind him for good after taking up a new role as commercial and communications director with his old club.
Parker, who is combining the job with media work for broadcasters Setanta Sports, told the Times: "I'll be nothing to do with the football side of things.
"I've had my stint in managing and decided I liked being able to sleep at weekends, not having 11 to 16 people affecting my life.
"But I like being around a football club - that's what my life has been about - and I've always had a lot of affection for Queens Park Rangers.
"I was looking at the pitch on my first day and, while it brought back memories of when I played there, I'd rather be upstairs trying to do some good for the club.
"The idea is to help bring in new business, get more people involved, and try to get QPR back to where I believe the club should be."
Part of the reason for Parker's appointment was the popularity he enjoyed among QPR fans, having produced four years of consistency and excellence as sweeper, centre-back and full-back.
He played a major role in guiding Rangers to their second highest finish in the league - fifth in 1988 - and broke into the England squad to become a World Cup semi-finalist in 1990.
Parker's exit in a £2m transfer to Manchester United a year later was seen as inevitable, but he declared: "I never wanted to leave.
"I had no interest in playing for another London club, but Rangers decided they were going to cash in after the World Cup and, when Manchester United come knocking on your door, you've got to go."
Parker went on to win a clutch of medals with the Red Devils and wound down his career with Derby and Sheffield United, while Rangers lurched out of the Premiership and into a downward spiral.
But he is confident that the club is now moving forward, adding: "A lot of things have improved since John Gregory came back last season.
"I come from east London and I always likened QPR to West Ham in that the community supports its club and it has that homely feel.
"I still see that around QPR now and it's great to be back here."
QPR are expecting to finalise a new contract with Danish striker Marc Nygaard during the next few weeks. The 30-year-old forward is set to follow club captain Marcus Bignot, who signed a one-year deal to stay at Loftus Road last week.
Nygaard is one of only four first-team strikers left at the club following the departures of Paul Furlong and Kevin Gallen. Kilburn Times

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