We spoke to QPR fan Matt on his sides current form, their FFP troubles during the summer and more.
Words by Harry Trend (@HazaTrand)
The relentless Championship fixture list continues as Villa travel to Loftus Road to play QPR this evening.
Once again Matt Winton (@Mattwinton1) has given us the latest info on the R’s, who’ve been on a good run of form recently.
How would you rate your summer transfer dealings out of ten and why?
9/10 if you don’t mind the quick fix. It was a massive Summer for QPR, in the news yet again for the wrong reasons, due to FFP (take note Villa) and receiving one of the largest fines in sporting history (£42 million), which was cleverly negotiated down to a settlement of 17 million pounds over ten years fine plus the EFL’s legal costs. The club’s shareholders were also ordered to write off 21.9 million pounds of outstanding loans (easily done thanks to our rich Malaysian owners) and the club was placed under a transfer embargo for January window. A harsh fine under the circumstances, but could have been much worse in reality. This meant the Summer window was vital, however Steve McLaren took the decision to risk everything on the loan market, which now looks incredibly shrewd but short term. As a result QPR made 4 excellent loan signings in; Angel Rangel, Geoff Cameron, Tomer Hemed and Nakhi Wells – 4 players that we would never have been able to even be in the market for permanently. The clubs only permanent signing was Toni Leistner, who has been excellent and now captain’s the team. In all, the 5 signings have utterly transformed a very average side and we now find ourselves with a nosebleed having hauled 20 points from the last 10 games – which is promotion form.
What were your expectations going into the season?
Relegation. Simple. I was very sceptical of the appointment of McLaren and thought that it was an exceptionally high-risk move on a manager famed for his coaching ability, but largely ridiculed as a manager. With our FFP restraints and the loss of 6 out of contract players, I could only see a horrible season ahead.
What was the reception from QPR fans when Steve McLaren was appointed?
Very divided. Those that didn’t like Ollie were delighted and those that liked him were unhappy. The season got off to the worst possible start, club records were being broken for all the wrong reasons – worst start to the season, most goals conceded, least goals scored. Fans were calling for the managers head in August, which I can’t remember seeing before in all the years I’ve supported QPR.
QPR are undefeated in their last four league games, what would you put that down to?
Probably all the international breaks. This has given McLaren much needed time on the training ground with the players and allowed him to rethink his tactics, which were shocking at the start of the season. I also think the fitness of Geoff Cameron in the last 4 has been key. He’s a class act at this level, with the ability to shield the defence and get the ball forward. He’s been pulling the strings for QPR.
If you had to recommend one R’s player for my Telegraph fantasy football team, who would it be and why?
Has to be Ebere Eze. A magical footballer destined to play at the highest level that can score and assist at will.
Where do you see Villa finishing this season?
I thought automatic promotion, but what a poor start to the season you’ve had. I still think you will sneak the play offs…just!
Score prediction for Friday?