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Wednesday, August 10, 2011

QPR Report Wednesday: Warnock Speaks...Murphy Joins QPR...Season Previews...Bolton Game in Question...Another Trialist Goalie...QPR XI Beat Reading

- For Further details: See Bushman's QPR History: QPR in the Southern League, 1911/12
- Throughout the day, the QPR Report Messageboard has news updates, comments and perspectives - even links to other board comments of interest re QPR matters (on and off the field) along with football (and ONLY football) topics in general....Also Follow: QPR REPORT ON TWITTER

- Whether Saturday's games will actually be played remains unclear (and very possibly doubtful!). The club Shop shut early yesterday because of the disturbances.

- Vine going out on Loan Again? (Vine Tweeting)

- Premiership Attendance Stats: With QPR's Stadium Capacity - QPR will be near or at the bottom.

QPR Official Site - Premier League & Football League statement
- The Premier League and Football League are saddened by the recent incidents of civil unrest and the effect it is having on local communities.
- We are in on-going discussions with our London-based Clubs, the Metropolitan Police and statutory authorities in regard to the staging of the coming weekend's fixtures in the capital.
- The Metropolitan Police has conveyed to us the dynamic nature of the current situation and with that in mind all parties will review the situation on Thursday and make a further public statement at that time.
- With the information currently available to us there is no reason to think any matches outside of London will be affected.
We are conscious of the need to keep fans informed of any developments and will, of course, keep them as up-to-date as possible through Club, league and media channels

- Mackie Injury Update: No Date Set for Return

- Four Year Flashback: Ecclestone and Briatore Set to Buy QPR

- Forty-Three Year Flashback: QPR's First-Ever Game in the Top Flight

- Year Flashback: "Shock" Home Defeat for QPR in the Carling Cup First Round!

- Reading's Shane Long Joins WBA

- Atalanta Points Deduction confirmed

EVENING STANDARD/Simon Johnson - Neil Warnock interview

Second chance: Neil Warnock is relishing another crack at the big time

Neil Warnock: I've always been driven to prove my critics wrong

Neil Warnock has waited four long years for another crack at the Premier League yet if the bookies are to be believed his second taste of it is going to be very short.

His club, Queens Park Rangers, are not only one of the firm favourites to be relegated this season, but he is also leading the betting to become the next top-flight manager to be sacked.

Instead of being disconcerted at being the subject of such pessimistic predictions, the 62-year-old, not for the first time in his career, is determined to upset the odds.

Meeting him at the club's training ground in Harlington just a few days before the club's opening match at home against Bolton on Saturday, Warnock is looking like a man wanting to rise to the challenge, not one resigned to an early exit.

"I have always been driven by that motivation to prove people wrong," he tells me. "I have been looking forward to my first day back in the Premier League since I was relegated with Sheffield United in 2007 and I want to make the most of this chance.

"I'm really buzzing. It's easy when you're 3-1 with the bookies to get the sack and everyone is making us favourites to go down.

"I've asked the bookies for the odds of me not getting the sack and QPR staying up. They haven't got back to me yet, but it will be a good bet for someone because I intend to do it.

"I've already got bigger ambitions than just staying up for one season. You don't know what will happen at any club, but I am very pleased with the players I have.

"I look at Saturday's opponents, Bolton, and they are the type of club we are looking to emulate. They have been in the Premier League, stayed there and built on it. If we can match their success the future is good."

The seeds of Warnock's overwhelming enthusiasm stems from the knowledge that his first flirtation with the Premier League almost made him quit the sport he loves altogether.

No one was left more heartbroken or disillusioned when Sheffield United went down on the final day of 2006-07 campaign.

It was one of the most controversial seasons in the Premier League's history for West Ham, who had been found guilty of breaking rules over the signature of Carlos Tevez and Javier Mascherano, stayed up at their expense.

Not only that, but another relegation rival, Fulham, benefited from Rafael Benitez's decision to play an understrength Liverpool side at Craven Cottage, even though their Champions League Final against AC Milan was 18 days away. Fulham won the game 1-0.

Despite the amount of misfortune, Sheffield United chairman Kevin McCabe and a minority of the club's fans blamed Warnock for their demise and he resigned, thinking he would never work in the game again.

It all seems a long time ago having guided QPR to an impressive first place in the Championship last season, but it was actually a tough stint in charge of London rivals Crystal Palace in between which reignited his passion.

He explains: "When Sheffield United were relegated, I was at the lowest I have ever been. I felt let down by a lot of people.

"I always say be careful what you wish for. I think the same when I hear Arsenal fans on the radio moaning about Arsene Wenger. I took it into consideration when I heard some of the Sheffield United fans and look where they are now.

"The best thing that ever happened to me was when Simon Jordan convinced me to move to Palace later that year. If Simon hadn't brought me in I would have packed it in. It put things in perspective.

"It was great to put smiles back on peoples faces and get pride back in that club.

"We turned it around and were very close to going up in 2008, when we were beaten in the play-offs. The financial situation began to take its toll, we went into administration and I ended up leaving. I just wanted one more opportunity with a club where I could have enough support to get promotion and finish at the top."

That club was QPR, and even though he has had a small budget to spend on players, he has turned them from relegation candidates in the Championship at the start of 2010 to preparing for their first Premier League game in 15 years. Such a dramatic climb with limited resources is one of the reasons why they are so fancied for the drop. So far their summer spending has seen them make three free transfers in Jay Bothroyd, Kieron Dyer and Danny Gabbidon, with their one big purchase being DJ Campbell from Blackpool for £1.25million.

Still, Warnock is confident his second crack at the elite will prove more successful than the first and says: "We're going to be underdogs everywhere we go and I think it's great.

"I won't get as many nerves an hour before kick off because no one will expect us to win.

"I think we have some good players, ones like Kieron and Danny who like me have a point to prove and are driven to be successful in their own way.

"I'm not afraid and I have drummed that into my players. We have to enjoy and savour this. Loftus Road is made for unpredictable results.

"The great challenge is the games against the top sides. I'd love to beat a Chelsea, Manchester United or Arsenal this year.

"Blackpool did us a big favour last season. I know they got relegated but they went everywhere to win the game and not worry about losing big. I thought they were a breath of fresh air and I learnt from that."

Even though Warnock has spent the majority of his managerial career outside the first tier of English football, most football fans in the country have come to regard him as a figure they either love or hate.

His desire to speak his mind has upset many football personnel and the authorities in the past, yet he feels the tide could be turning in his autumn years. There is only one individual he will go into this season fearing, and that's his wife, Sharon.

He adds: "I don't tend to get too many Christmas cards off other managers. I used to get one from Sir Alex Ferguson - until I criticised him for playing a weakened team against West Ham with Tevez on the final day of the 2007 season.

"But there are a lot of people I meet across football who actually say thank you for saying things they'd like to say. I think I'm more the ordinary chap in the street rather than the Rolex watch manager. I'm sure now we are the underdogs people will be rooting for me more, a bit like Blackpool last season.

"Obviously I have to be careful about what I say this season, if nothing else because of my wife. She goes mad about the fines and I'm more worried about her telling me off than the football authorities."

Of course there is a danger that his big day may have to wait because of the serious threat the match will have to be postponed because of the riots which have plagued London the past few days.

Naturally it is another setback he is prepared to take on the chin.

He concludes: "It just seems nothing is straightforward with me. We won the Championship last season but didn't know until midday on the final day if we were going up because the threat of a points deduction over the transfer of Alejandro Faurlin.

"We didn't even have a party to celebrate and now we have all this going on in London this week.

"Still, the safety of people must come first so we will just have to go along with it."

Even if the match doesn't go ahead, Warnock and his team will provide a lot of entertainment this season. You can bet on it. Standard


BBC: Premiership Club-by-Club Season Preview
Queens Park Rangers QPR:

2010-11 season

Championship: 1st

FA Cup: Third round

Carling Cup: First round

Players in: DJ Campbell (Blackpool) £1.2m*, Kieron Dyer (free agent), Danny Gabbidon (free agent), Jay Bothroyd (free agent)

Players out: Mikele Leigertwood (Reading), Peter Ramage (Crystal Palace) Loan, Lee Brown (Bristol Rovers), Angelo Balanta (MK Dons) Loan, Joe Oastler (Torquay), Max Ehmer (Yeovil) Loan

Summer so far:

* QPR confirmed that they have begun talks with potential new owners.
* The club blocked the possible sale of Moroccan playmaker Adel Taarabt, who had held talks with Paris Saint-German earlier in the summer.

* Striker Heidar Helguson signs a new one-year contract at Loftus Road, while eight players, including Pascal Chimbonda, Gavin Mahon and Georgias Tofas, were released..

Key fixtures:

* Local derbies against West London rivals Chelsea resume for the first time since 1996 with the Blues visiting Loftus Road on 23 October. The return fixture is on 28 April.
* Home matches against Liverpool and Arsenal on 17 and 31 March are followed by a trip to Manchester United on 7 April.

Full QPR fixture list

BBC London'sNick Godwin:

"QPR fans are delighted that Adel Taraabt looks set to stay. He held defences spellbound in the Championship last season and many are looking forward to what he can achieve at a higher level.

"Neil Warnock has added Keiron Dyer and Danny Gabbidon. Both useful players on their day, but their fitness will be key.

"Jay Bothroyd and DJ Campbell should provide quality and goals and Campbell will be desperate to prove that last season's efforts with Blackpool were not a one-off.

"Warnock too will be itching for another crack after Sheffield United, Carlos Tevez and all that.

"But as long as takeover negotiations continue, uncertainty will pervade Loftus Road. Their resolution, more than anything else, may well decide whether this is the start of another long residency at football's top table, or just a fleeting visit."

Read between the lines, and lets all hold our breath for QPR. BBC


QPR transfer news 2011/12: Mid-window report card and grade
At the halfway stage of the summer transfer window, Queens Park Rangers blog QPR Report gives Metro Sport his views on all the ins and outs at Loftus Road so far.

Queens Park Rangers Team: Queens Park Rangers line-up before their match against Braga (Getty Images)

How do you rate your signings so far?

Attempting to assess Neil Warnock's transfer activities unfortunately doesn't have a great deal of relevance to what is occurring (or not occurring) at QPR these days!

It is not the manager who is the problem.

It is the billionaire owners Bernie Ecclestone, and especially Flavio Briatore, who have ensured that Warnock has to prepare to fight for Premier League survival with one hand tied behind his back.

QPR's incoming transfers have consisted of Jay Bothroyd from Cardiff City, and two, over-thirty players, with problematic injury records in the form of Kieron Dyer and Danny Gabbidon.

There seems a fair possibility that a couple of other 'cheap' signings will be made. But nothing on the scale of what is reasonable given the influx of Premier League money to the club.

How do you rate your player sales so far?

We have a lot of deadwood in our squad that we've had for some time.

Unfortunately several players, signed by several managers before Warnock, arrived at QPR and were given lengthy, well paid contracts with salaries that they could not match elsewhere.

Has your confidence in your manager's ability in the transfer market increased or decreased since the summer window opened?

Fan confidence in the manager remains absolute.

With his free transfer signings, he's hopefully making bricks out of straws.

But fans views about the Premier League prospects have steadily declined since the end of last season.

The expectations is that Warnock will either walk or be axed.

Probably very few expect him to be in charge of QPR by the end of the season. Metro

Posted on: Wed 10 Aug 2011

Former Ipswich Town goalkeeper Brian Murphy has penned a two-year deal at Loftus Road.

The 28 year-old custodian, who has impressed whilst on trial during pre-season, will provide competition for current number one Paddy Kenny and experienced shot-stopper Radek Cerny.

Neil Warnock has made no secret of his desire to have three senior goalkeepers to select from this season and the R's gaffer commented: "I am delighted. You need three senior keepers for the Premier League and we've got that now.

"Brian has had a super couple of weeks with us and was instrumental in us winning the Cup in Italy.

"He is a very capable understudy to Paddy, so him and Radek will offer great competition for the coming season.

"It was great to be able to have a good look at him before he signed. He fitted in so well with the rest of the squad during pre-season, and I could tell within two days that he was the one for us.

"His attitude is first class and he's got great mobility. He's got everything that we need."

Speaking exclusively to www.qpr.co.uk, Murphy - who will wear the number 26 shirt - added: "It is great to be here. I am really looking forward to the new season and working with the goalkeepers.

"Since I have been here I have enjoyed it, and I think I have done okay. The Manager and the coaching staff seem pleased so I am just delighted to have my future sorted out.

"I am here to work hard, and anything extra will be a bonus. I want to be in that 18-man squad every week, but I know every player here wants the same thing.

"It is going to be a massive season for the Club and one that I am looking forward to being a part of." QPR

On Trial at QPR:
9/08/2011 by David McIntyre West London Sport

- QPR have handed a trial to Australian goalkeeper Aaron Lennox.
- The 18-year-old is currently with the Australian Institute of Sport, which also produced former R’s full-back Andrew McDermott.
- Lennox, who has represented his country at youth level, was closely watched by Tottenham before joining AIS from Sydney United. West London Sport

Yesterday's QPR Announcement re Kit "Unveiling"

- The R's new home kit for the 2011/12 Barclays Premier League campaign will be revealed exclusively in your 'Hoops' matchday programme this Saturday.
- The new-look 84-page publication, complete with a perfect-bound matt laminate finish, will include exclusive images of the new kit, as modeled by a handful of the QPR First Team squad.
- Neil Warnock's men will be wearing the new home kit against Bolton Wanderers on Saturday afternoon, as Premier League football returns to Loftus Road for the first time in 15 years.
- *We are aware some Cads of the new kits have been leaked on the internet, but would encourage our supporters to buy the matchday programme - priced at just £3 - to see the Official images. QPR

- For those who missed it this weeekend: QPR's New Shirts "Revealed" and the Rodney Marsh QPR Controversy (Banning Claim)!

- Lotto's Other Clubs/Shirts

- Reported QPR Bid for Egyptian Winger

- QPR Report Poll Question: Will QPR's Promised "Pre-Season Celebration" Be Held?

And along the same lines: - VANISHED WITHOUT NOTICE! The Club's Official Messageboard

- Still No QPR Offical Site Update re the Status of the Official Supporters Club (OSC). Despite Committee Resignations.

- Bookies and Pundits Favour QPR for Relegation

- Press Versus Football Clubs Dispute. Lock Out

- An Early Preview of QPR vs Bolton

- A Statistical Guide to Points Needed to Stay Up

- Seventy Years of Supporting QPR: A Longtime QPR Supporter Remembers

- Some Great Old QPR Videos: QPR's 1975/76 "Championship" Season Final Game vs Leeds + Some Videos From Early 1990s

- Flashback: "40 Factoids About QPR"

- "Spot The Ball"

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