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Saturday, January 09, 2010

QPR Report Saturday: Pellicori?...League Attendances Up (QPR Attendances Down)...Flashbacks: Tommasi Departs..Recalling The Mick Dennis QPR Article


- Also check out the combined messageboard and QPRnews blog QPR Report Messageboard! Check Back throughout the dayfor comprehensive -(obsessive!)- cutting-edge QPR-related news snippets. Feel free to post: All QPR Perspectives genuinely Welcomed

- Chelsea Claim that Chelsea Fans Not Expressing Anti-Semitism with "We Hate Yids"

- Birthdays for Iain Dowie (45) and Marc Nygaard

- Championship Form Guide for Past Six Matches (QPR showing Relegation Form)

- Anoher Blackstock Goal as Nottingham Forest unbeaten run goes on and on and on!...Recalling Briatore vs Lee Camp

- Hamilton's Jamie McArthur Thinks Will be Joining Championship Club

- Cardiff Statement re Tax Payment

- "Managers Can Pay a Price for Loyalty"

[Pellicori to Mantova?"

And now also: re Pellicori [Web Translation] ".... In the market of repair, the Queen's Park Rangers player seems more willing than ever to return to Italy.. Moves very well Brescia that probed the trail rich with Catania, conducting the operation with the Parma: Budel, Cordova and Manzoni (for pay and Rispoli). Goal.com via QPR Italia

- Sensible Talk from Graham Taylor

Meanwhile Watford Manager, Malky Mackay on Helguson
"I would love to keep Heidar [Helguson] and have him back here. I will be trying everything we can to get him back here. "He has been a great professional and servant to this football club for the second time and I will be trying everything I can do to get him back." Watford Observer

- Crowds at Coca-Cola Football League matches have risen by more than 3% during the first half of the 2009/10 season.
- More than 8.6m fans have attended matches during the first five months of the league season at an average of 10,441 fans per match, compared to 10,101 at the same stage twelve months ago.
- These encouraging figures were boosted by a December fixture programme that attracted the highest average crowd (11,411) for League matches since 1959/60 and the 19th highest of all time.
- Football League crowds are currently at their highest levels for 50 years and have topped the 16 million mark in each of the last five seasons.
- Football League Chairman, Lord Mawhinney, said: "It is very encouraging to see more and more supporters going through the turnstiles at Football League grounds.
- "The dedication they have shown towards their clubs during a challenging economic period further underlines the strength of the domestic game."
- The League's two showpiece cup competitions - the Carling Cup and the Johnstone's Paint Trophy - have also witnessed growing popularity this season. In the Carling Cup, crowds have increased by more than 3% during the competition's 50th year, whilst the Johnstone's Paint Trophy has seen attendances rocket by a massive 37%. Football League

2009/2010 - 13,409 (after 12 home games) (MagiltoN/Gallen-Bircham/Hart)
2008/2009 - 14,003 (Dowie/Ainsworth/Sousa/Ainsworth)
2007/2008 - 13,958 (Gregory/Harford/De Canio)
2006/2007 - 12,936 (Waddock/Gregory)
[* Or September 2007 Club takeover statement "QPR is one of the best supported football clubs in the Championship ...home games averaging approximately 20,000, in the 2006/2007 season."]
2005/2006 - 13,440 (Holloway/Waddock)
2004/2005 - 16,055 (QPR's First back in the Championship after promotion)
2003/2004 - 14,784 (QPR Promotion Season)
2002/2003 - 13,206 (QPR Playoff Season) QPR Year-by-Year Attendances

January 9, 2008 - QPR Official Site - TOMMASI LEAVES
- Damiano Tommasi has had his contract terminated by mutual consent with immediate effect.
The 34-year-old midfielder joined the R's in September 2008 on a free transfer following his release from Spanish side Levante at the end of last season.
He made seven appearances for QPR in total, including two as a substitute.
Tommasi told www.qpr.co.uk: "I have enjoyed my time here very much but I understand football, and things change. This is normal.
"Now I have the opportunity to look for another team. I want to carry on playing - I'm not sure for how long - but I feel there is more in me to give.
"I have the enthusiasm to continue.
"I now consider myself to be a QPR fan and I believe the Club is capable of winning promotion.
"They have a strong squad, and I don't think we will have to wait too long before we see them playing in the Premier League."
The Club would like to place on record its thanks to Damiano for his contribution and wish him every success for the future."

QPR Official Site - September 12, 2008 EXCLUSIVE: ITALIAN MIDFIELDER SIGNS
- Queens Park Rangers Football Club is pleased to announce the signing of former Italian international midfielder Damiano Tommasi.
The 34 year-old has put pen to paper on a deal until the end of the 2008/09 campaign, after his release from Spanish side Levante at the end of last season.
Speaking to www.qpr.co.uk, R's boss Iain Dowie revealed his delight at the arrival of the experienced midfield general.
"The signing of Damiano adds great experience to the squad," he said.
"He'll compliment what Gavin Mahon and Martin Rowlands provide in that area.
"He has played at the highest level for Club and country and to have a player of that calibre available can only be good for QPR.
"We've got some fantastic young talent in the squad, such as (Emmanuel) Ledesma, (Angelo) Balanta, (Daniel) Parejo and (Hogan) Ephraim, and training with someone of Damiano's stature will be of huge benefit to them I'm sure.
"In the short term, he could prove to be very useful to us."
A player with outstanding experience, Tommasi began his career at Serie B side Hellas Verona, before moving to AS Roma, for whom he won the Scudetto Championship in 2001.
He made over 250 appearances for the Italian giants, but his ten-year spell at the Stadio Olimpico came to an end in 2006, when he joined Levante.
Prior to his release from the then La Liga outfit, he made just shy of 50 appearances, scoring one goal.
On the international stage, Tommasi was part of the Italian Under-21 side that triumphed in the 1996 European Championships.
The combative central midfielder has made 25 starts for the Azzurri national side and played in all four of Italy's matches in the 2002 World Cup.
Tommasi will wear the number 18 shirt.

January 9, 2008 - Mick Dennis/Daily Express - This is no Way to Go

FITZ HALL is an unlikely ­harbinger of revolution. The defender has played for six clubs without getting noticed for much other than his wonderful nickname – One Size.
But Hall has just joined his seventh club, Queens Park Rangers. They have signed seven other players in the first eight days of the transfer window and are starting to restructure the football landscape.
QPR fans gloat that their club is now the richest on the planet. Formula One tycoons Bernie Ecclestone and Flavio Briatore bought control in August. Last month, they flogged a fifth of the club to Lakshmi Mittal, the wealthiest person in the UK and the fifth richest in the world.
QPR lost the war of the wads with Roman Abramovich’s Chelsea in the FA Cup, and their January purchases have been of workmanlike players, such as Hall.
Yet everybody assumes that QPR will start to climb, and we are all waiting to see whether the new rulers intend to spend enough to establish the London club near the top of the Premier League. It is a prospect which is utterly alarming and deeply depressing. The QPR deal has reshaped football's landscape.
Rich owners are not a new development. English football was shaped by them. Edwardian factory owners, who wanted their works team to beat rival factory teams, lured better ­players by paying them. The ground rules were set – a rich man could try to make his team better than the rest.
But the stakes were raised when Abramovich flew over London, looked down at Stamford Bridge and, like Little Britain’s Andy, said: “Want that one.”
Abramovich’s example led the world’s super-rich to the Premier League and now they are moving into the Championship.
Queen’s Park Rangers have been a ­shabby, shoddy little outfit for decades. You can tell a lot about a club’s ethos by the way they treat away fans, and anyone who has huddled in the dank, decrepit away end at Loftus Road will tell you how much the club has been allowed to decay.
Yet QPR could now cruise out of the Football League because of an accident of geography – Loftus Road just happens to be quite handy for Mittal’s £57million home in Kensington Palace Gardens.
At other clubs folk toil away to pay bills on time, work hard to improve stadiums and strive to get the football right. On that treadmill, you have to run to stand still, and all that drives you is the hope that your ­manager might piece together a sequence of results which will bring some success.
The arrival of Ecclestone, Briatore and Mittal threatens to crush that hope.

And after the uproar, Mick Dennis did a pretty unusual thing: He responded to the criticisms of the article

Friday, January 11, 2008
Daily Express columnist, Mick Dennis wrote an article re QPR's new ownership "This is No Way to Go which elicited quite a bit of criticism on a number of QPR messageboards. Mick Dennis responded to one person who emailed him personally. Below is his response. Reprinted with permission of both the writer, Mick Dennis and the recipient.

From Mick Dennis
Subject: RE: 'This is no way to go'
Date: Thu, 10 Jan 2008
I have been deluged with responses and will point out in next Wednesday's column that the passion of QPR supporters does them proud -- and it's not their fault the club has been allowed to rot.

From Mick Dennis
Subject: RE: 'This is no way to go'
Date: Wed, 9 Jan 2008

I first went to QPR in the 1960s, when I was growing up in Hounslow. I used to go to all the West London clubs -- Brentford, Chelsea, Fulham and the R's as well as Hounslow Town, who were a decent amateur team. I did not support any of them, in the conventional sense, but I certainly wanted QPR to win when I was watching them. I used to stand behind the goal at the School End, and I joined in the chant of "Henry, Henry" in awed admiration of the great Terry Mancini.

In the 70s I began work as a journalist and my first job was on the Eastern Daily Press in Norfolk. I could only watch one club -- Norwich City. I became hooked, and although my route to supporting Norwich was unusual, I have been a fan ever since. When I got my first Fleet Street sports reporting job, in 1978, I moved to Hertfordshire. As well as visiting Loftus Road professionally quite often, I have taken my family there for the odd game when work has allowed and when we couldn't get to Norwich.
I have also managed to watch Norwich at your place several times in the last few years -- and yes, we've lost most of those game, but that is not why I came to view Rangers as a badly run club.
That began when, as deputy sports editor of the (London) Evening Standard, I conducted a survey of all the London clubs for ES Magazine. I took my two sons, who were both very young at the time, to every London ground for a match and looked at things like prices and facilities.
Despite feeling well-disposed to QPR, they came bottom of my survey. The unhelpful attitude of the stewards, the prices and quality of refreshments and the poor condition of the Ellerslie Road Stand were all factors, but the clincher was that the QPR match (against Liverpool) was the only time during the entire survey that my boys were frightened.
There was only one toilet we could access from the Ellerslie Road stand, and it only had one door -- for both in and out. My lads were crushed by the mob and both cried with fear. I wrote a private letter to the club about the issue of poor access to the toilet and received an astonishingly rude reply. I am sorry to say that I cannot remember what year that was, but it would have been about 89.
As I say, I have made several visits to the away end as a Norwich fan, and they have all been awful -- not because of the football (Norwich won some of them!) but because, although I have watched Norwich at more than 80 grounds, the QPR experience is among the worst.
The catering facilities are certainly among the worst. I'd say Port Vale are the only ones I have encountered where the staff care less and have worse equipment than at Loftus Road. On one visit, the kiosks were both shut until one, dispirited girl arrived ten minutes before kick-off and opened one. A huge queue formed. She fiddled about for a while and then announced: "Sorry, there's no hot water". Then she closed the kiosk again.
The School End stand IS dank. The area behind both the upper and lower tiers is completely enclosed by concrete and not properly ventilated. I've been dripped on by condensation (I hope it was condensation!) while queuing for the terribly inadequate refreshments. And, since the club was forced to put extra gangways into the seating to comply with safety requirements, there are odd dead-end arrangements and random bits of metal.

Professionally, I've had lots of dealings with QPR. I interviewed Chris Wright for the Standard when he was your chairman and, in response to my outlining some of the above to him, he said that Jim Gregory had put the stands up on the cheap and that there were all sorts of design faults.

John Gregory told me that, on his first day as manager, he was astonished to find a plank of wood, the sort you put on scaffolding, in the middle of the changing room floor at the training ground. When he asked what it was doing there, everyone just shrugged. It had been there for years, someone said. Gregory was definitely of the opinion that the club had been allowed to decay. That was his phrase.
All those accumulated experiences, plus the shambles of the gun episode, the blackmail allegations etc, led me to the view that, over the last couple of decades, QPR have become a shoddy little club. I don't expect you to agree.
Of course clubs in trouble welcome wealthy benefactors. As a Norwich fan, I am hugely appreciative of Delia Smith's efforts on our behalf. She rescued us from the brink of insolvency, but the super-rich backers (Like Abramovich and Mittal) are of an entirely different order. Abramovich's presence in the Premiership has been hugely inflationary, as other clubs have tried to keep in touch, and I think it is a terrible development if that trend is now going to spread to the Championship.
I picked my words carefully when I talked about those who "toiled to pay bills, worked hard to improve the stadiums and striven to get the football right". QPR did not always pay their bills. They went into administration, as a method of welching on debts. They did not work hard to improve the stadium. And now they are not trying to get the football right. They are just going to buy their way out of the division.
I understand your passion and it does you credit. I genuinely thank you for responding to my column.
Regards, Mick Dennis QPR Report

08 Jan 2010 -
Angelo Balanta has put pen to paper on a new deal which runs until the summer of 2012
The young forward, who has made 27 appearances in all competitions since making his debut for the Club in December 2007, has signed a two year extension at Loftus Road.
Speaking exclusively to www.qpr.co.uk, Balanta expressed his delight at signing the deal, commenting: "I'm absolutely delighted.
"My contract was due to run out at the end of the season, but this is where I want to play my football, so I couldn't be more pleased."
Injuries have largely interrupted the 19 year-old's season so far, but Balanta is determined to make his mark between now and the end of the campaign, adding: "It's been a frustrating season, but I'm back fit now and really looking forward to playing my part.
"I feel really sharp and hopefully I can make an impact during the second half of the season." QPR

- Holloway Rules Out Burnley Move

- Death of QPR Fan, Bill Duffin

"Alec Stock masterminded our rise from the Third Division to the top flight, picking up a League Cup win along the way. We tell the story of his magnificent Rangers career through the people that lived it with him - fans, players and his family."

- Next (Hopefully!): Plymouth
TTV Team News: Italian forward Alessandro Pellicori, who has started just one match all season, is back in training after a virus." (So obviously at least as of now, not signed for Italian club Mantova)

- Andrew Davies/Planet F1 "Flavio: Quit While You're Ahead"

- Caleb Folan's Linked to QPR Under Dowie and Sousa

- Flashback: Three years ago, Egutu Olisheh Departed

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