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Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Briatore, QPR & Gulf Air Sponsorship and a QPR Non-Comment...Ramage on Newcastle..Simpson at QPR...Some "Flashbacks"

- The cutting-edge QPR Report Messageboard: Visit - even post on - the combination quasi-blog and messageboard for additional up-to-the-minute news about QPR, combined with QPR nostalgia and occasionally, general football items. All views genuinely welcome. Links to QPR information posted on other QPR board, encouraged! .....QPR REPORT Available on TWITTER!

- Tonight: Newcastle vs QPR

- On-This-Day Flashback: Koejoe scores..Harper saves two penalties and Gerry Francis' QPR draw at Sheffield United and Stewart Houston Wins Manager of The Month (and shortly later is axed)

- Who's the Real Owner of Leeds United?

- The Decline of Freddy Adu

- Happy at QPR: Gianluca Di Marzio Will Not Be Napoli's New Sporting Director - Report -----More about Gianni Di Marzio & QPR

This is London/David Yuill - Leigertwood's plea for QPR
- Mikele Leigertwood insists QPR must go into every game demanding a win if they are to be in the promotion reckoning in May.
- The west London side will face their toughest test of the season so far tonight, when they face Newcastle at St James' Park. Leigertwood said: "We can't be looking at a point here and there. We are going to every ground, every game, whether it's Newcastle away or Blackpool at home, expecting to win." Jim Magilton's men got their promotion hunt back on track with convincing wins over Cardiff and Barnsley and Leigertwood believes automatic promotion is far from out of sight. He added: "At the start of the season we were looking to get promoted. That goal hasn't changed but we are going to need to be consistent." This is London

- Flavio Briatore, banned from Formula One over the 'crashgate' affair, now faces questions over his role as co-owner of England's Queens Park Rangers Football Club, sponsored by Bahrain's national carrier, Gulf Air.
- The Football League has requested details of the International Automobile Federation (FIA), motorsport's governing body, decision to ban the former team boss of Renault over his part in conspiring to fix the result of last year's Singapore Grand Prix.
- Spokesman Nick Jones told GulfWeekly: "The Football League is aware of the situation and is currently investigating further."
- The league requires every club owner to pass a 'fit and proper person' test and one of its rules says nobody can own a football club if they are banned from a sport's governing body.
- The Football League chairman, Lord Mawhinney, has written to the FIA to request further details of its decision, another Football League spokesman added. "Thereafter, the League will consider its position on the matter."
- Briatore is part-owner at Loftus Road with Formula One boss Bernie Ecclestone and Indian steel magnate Lakshmi Mittal.
- The sponsorship deal was controversially struck with Gulf Air's former CEO Bjorn Naf after a brief encounter with Briatore at the 2008 Gulf Air Bahrain Grand Prix sparked off talks which led to the new sporting alliance between the kingdom, Gulf Air and Queens Park Rangers Football Club.
- Gulf Air has kept quiet about the current controversy in the same manner it would not reveal specific financial aspects of the sponsorship deal although details were banded about the London press
- One newspaper's headline screamed: Rangers in £7m sponsorship deal. It reported that the contract was believed to be worth £1 million a season (BD598,700) and the overall value could rise to £7 million (BD4.2 million) depending on the club gaining promotion and staying in the Premier League.
- The club has visited the kingdom once to stage coaching sessions with local children. A proposed match against the national side was cancelled.
- It wasn't long before members of Bahrain's Parliament, critical of the way Mr Naf was running the loss-making national carrier, questioned the sponsorship deal suggesting that most people in Bahrain had never heard of the Championship side.
- And, Mr Naf's fate took the same turn as many who attempted to manager QPR under Briatore. Jim Magilton is currently the seventh manager since he took over and Royal Jordanian Airline's former boss Samer Majali is now in the Gulf Air hot seat.
- The flamboyant Italian is also chairman of the holding company that owns the club and a director on the board. He missed his side's 5-2 victory against Barnsley on Saturday which took QPR up to eighth place in the second tier of English football.
- Briatore quit Renault ahead of last Monday's FIA hearing into Renault's ordering of Nelson Piquet junior to crash in Singapore to orchestrate a win for his teammate Fernando Alonso.
- The FIA also handed a ban - suspended until the end of the 2011 season - to Renault.
- Briatore has denied all the accusations against him over the affair, saying they were 'outrageous lies'.
- A senior source at QPR said: "We haven't released any sort of statement and won't be at this stage. We are making no comment at all and have nothing to say."- Briatore was indefinitely banned from Formula One which was desperate to put the damaging Renault race-fixing scandal behind it at the weekend, but it was not easy with the sport returning to the scene of the incident in Singapore.
- By a quirk of fate, the 14th race of the season took place in the city-state just days after Renault was slapped with a suspended two-year ban by the International Automobile Federation.
- It was here at Formula One's inaugural night race last year that team principal Briatore and chief engineer Pat Symonds allegedly ordered Nelson Piquet junior to deliberately crash to help Alonso win.
- Both Briatore and Symonds have been thrown out of the sport and Piquet's reputation is in ruins, but Alonso was cleared of any wrongdoing. Last year, Alonso began in 15th position, but after the Spaniard made an early pit stop to refuel, Piquet crashed into a wall, prompting the deployment of the safety car.
- As Alonso's rivals then gradually disappeared into the pits to refuel, he catapulted himself into the lead and went on to win his first race in a year. Gulf Weekly

Peter Ramage Looks Forward to Newcastle

Ben Kosky/Kilburn Times Ramage limitation required- PETER Ramage's parents were thrilled to witness his first career goal - but they might have mixed feelings if their son adds a second this week.
The QPR right-back had clocked up more than 100 career appearances without finding the target before his late equaliser on the opening day against Blackpool.
But the former Newcastle defender can expect stony silence rather than gleeful celebrations from his family should he do the unthinkable and score on his return to St James' Park.
"I don't think I'd make it out alive!" Ramage admitted. "I've got so many family and friends going to the game that I'd probably be disowned.
"To be honest, I didn't have any idea when my first goal was going to come - I thought I was going to be one of those players like Rob Jones who go through their entire career without scoring!
"At least now I can say I scored one and it was especially nice that my mum and dad were there because they don't get to many games. I did try to claim the goal at first, but I can't deny it was a cross that went in.
"For obvious reasons, though, this is the one I've been looking forward to most of all. I make no secret of being a Newcastle fan and, if we have a day off, I still go to as many of their games as I can.
"I tried to get tickets for a couple of friends for the Blackpool game last week and they were sold out, so that shows what a big draw Newcastle still are. It'll be a great occasion for our fans."
Rangers will be making their first visit to St James' Park since April 1996, when Les Ferdinand featured in Newcastle's 2-1 win and helped push his old club closer to relegation.
The Magpies' own membership of the Premier League went unbroken until last season, when they went down in chaos and turmoil - yet their bid for an immediate return has begun much better than most expected.
And Ramage, who left his native north-east to sign for Rangers in 2008, declared: "With the quality Newcastle have got, it hasn't surprised me how they've started - those are mainly Premier League players out there.
"The acid test will be when they pick up a few injuries, which is bound to happen in a physical league like the Championship. But there are some good youngsters on the bench and I think they'll come through.
"Newcastle's expectations are similar to ours - to go up - but we've done quite well against the majority of the top teams since I've been here and we'll certainly be looking for three points at St James' Park" Kilburn Times

Peter Ramage - The Shields Gazette - Old boy Peter has no regrets about leaving Toon
- LEAVING Newcastle United is a hard decision for any footballer, not least one who has supported the club all his life.
One player who faced such a heart-wrenching decision was Peter Ramage, who reluctantly left St James's Park last year in search of first-team football.
While the Queens Park Rangers defender, back at his old stomping ground for the first time tomorrow night, candidly admits he will never know whether he'd have had a more significant role had he stayed on Tyneside, he insists he has no regrets about heading south.
- Ramage found himself down the pecking order at the club after returning from a serious knee injury, and signed for Iain Dowie, Alan Shearer's assistant during his brief spell as manager at United, at Loftus Road.
"I feel I'm a better player, and I've grown up as a person," Ashington-born Ramage told the Gazette.
"I don't regret moving on. Maybe if I'd stayed I might have played a few games last season, and that's at the back of your mind, but I'm enjoying it down here.
"It's a fantastic bunch of lads – everyone sticks together and looks after each other."
However, the 25-year-old – who went to QPR as a specialist right-back, having been a centre-half at Newcastle – has found himself on the bench ahead of the one fixture, above all others, he wanted to play in at the start of the season.
Ramage said: "This is the fixture I looked for – I didn't care about the others!
"It's not only myself, but the other lads as well. Newcastle's a Premier League team, and it's like drawing them in the cup.
"It's been frustrating, and I've been itching to get on. If I start, I'll be looking forward to it more than any of the others.
"Everyone knows what the club means to me.
"If I'm not playing, I'll be supporting the lads and trying to gee them up. It's an old cliché, but it's not about me. It's about the team getting a result, but if I play, then great."
Ramage has closely followed United's fortunes since he left the club, and while their start to the Championship season might have raised many eyebrows many given the turmoil off the field at St James's Park, Ramage isn't surprised, having shared a dressing room with many of Chris Hughton's side.
He added: "They've got experienced pros there who know how to do their jobs. They know how to put other things to the back of their minds and get on with the job.
"It's no surprise to me. I predicted they'd do well in the division.
"They've kept the nucleus from last season, which has been the key.
They've got players who know how to grind out results, and they've won games comfortably.
"And from a fan's point of view, I hope they keep going, apart from tomorrow night."
Ramage raced home after his team's 5-2 home win over Barnsley to watch the second half of Newcastle's 4-0 win at Ipswich.
"I watched the second half – I rushed home for it – and I was impressed with them," said Ramage. "Ipswich are a good team, no matter what their league position is.
"They weathered the storm, and scored goals at the right time. It was a great hat-trick from Kevin Nolan. They're scoring goals through the team."
Tributes were made to the late Sir Bobby Robson before, during and after the game on an emotional evening at Portman Road, and the former England manager was a huge influence on Ramage as he came up through the ranks at St James's Park.
He said: "I travelled a few times under him, and was also on the bench. He was a massive influence – I had my education under him.
"It was good to see the game played in the right spirit, and from a Newcastle point of view, they did a professional job and came away with the points."
- Leaders United, two points clear at the top of the Championship, are favourites to collect another three points in midweek, but Ramage insists Jim Magilton's side, lying eighth, fancy their chances of an upset, having been beaten just once so far this season.
"The gaffer's philosophy is pass and move, and to get the ball down," said Ramage. "We've done that, and played some really good stuff.
"We outplayed Cardiff for 90 minutes, who are a really good Championship side. We did the same on Saturday, and we're going there full of confidence.
"Some of the players haven't played at St James's Park before, and they've been asking what it's like. They're looking forward to it as much as me." Shields Gazette

re Jay Simpson - Yann Tear/Ealing Gazette - QPR: On-loan jay relishing promotion battle
- JAY SIMPSON is convinced he will benefit from playing in a team gunning for promotion rather than one fighting to beat the drop.
The 20-year-old Arsenal striker has spent the past two seasons on loan to sides battling relegation - Millwall in League One two years ago and West Brom in the Premier League last term.
But even though he is taking a step down, he believes his time at QPR will be more fruitful.
"My last two loan spells were with teams fighting relegation, so I think it will help me a lot being here, where the team is pushing for success," Simpson said.
"It is difficult at times when you're down there, because sometimes there's not such a great atmosphere around the changing room and maybe even some players have given up hope.
"The fact that it was a team looking up rather than down helped me make the decision to come here, really, and now I'm looking forward to the new challenge.
"Mind you, being in a team that was relegated didn't affect my confidence. I still enjoyed it and my first spell out on loan two seasons ago helped me grow up into a man."
Simpson, who scored just once in 13 appearances for Albion last season, has already gone one better for Rangers, vindicating his decision to choose them as his next loan move.
He grabbed both goals in last week's 2-0 win at Cardiff and could be the answer to the team's goalscoring problems.
He is being used as an outright striker rather than a winger, as he was at the Hawthorns.
"Before I signed, the boss said he wanted to play me up top if I came here and that's where I want to play,"
Simpson said. "I spoke to Matthew Connolly before coming here and he spoke highly of the place. He gave me good insight into the club and that's been important in helping me settle in. I was also impressed with what the manager had to offer about his plans for the season."
Could Simpson stay with Rangers after his year is up? The lad from Enfield will not rule it out.
"I'm taking things one step at a time and not thinking about Arsenal right now," he said. "I'm just determined to prove myself. If I do well here, then it will generate interest from all over.
"The end of the season's a long way off but as far as I know, I will be going back at the end of the season and Arsenal are watching me in the home games, but I will leave that up to them." Ealing Gazette

- Brief QPR Loanee, Jason Jarrett to Port Vale

- "Hiring and Retaining a Good Front Office Team"

- Four Year Flashback: Paladini Profiled in The Times....Paladini/QPR begins Legal Action Against the Evening Standard
- Four Year Flashback: Gianni Paladini Appointed QPR Chairman
- [Four years later, at least a few messgaboard posters are speculating about a supposed prominent Paladini role if the Mittals take over from Briatore]

- Three Year Flashback: "QPR vs AKUTRS"

- QPR Fan/Mirror Blogger Jesse Whitock on QPR vs Barnsley

Helguson Injury UpdateHelguson Injury Update....

Flashback: A QPR Vietnam-Era Soldier/Supporter letter to QPR - [Note: If anyone should happen to know whatever happened to PFC Nils Guy, please post here or contact]

- QPR Supporter and Former Chairman, Bill Power (BP) Birthday yesterday

- The Return of Football Aid - QPR

- The Business Views (non QPR) of Lakshmi Mittal

- Next game after next: Swansea Away on Saturday

- Long-time QPR SUPPORTER, Harold Winton Honoured by QPR with Lifetime Achievement Award

- Using The Term "Yid" to Apply to Spurs/Spurs Supporters

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