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Wednesday, April 27, 2011

QPR Report Wednesday Snippets: Flashback: Sean Connery at Loftus Road...Taarabt Makes Championship Team of the Week

- 1967 Flashback: Alec Stock Writes about the 1967/68 Pre-Season Trip to Spain!(Photos/Text:Courtesy "Bushman")
- Throughout the day, updates, comments and perspectives re QPR and football in general are posted and discussed on the QPR Report Messageboard...Also Follow: QPR REPORT ON TWITTER

- Adel Taarabt Makes Championship Team of the Week

- On This Day Flashbacks: Fifteen Years Ago, QPR's Last Home Game in the Premiership...Year Flashback: Clint Hill Joining QPR

- Several Stories re Bernie Ecclestone Being Prepared to Sell QPR. And the Purchase option for Flavio Briatore

- Not yet Announced by the Club: But Miller has returned to WBA and Vine has returned to QPR.

- Non-League Mertham Deducted a point for fielding unregistered player

- Playoff Dates Information! (Hopefully Non-QPR!)

- Ex-QPR Simon Walton Claims the Winner/Fitting in at Plymouth

- Flashback: QPR Interest in (now Norwich hero) Simeon Jackson

- Sports Minister Slams Running of English Football

- League Groundsmen Awards

- Oxford United Join Port Vale in Coming to North America this Summer

(Photo thanks to Bushman)

Long-time QPR Club Secretary, Ron Phillips (having solved the "Missing Apostrophe" Question: "How Queen's Park Rangers became Queens Park Rangers").... offers further memories re his time at QPR

Standard - Neil Warnock will have to spend big when QPR join the elite - Julian Bennetts
26 Apr 2011

Thousands of Queens Park Rangers fans flooded the pitch after the 1-1 draw with Hull blissfully unaware that their promotion party was about to be ruined.

Simeon Jackson's 96th-minute winner for Norwich against Derby means QPR still need a point to be guaranteed of a return to the Premier League after an absence of 15 years.

Even if Rangers fail to get that point against Watford or Leeds, the fact their goal difference is 13 better than third-placed Cardiff means it shouldn't be too long before the fans can re-start the party.

The problem, though, is that yesterday's game encapsulated the fact that Neil Warnock has built a team to thrive in the Championship, yet one that would surely be relegated in the top flight. An overhaul is needed.

That is not to denigrate the current group of players but they are a unit designed to seal the seventh promotion of Warnock's career, something they are almost certain to do. The club are confident they will not be docked points for their controversial signing of Alejandro Faurlin although the Football Association will not announce their decision until the day before the Leeds match.

And despite seven of yesterday's starting XI having Premier League experience, only one - goalkeeper Paddy Kenny - could be argued to have shown his best form in the top flight. The remainder of this side are the waifs and strays, the players that haven't quite cut it with Tottenham or Aston Villa, say, but are too good for the Championship.

Indeed, out of the current team, the case could be put that only three - Kenny, Adel Taarabt and Faurlin - are likely to adapt relatively seamlessly to the top flight.

So it will be comforting to Warnock that Lakshmi Mittal - the world's fifth-richest man - told Standard Sport last week that he would invest in the squad this summer were they to go up.

Indeed, as Mittal and Flavio Briatore, the Formula One magnate who started QPR on their road to the Premier League nearly four years ago, acknowledged the crowd from the directors' box, it was easy to think that promotion is long overdue for Rangers.

This club have, after all, been punching below their weight since the sudden influx of cash in August 2007. The interference from above, specifically from Briatore, hardly helped, and it is no coincidence that the situation has improved since the Italian took a step back at the same time as Warnock was appointed last March.

In the 30 months before that Rangers had seven permanent managers, four caretakers and had made more than 90 transfers. Warnock has since been allowed to do as he sees fit, but the real test of the former Sheffield United manager comes now. In short, now that he has money to spend, there can be no excuses if Warnock fails to keep QPR up next season.

When Sheffield United were promoted, Warnock spent £11.5million on players such as Claude Davis, Ahmed Fathi and Luton Shelton. Better quality purchases are now required, and the upcoming season could define both Warnock's career and the big-money QPR experiment. Ultimately, the squad are likely to be barely recognisable from the one that played yesterday.

And after their poor second-half display, that is understandable.

Wayne Routledge - a man who Rangers are likely to sign despite his record of one goal in 99 Premier League games for six clubs - opened the scoring after just eight minutes, racing on to Taarabt's through-ball and firing smartly past Matt Duke.

Yet the hosts retreated as the second-half wore on, and they were punished when substitute David Amoo raced on to a loose ball and fired smartly past Kenny. It was a poor goal to give away, and an indication of how much has to be done before next season.

Rangers will go up but a lot needs to be done if they are going to stay up. Standard

- Tiger Feet Sponsored Walk to Watford

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