- QPR REPORT MESSAGEBOARD
- World's Highest Paid Managers (including QPR's Harry Redknapp!)
- QPR Official Site's London Call-In Tonight with Gerry Francis
- On This Day: Bolton 6 QPR 4 (Team Lineup)....Gavin Peacock Makes his Debut...Phil Nutt Sub as QPR Win
- Reminder FA CUP Third Round Draw on Sunday: QPR Number 32
- 2013 U21 Euros Finals Draw: England to play Israel, Israel and Norway
- Thinking Ahead: No Mark Hughes in the 2013 QPR Calendar
- A Look at Joe Jordan
- Welcome to QPR's Media Addition: "IanJTaylor @IJTaylor81 - Welcome to Loftus Road @andywa7kins who officially joins the #QPR media team today. Good to have another person on board. #PLpressoffice"
Clock is ticking for QPR stars to wow Redknapp
RELEGATION might not be until May, but the fate of many a Queens Park Rangers player will be decided much sooner, as Harry Redknapp weighs up which men he can rely on to drag them off the foot of the Premier League.
Redknapp knows exactly the type of character he likes, and come January it will obvious to all which Hoops stars fit his criteria, because those who don’t will soon be shipped out on loan or sold.
QPR were right to act when they did and replace Mark Hughes with Harry, because it gives the new manager a handful of games before the New Year to assess his team and prepare for the transfer window.
Hughes could not axe those failing players since he brought most of them in – it would have been a damning indictment of his own judgement. It’s far easier for Redknapp to be ruthless.
Clearly they are light in attack, while they are very shaky in defence. I don’t see Anton Ferdinand or Armand Traore as good enough, so at least two of the back four need replacing.
If I was a betting man I’d back Redknapp to keep Rangers in the top flight, despite their dreadful start. What QPR need more than anything is a good man-manager, and he’s the best in the business.
Harry Redknapp not afraid to put his reputation on the line
Harry Redknapp polarizes. Not because he necessarily means to, but because he has a persona many love and a few absolutely loathe.
The cheeky, street-smart cockney character whose interviews get interrupted either by a stray ball hitting him on the head during training or his wife, Sandra, calling him on his cellphone. The wheeler-dealer who works out bargains for exotic players, isn't quite sure what email is, and, occasionally, signs folks who end up living in trailer parks (never mind that the Marco Boogers tale isn't actually true, it gets repeated often enough that it may as well be). The twinkly-eyed, old-school Harry Houdini who keeps things simple and gets results against all odds (in this particular recollection of history, his experience at Southampton usually gets airbrushed).
Because Redknapp is so amiable and seemingly gets too much support from the media and most coaches and ex-pros, there is a natural backlash. Some find him fake, some see him as a Forrest Gump-type figure, a sleight-of-hand self-promoter with few original ideas, permanently in the pocket of "friendly" agents. A guy who is lazy, whose folksiness is a put-on to seduce simple-minded owners and fans. A man who, far from being a shrewd operator in the transfer market, has left a trail of financial destruction in his wake (apart from Tottenham, most of his former clubs have suffered major financial ills; whether it's all -- or even partly -- his fault is another matter).
Obviously, the "real" Redknapp lies somewhere between the two extremes. I spent some time with him a few years back and I actually found a guy who loved to talk football, who was very comfortable discussing tactics and whose knowledge of foreign players was pretty good. It's a side of him that's rarely portrayed in the media, and heck, for all I know, he could have been putting it on.
But then, if he really was the seat-of-the-pants dilettante some believe he is, would Joe Jordan have worked alongside him at Portsmouth, Tottenham and now Queens Park Rangers? In fact, would he have wanted Joe around? I've known Jordan for several years, I've worked with him on TV. He is basically the antithesis of the vacuous, happy-go-lucky character Redknapp supposedly plays in the media.
Jordan is serious, methodical and studious. If Redknapp was really "Happy Harry" and nothing else, he would find Jordan depressing and funereal and wouldn't want him anywhere near him.
But what's interesting about Redknapp -- apart from the visceral reactions he generates -- is his willingness to get back into the game and put his reputation on the line. You saw it when he accepted the QPR job. It's not a common trait among managers, especially ones near the top of the food chain.
The standard arc for a boss is to move on to a bigger job if he can, or at least make a lateral move if he can't or if he gets sacked. Look at Alan Curbishley. Not that long ago he was a kind of "thinking man's Redknapp:" a more cerebral East End type with West Ham connections. When he parted ways with West Ham in 2008, most predicted he'd be back in a Premier League job real soon. Four years later, Curbishley is still out there. Why? Most likely because he simply wasn't willing to take a step down.
You could make a similar case for Rafa Benitez. He was out of work for nearly two years after leaving Inter and before becoming Chelsea's interim boss last week. He flirted with a number of gigs but ultimately stayed put, in anticipation of another "big" job.
Why do managers sit out and wait for better -- and better-funded -- jobs?
The answer, if you're cynical, is that most are generally insecure and they are terrified as to what may happen if they fail at a smaller club. Screw up with a Champions League-caliber team and, generally speaking, you'll be thought of as an A-list boss just because you managed at that level. But move down a notch or two and come up short and you'll have a problem.
The (incorrect) assumption is that coaching a big club to a top-four finish is somehow tougher than, say, avoiding relegation on a shoestring. And people who do the former are, almost automatically, better managers than those who do the latter. Because the converse also applies -- a guy who gets relegated with a club that probably should get relegated is going to be worse than a guy with a top-three wage bill who fails to qualify for the Champions League.
That's just the groupthink that exists in the game, with very few exceptions.
Back to Redknapp, though. What prompts a guy who finished fourth in the Premier League last year and turns 66 in March to take over a club that have yet to win this season?
It's not the money. It can't be. Redknapp does live in a palatial home that looks like something out of "Miami Vice." But he's done extremely well in previous jobs and, by all accounts, he doesn't have a flashy lifestyle.
Could it be that he genuinely loves his job and the buzz of management? So much so that rather than holding out for a can't-miss gig or sitting there and collecting appearance fees by moving his stand-up routine to the pundit's coach, he's willing to take over the bottom team in the league (again)?
Even his harshest critics have to concede this: He is putting his own reputation on the line. Again.
There are plenty who would never dare to do what he is doing in taking the QPR job. ESPN
Guardian - Stuart James
QPR's Harry Redknapp ready to offer Darren Bent escape route out of Villa
• Villa striker fell out with Redknapp at Tottenham
• Redknapp: I like Darren, I've no problem with him
Queens Park Rangers are ready to offer Darren Bent an escape route out of Aston Villa, with Harry Redknapp confident he can patch up his differences with the striker he fell out with at Tottenham Hotspur when he accused the England international of missing a chance "my missus could have scored".
With Andy Johnson and Bobby Zamora facing long spells on the sidelines, Redknapp, the QPR manager, has made signing a proven goalscorer in the January transfer window a priority to give his side a chance of survival.
Bent, whose 102 Premier League goals have come at an average of one every two appearances, falls into that category and, furthermore, he will be available when the window reopens after being deemed surplus to requirements by Paul Lambert, the Villa manager.
Having been reduced to watching from the stands in the games against Arsenal on Saturday and Reading on Tuesday, it has now emerged that Bent had recovered from an ankle injury three weeks ago, which means he has been overlooked for the past four Premier League fixtures.
Liverpool have been linked with Bent, who cost Villa a fee rising to £24m when he joined from Sunderland a little under two years ago, but Brendan Rodgers, the manager at Anfield, has other targets. Fulham are far more likely suitors – Martin Jol, their manager, was in charge at Spurs when Bent joined in 2007 and he remains an admirer – although QPR would appear to be the frontrunners.
When Redknapp was in charge at Spurs he upset Bent after he ridiculed the forward for failing to score with a header against Portsmouth in 2009, but in the wake of the goalless draw at Sunderland on Tuesday night, which highlighted the need for reinforcements up front, the QPR manager talked as if that episode were water under the bridge.
"I like Darren. I've got no problems with Darren Bent," Redknapp said. "I just made a comment that maybe I shouldn't, when I said I think my missus would have scored when he missed a header that day. I can laugh at myself, I don't mind.
"It was obviously difficult, he didn't like it and that was sort of it really, and within no time he decided that he didn't want to stay. But I think he's a good player. I'd like to have Darren Bent available, believe you me. He can score goals. I've got no problem with Darren as a boy or as a player. I think he's a good player."
There is no suggestion that Bent will submit a transfer request at Villa but, by the same token, it is easy to imagine he would relish the chance to start playing football again. With that in mind, he is unlikely to rule QPR out because of what happened with Redknapp in the past.
Villa will have to take a big hit on their investment, with £10m likely to be the maximum they could hope to recoup for a player who turns 29 in February and whose manager has made it so clear that he has no future at the club.
Lambert's decision to not even name Bent as a substitute in the past two matches has prompted much debate but it has now come to light that the forward had declared himself fit ahead of the two previous fixtures, against Manchester United and Manchester City. He was not in the matchday squad on either occasion.
Bent has not received any explanation from Lambert for the way he has been treated, which has left the player mystified. He lost the captaincy in September and was dropped two weeks later, only to come off the bench and score the equaliser against West Bromwich Albion at Villa Park.
Bent has started only one game for Villa since the Albion fixture and in recent weeks has seen Jordan Bowery, a 21-year-old striker signed from League One side Chesterfield in August, named ahead of him on the bench.
There were reports Bent stormed out of the changing room on Tuesday night after Lambert read out the names of the 18 players involved but sources have suggested Bent shook hands with the players to wish them "all the best" ahead of the match. He later watched the game from his executive box, in the Trinity Road stand.
Following the 1-0 victory over Reading, which lifted Villa out of the bottom three, Lambert was asked 22 questions about Bent in his post-match press conference. As well as talking repeatedly about the difficulties of managing 25 players and how he tries to "pick a team a team and squad to win a game", the Villa manager insisted he rated Bent as a footballer, rejected any suggestion that his attitude was an issue and claimed to have no problem with how hard he was working in training.
In the real world, though, everything points to the exit door
MARK HUGHES & SHAUN WRIGHT PHILLIPS INVESTING IN THE US?
The Offside Rules
File Under "Out of Nowhere": FL group planning $400m SSS
You sitting down? Good because there seems to be serious, on-the-downlow SSS talk in Florida. And in Tampa of all places.
According to a quasi-hidden website, "VSI Flames, Inc. (VSI Tampa Bay Flames) recently entered in to a formal agreement with its funding partner PRI Development Partners LLC for the purpose of providing the Tampa Bay region with a first class and purpose built soccer stadium along with a separate 20+ training field and Academy complex...."
Check out some of the names of investors in VSI: Shaun Wright Phillips, Mikel Jon Obi, Mark Hughes, and Ian Wright. Safe to say this group has more than a few real soccer heads. Oh and not incidentally, VSI will run a USL Pro club in 2013 that will play in an Empire Fields-esque temporary modular stadium built by Nussli.... " The Offside Rules
See Also - Vispro and Vispro Investors
- re West Ham Fans Chanting Anti-Semitic slurs at Tottenham Game