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Friday, March 23, 2012

QPR Report Friday: Next Sunderland...QPR Going East?...Joey Barton...Rowan Vine...Flashback to Rodney Marsh and Mike Keen



- QPR REPORT MESSAGEBOARD - Visit the cutting-edge, football-only, QPR Report messageboard (and see items you won't usually read elsewhere
- Visit the truly-fascinating Bushman QPR Photo Archives

- Next: Sunderland - Shared Players/Past Results & Reports

- Ex-QPR Richard Langley Blogs about the Liverpool game and re Joey Barton

- Three Year Flashback: Briatore on Sousa - Will Decide at End of Season!

- Birthdays for Garry Penrice and Robbie James (RIP)

JACOB MURTAGH/FULHAM CHRONICLE - QPR reveal plans for pre-season tour to Far East
- QPR have revealed plans for a money-spinning pre-season tour to the Far East – even if they get relegated.
- Malaysian chairman Tony Fernandes is keen for the club to branch out to Asia, which will see the Rs play a series of warm-up games ahead of the beginning of next season.
- QPR's Premier League survival hopes were given a major boost with Wednesday night's midweek win over Liverpool.
- And boss Mark Hughes confirmed the club will press ahead with the trip even if they're preparing for life in the Championship.
- He told the Chronicle: “There’s already plans to do a Far East tour. That’s pretty much in place and will be confirmed in the next few weeks.
- “We’re getting on with the business. Where? Malaysia and Bangkok I believe. You’ve got to arrange that sort of thing no matter what else is going on.” Fulham Chronicle

- Nostalgia Flashback: 44 Years Ago, Promotion-chasing QPR defeat Rivals Blackpool (End of Season were promoted over Blackpool on goal aggregate) - Journalist Geoffrey Greene on Rodney Marsh and Mike Keen
"...As for Marsh himself he remains the individualist and the entertainer he will always be. Hooked up a number of times in full artistic flow he always managed to turn the ire of others to laughter in the fluent manner of his falling. He should be a tumbler or a clown in a circus.
Let as a footballer he is no clown. He may not suit the planners or those who worship method. But he makes the crowd purr and it was now only the howling gale, two great saves by Taylor and those illegal last ditch obstructions that kept him out of the score line.
"But if Marsh raises the cry of "Rod-ney, Rod-ney!" from the terraces, the steady pulse of this Rangers` side beats in their captain, Keen. Unhurried, long legged, deep thinking and one-paced not unlike Crerand, of Manchester United - he prods his men on week after week from no man`s land. Quiet but keen, he is well named."

- Bournemouth Football Club Ban the Local Newspaper

Guardian/Paul Doyle

QPR team-mates back Joey Barton as the fans turn against him

Midfielder admits he played badly against Liverpool
Mark Hughes backs him despite loss of form

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Paul Doyle
guardian.co.uk, Thursday 22 March 2012 18.30 EDT
Article history

Joey Barton was substituted in the rousing 3-2 win over Liverpool. Photograph: Clive Rose/Getty Images
The Queens Park Rangers forward Jamie Mackie has backed Joey Barton to overcome the ridicule heaped on him by the club's supporters during Wednesday's 3-2 victory over Liverpool.

Although that match ended in euphoria for the home crowd, their mood was very different in the 62nd minute, when the hosts were trailing 1-0 and Barton was substituted by Mackie. Barton was booed off the pitch by large sections of the Loftus Road faithful, who were evidently dissatisfied with the captain's error-strewn performance.

"You don't like to see that but Joey's an immensely strong character so I don't think we need to worry about it," said Mackie. "He's our captain, our leader. He never hides, whether he's having a good or a bad game. He's probably got a bigger part to play than anyone [in QPR's fight against relegation]. He wants us to win games whether he is banging the goals in or not and we are lucky to have him."

Barton later took to Twitter to confess that his display had been "awful" and "the worst of my career" but criticised the home fans for turning on him. It is worth wondering whether his prolific use of Twitter intensifies the scorn directed at him when he plays badly, as his willingness to expound his views on a whole array of subjects seems to encourage others to voice their views of him.

It is also likely that supporters feel justified in demanding more from him because he has described himself as one of England's best midfielders and because, if the brags that the Wolverhampton Wanderers midfielder Karl Henry claims Barton made during QPR's win over Wolves in September are accurate, he is one of the highest-paid players at the club, earning �80,000-per-week.

Yet another motive for the booing could have been to convey a message to the club's manager, Mark Hughes, who has consistently picked Barton despite a series of inconsequential performances. The player hinted on Twitter that his form has been compromised by having to occasionally play on the right-hand side of midfield rather than in the centre but that position is scarcely alien enough to convince fans that it qualifies as a reasonable excuse for mislaying as many passes as he did against Liverpool.

Nor was it only against Liverpool that he has struggled. Barton's form has been poor ever since he got sent off in January's 2-1 defeat by Norwich City, yet he has continually been chosen ahead of the likes of Mackie, Shaun Wright-Phillips and Akos Buzsaky. A significant number of Rangers fans seem to think Hughes should alter this selection policy.

But the manager, like Mackie, suggested he retains his confidence in Barton, stressing that the player has "a big part to play" in the season's run-in. Barton, unsurprisingly, agreed: "form is temporary, class is permanent," he tweeted pointedly.

While Barton was aggrieved by the derision directed at him, it did not detract from his delight at Wednesday's result. Mackie said the captain was "the happiest player in the dressing room" after the victory over Liverpool. The comeback has reinforced the players' conviction that they can remain afloat in the Premier League this season despite their daunting fixture list. Currently two points clear of the relegation zone but having played a game more than 18th-placed Bolton Wanderers, QPR must take on all of the top five teams in the league in their remaining nine matches.

"With the talent we've got in the dressing room, it doesn't matter who we're playing," said Mackie. "We just needed that little bit of belief, that little bit of confidence. It doesn't matter how good you are as a player, confidence goes a massive way. To come back from 2-0 down against a team packed with quality like Liverpool, it's got to give everyone belief in what we're trying to do. We've got a great chance of picking up results now."

"We're under no illusions. We're right in the mixer and we could get relegated. We've put ourselves in that position and were the only people who can get ourselves out of it. We can't feel sorry for ourselves.

"If we'd lost against Liverpool the doom-mongers would have been out saying we're down already. We've got nine games left, a very, very tough run-in. But every single game we're going to rack up points and definitely give it a good shot."


Loan Deadline Day Out..Hogan Ephraim Joins Bristol City and Rowan Vine Joins Gillingham

Gillingham Official Site

Posted on: Thu 22 Mar 2012

Gills new boy Rowan Vine is relishing the chance to be part of the push for the play-offs after arriving at MEMS Priestfield Stadium on Thursday.

The 29-year-old has signed on loan for the rest of the season from Premier League QPR, and he is hoping to kickstart his career here in Kent.

Vine was transferred for £2.5m when he joined Birmingham from Luton, but his career has stalled after breaking his leg in 2008 - and he can't wait to get involved with the Gills.

"It's been a while since I've been part of a squad and preparing for games, so I'm looking forward to it," he exclusively told the club's official website.

"I had a bad injury in 2008, which really knocked me out of my stride. I was doing well at QPR and it took me a while to get back and since then I've had a bad run of injuries and stuff like that, so it's been frustrating.

"It's a massive opportunity for me. I've been fit for a while, in an injury sense. I haven't played a lot of games competitively which has been frustrating, waiting and seeing what chances will come for me.

"Obviously I'm was looking and seeing that there's less than 10 games to go in the season and wondering if I was going to get any more games this season. I haven't played since September but when this opportunity came up, I was delighted."

Vine's most prolific spell came during his time with Luton, and he is hoping to get on the goal trail once more with the Gills - and help the club get into the play-offs.

"I always give 100% - that's the minimum requirement I think," he added. "I always try my best and give everything I've got and I like being involved in football games - I like being on the ball, I like trying to create chances and trying to take chances. I want to be out there and enjoy myself. I like the ball to feet and I try my best at everything.

"When I spoke to them and had a look, I think we've got a massive chance of the getting into the play-offs. Results have been good apart from the other night, which was obviously a disappointing one for the boys here.

"But there's nine games to go, we've got a big challenge. I've trained with the boys and they are up for it.

"I've come here to be part of the squad and to see if I can bring something to the table in terms of helping them get into the play-offs and I'll be trying everything I can to achieve that." Gillingham

Bristol City Official Site - CITY HOOK IN HOOPS' HOGAN
Posted on: Thu 22 Mar 2012

City have signed Queens Park Rangers attacker Hogan Ephraim on loan until the end of the season.

The 23-year-old can play up front, as a second striker or on the wing - and is on loan until April 28th.

A graduate of West Ham's famous Academy, Ephraim enjoyed loan spells at Colchester United and QPR before making his deal permenent with the Hoops in 2008.

He has played in excess of 100 games for Loftus Road side, enjoying loan spells at Leeds United and most recently Charlton Athletic during that time.

Last season Ephraim was part of the QPR team to win the npower Championship title and promotion to the top flight. However, his opportunities this season have been restricted to just three appearances.

Ephraim boasts international experience from Under-16 to Under-19 level for England. Bristol City

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- Various QPR Managerial Stats

- QPR's Official Supporters Club (OSC) - Minutes of (Relatively) Recent Meeting

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