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Wednesday, February 15, 2012

QPR Report Wednesday: Team Settling in Portugal...Cisse Profiled...Everton Tickets...Five Year Flashback: The CRAZY World of QPR

- On This Day: Roger Morgan Makes His Tottenham Debut - After Signing from QPR (from the Bushman Photo Archives)

- QPR REPORT MESSAGEBOARD - Visit the cutting-edge, football-only, QPR Report messageboard

- Visit the truly-fascinating Bushman QPR Photo Archives

- FIve Year Flashback: "The Crazy World of QPR"..."Brushes With the Law"...Statement from Life President Harold Winton (RIP)

The National/Ian Hawkey - Tumultuous times follow Djibril Cisse

Djibril Cisse's latest reacquaintance with the Premier League has been dramatic so far.


■ Tale of two Cisses in Premier League
■ Arsene Wenger confident of top four finish, Cisse scores on QPR debut
■ Djibril Cisse's Italian renaissance
Topic Football Queens Park Rangers Football columns English Premier League football teams Footballers

In his two outings since joining Queens Park Rangers, the third of his English employers and the seventh club of the 30-year-old Frenchman's career, he has displayed twin aspects of himself: Cisse the talented and Cisse the touchy.

A determination to hit the ground running, to make an instant impact is pure Cisse.

He scored on his QPR debut, at Aston Villa, barely 48 hours after signing from Lazio at the end of the January transfer window. Deja vu.

He had netted on his first Premier League contest for Liverpool, seven seasons ago; at the start of the 2008/09 campaign, he scored on the first match of his stint with Sunderland.

His second QPR game would reveal the prickly side, though, a red card after he responded aggressively to a late, bad tackle from Wolverhampton Wanderers' Roger Johnson.

Johnson had touched a raw nerve. Cisse, 30, has twice suffered broken legs at key points in his career.

In his mind, Johnson's challenge had put him at risk of another.

He will complete his three match suspension later this month, when Cisse's principal target - and he has made no secret of it - is to perform well and decisively enough for QPR to earn himself a place in France's Euro 2012 squad.

Many compatriots hope he does. Over the course of a decade, Cisse has become popular with compatriots and France managers for his strong work ethic as well as his assets as a striker.

"He worries defenders with his strength and his pace," Mark Hughes, the QPR manager, said.

Laurent Blanc, the current France head coach, lauds "his constant enthusiasm for representing his country".

Cisse, the son of an Ivory Coast international, could have played for the West African nation or for France, where he was born. Since choosing Les Bleus, his commitment has been total.

Blanc recalled Cisse to a French squad at the beginning of the season, after an absence that had lasted since the 2010 World Cup. It was his umpteenth comeback.

Yet bad luck has punctuated his international career.

Ahead of the 2004 European Championship, Cisse, who was earmarked for a place in the national squad but still young enough to represent the Under 21s, was picked to appear in the under-age side for an important game against Portugal.

He was fouled and reacted petulantly, picking up a ban that would cost him a place in the senior tournament.

Days before the 2006 World Cup, he had his leg broken in a friendly against China. He would play no part in France's march to the final in Berlin.

Ahead of Euro 2008, he would be among seven players on the shortlist who did not make the cut for the 23-man party that went to Austria and Switzerland.

That's not all. His first broken leg had already interrupted a promising start to his career at Liverpool in the 2004/05 season.

He suffered it at Blackburn Rovers in the late autumn of his first season at Anfield, a routine-looking collision but with a grim verdict once the extent of the wound was diagnosed.

"The doctor said to me I would be out until the next season," Cisse recently told L'Equipe, the French newspaper.

He remembers proudly how he was playing again by the February, four months after the injury had been sustained, and would contribute to the scarcely credible denouement to Liverpool's season, victory in the Champions League final against AC Milan, from 3-0 down, via a penalty shoot-out.

The comeback kid had been part of one of the most engaging comebacks in modern football.

If, during his time at Liverpool, something of what Cisse calls his "battling character, something I was born with" emerged, so did his touchiness.

Cisse was clearly agitated towards the close of the summer 2005 transfer window, when Liverpool fans were pressing for the return to the club of Michael Owen, Rafa Benitez, the head coach, was favouring his Spanish compatriot striker Fernando Morientes and Peter Crouch had been unveiled as a new recruit.

Although Cisse would hit 14 goals in 19 Premier League starts over the next 10 months, he then left Liverpool for Olympique Marseille.

Benitez had not been the sort of warm, arm-around-the-shoulder coach Cisse had known as a teenager at Auxerre, where the long-serving Guy Roux was, and has remained, a mentor.

Unusually among France players of the last six or seven years, Cisse also had a good relationship with Raymond Domenech, who oversaw France's disastrous 2010 World Cup campaign.

In a tense dressing-room, the striker provided moments of cheer.

"Djib always creates a good atmosphere," his friend Thierry Henry said of Cisse, whose love of music and very obvious interest in body decoration, be it his tattoos or his ever-changing coiffeur, identifies him as a sort who likes a little attention.

His target over the next three months will be to gain the close, keen attention of Blanc.

Cisse joined Lazio last August because he thought goals in Serie A would be valued by the France head coach more than the ones he had been scoring regularly for Panathinaikos in Greece.

When the goals dried up in Rome, he leapt at his invitation from London. The National



Posted on: Wed 15 Feb 2012

Mark Hughes, his Management team and the QPR squad arrived at the Amendoeira Resort in Portugal just after 3pm this afternoon and were immediately impressed by the facilities awaiting them.

Shortly after checking-in, Hughes headed straight off to check out the training pitches which will be the squad's base for the next five days.

And once the evening meal was out of the way, the vast majority of the squad settled down together in the lounge area to watch Barcelona's Champions League clash at Bayer Leverkusen on the big screen.

After the final whistle (Barca won 3-1 if you're interested!), the squad retired to their rooms in preparation for an early start and a demanding first training session.

Hughes's assistant, Mark Bowen, has been pleased with what he has seen so far as the Management staff do all they can to prepare the R's for our final 13 games of the season.

"The first impression since we've arrived is that this is an excellent training camp," Bowen told www.qpr.co.uk.

"The facilities are fantastic and we've had a look at the pitches and they look very good as well."

With the FA Cup fifth round taking place this weekend, QPR had a two-week gap in fixtures and have used the break to whisk the team away. Bowen explains why.

"It's a great time to come away for two reasons," he said.

"Firstly it gives us the opportunity to play on good services [sic] at a time when the Harlington pitches are frozen, and it also allows us the chance to go through a lot of tactical bits and pieces with the players.

"There are things that we want to address coming on the back of last weekend's result against Blackburn.

"The Manager said afterwards, and rightly so, that the first 45 minutes was a shock to all of us with how poorly we played.

"We didn't expect that because we thought we had prepared the lads well in terms of what we expected of them.

"But we finished the game very well and the stats from the second half showed that.

"Over the course of this week we will learn more about the players and the players will learn more about us.

"And with the new lads coming in, it means they can get used to their team-mates more and get involved in the group more.

"Samba Diakite is joining us tomorrow (Wednesday) and it's also a chance for him to get to know everybody.

"So this trip ticks a lot of boxes for us. It is something we have done at other Clubs we have been at.

"I don't like to speak too soon but whenever we have done this in the past we have always had positive results on the back of it when we return. Hopefully that will continue."

The players will be woken at 8am tomorrow for breakfast before JOGGING to the training pitches on the complex, but Bowen believes the squad welcome such a disciplined approach - despite what they may say!

"Regardless of their moans and groans we have always found that top professional footballers want structure," he added.

"They like things to be well organised, and getting them all up to have breakfast together is just a small part of that.

"We have got a day's work ahead of us and waking them up early is a way to show them that we are out here for a reason.

"This time together gives us the opportunity to do the subtle things away from the pitch that you don't have the chance to do back home.

"At Harlington, the players tend to finish training, shower, change and they're out of the building.

"In this situation it means we can have little chats here and there, and pick players' brains to get their thoughts on things as well.

"What we are doing is a tried and trusted formula. We have had success with this before and this is our opportunity to do good work on and off the training ground.

"We are here to work hard so that we return to England as a better squad and a better team." QPR


Ian Cooper/London 24 QPR striker ruled out for up to six weeks

Campbell’s nightmare season continues as hamstring tear keeps him out for at least a month

DJ Campbell is facing up to six weeks on the sidelines after tearing a hamstring in training.

The Rangers forward, who has been restricted to just 11 appearances this season thanks to injury and illness, pulled up in training ahead of QPRs match at Blackburn Rovers on Saturday.

Campbell was in the latter stages of his rehabilitation from a hamstring strain suffered in the match against Wigan Athletic last month, and admitted his latest injury comes as a massive setback.

"It's a grade two tear so I'm looking at four to six weeks," Campbell told London24.com. "It has been one thing after another but I just have to try to get on with it.

"Hopefully if I can do my rehab a bit better this time then it will be okay.

"It's frustrating but it happens, it's been like that all season. I was on the last day of my rehab and it went again. I've had a few injections on it, so were hoping that might get me back a bit sooner." London 24

Everton Official Site - QPR Ticket Explanation

Tuesday 14th February 2012 20:06@YourEverton
Everton officials clarify decision to accept reduced allocation.

Everton officials have clarified the chain of events that led to the decision to take a 1700 allocation of tickets for the away trip to Queens Park Rangers next month.

The Blues travel to Loftus Road on 3 March and following discussions with QPR were offered two ticket options for travelling supporters – either 1700 or 3000 tickets on a guaranteed sale only basis.

Everton suggested a revised sales figure of between 1700 and 3000 and also proposed that sales above the agreed figure could be on a sale or return basis. This was rejected by Rangers.

A club spokesman said: "Following various discussions between the two clubs and taking into account QPR’s adult ticket price of £40/45, we have opted to take what we feel is the most prudent allocation of 1700 tickets.

"We are disappointed that more Evertonians will not be down in the capital city next month cheering on the team, and whilst we tried to negotiate different terms with Queens Park Rangers, we accept and respect their decision."

The news of the reduced allocation will have a knock on effect on all allocations, which will be amended accordingly. If any supporters have any queries, then please do not hesitate to contact the Box Office at everton@evertonfc.com or on 0871 663 1878. http://www.evertonfc.com/news/archive/2012/02/14/qpr-ticket-explanation

SKY - Serrant staying with QPR
Fitness coach remains part of manager Hughes' plans
By Soriebah Kajue

Sky Sports understands Mark Hughes has handed fitness coach Carl Serrant a permanent position on his QPR coaching staff after a glowing reference from the players.

The 36-year-old former Newcastle defender, who saw his own career cut short by injury, was employed in a similar role by previous boss Neil Warnock.
There had been concerns over his future after Hughes arrived at Loftus Road last month with his trusted backroom staff of Mark Bowen, Eddie Niedzwiecki and Kevin Hitchcock.

Serrant was unsure whether he would be amalgamated into the new regime after Keith Curle and Mick Jones left with Warnock, while other members of the backroom team were left to sweat on their futures.

However, he was given glowing references by the club's current playing squad which was also taken into account by Hughes in making his decision.

The Rs boss is expected to take a view on other coaching positions at Loftus Road at the end of the season. Sky

- Past QPR Managerial Appointments: Where Came From

- The Premiership Compared to Other European Leagues

- VIDEO Flashbacks including Extensive video of QPR's 1975-76 Finale vs Leeds United (Goal appropriately from Dave Thomas and Stan Bowles!). Also Andy McCulloch's Debut Goal for QPR

- Flashbacks: QPR Off to Portugal....QPR Assistant Manager Arrested....QPR Deny John Gregory to be New Manager..QPR Youth Team lose in Palermo Tournament. QPR Youth Coach Axed..."We Are QPR"

- Change at QPR Holdings...New Name Associated with the Mittals, Sudhir Maheshwari appointed

- "Must Watch" VIDEO! Highlights of London Football 1968-1989, including of course some QPR moments. NOT previously available on Video: One of the famed QPR Terry Venables/Gerry Francis Free Kicks of the early 1970s (15 minutes into video].......Part II of the Video: London Football 1968-1989

- Remaining Fixtures: Bottom Six Clubs

- Armel Tchakounte Update

- Football Aid 2012 – Play at Loftus Road. And Help Charity!

- QPR and the Other 19 Premiership Clubs Sign Sports Charter Against Homophobia (Don't think been a separate QPR Announcement re this)

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