Rabu, 31 Oktober 2012

Granero enjoying life at QPR

Esteban Granero: Spanish midfielder happy with life at Queens Park Rangers

The 25-year-old joined QPR from Spanish giants Real Madrid on a four-year contract in August and has scored one goal in seven Premier League appearances so far.

This is the first time that Granero is playing outside his home country of Spain and he insists that he is enjoying every moment of it.

"I have been here for two months and I am very happy at a personal and professional level," he told Marca. "I am also very happy with the team.

"This is another world and the change has injected me with more energy and enthusiasm.

"I want to experience new sensations. This is an experience that will help me grow in every way. I want to enjoy this city and also face the challenge that it poses."

United v Reds among Sky games

Manchester United v Liverpool: Live on Sky on January 13

Sky Sports has confirmed a batch of new live games - including some potential top-of-the-table clashes - as the season starts to heat up in early 2013.

Liverpool's trip to Anfield will be followed by Arsenal's clash with Manchester City on a Super Sunday double-header on January 13.

The following weekend sees another attractive Super Sunday double bill featuring Chelsea's Stamford Bridge clash with Arsenal and Tottenham's home game with Manchester United.

Other confirmed clashes include a London derby between QPR and Tottenham on January 14 and Liverpool's trip to Arsenal on January 30.

Eight new live Premier League games confirmed for January:

Sunday Jan 13: Man Utd v Liverpool (1.30pm)

Sunday Jan 13: Arsenal v Man City (4pm)

Monday Jan 14: QPR v Tottenham (8pm)

Sunday Jan 20: Chelsea v Arsenal (1.30pm)

Sunday Jan 20: Tottenham v Man Utd (4pm)

Monday Jan 21: Southampton v Everton (8pm)

Tues day Jan 29: Sunderland v Swansea (7.45pm)

Wednesday Jan 30: Arsenal v Liverpool (7.45pm).

Mark Hughes impressed with Julio Cesar's start to life at QPR

Julio Cesar: Impressed QPR boss Mark Hughes following switch from Inter

Cesar, capped 64 times by his country, joined the R's from Inter Milan this summer and has made a seamless transition to English football.

And Hughes, while hailing Cesar's attitude both on and off the pitch, says the 33-year-old is up there with the goalkeeping greats.

"He's been an absolutely remarkable signing for us," Hughes told the club's official website.

"Not only his ability as a keeper, but as a guy. His mentality in the dressing room is huge for us. And that's a real benefit we'll tap in to.

"He understands what it takes, he drives people around him and inspires people by his manner and presence.

"Over the years I had the pleasure of playing with (Peter) Schmeichel and (Neville) Southall and he's right up there," he said.

"I haven't seen Julio over the time I've seen Schmeichel and Southall, but I've been very much impressed with what I've seen.

"He's very much on a par with the top keepers in the world in my view."

Hughes: R's enjoying challenge

Hughes: Still seeking first league win of season

Chairman Tony Fernandes has bankrolled the signings of Julio Cesar, Park Ji-sung and Esteban Granero, players more familiar with the fight for silverware rather than scraping for points at the bottom of the table.

Cesar and Park, as well as Jose Bosingwa and Djibril Cisse, all own Champions League winners medals with on-loan defender Fabio also having a European Cup final appearance to his name.

But Hughes feels all of these big-name stars are happy and fulfilled at Loftus Road.

"I think it's a different situation for them," he said.

"But when you speak to them they're really enjoying the emotions that they're feeling and the challenge they have. That's the reason they've come here.

"They knew they were coming to a club that wasn't going to be winning week in week out. Which is what they're used to. That's one of the reasons they've come here because they want that challenge, they want a different stimulus and that's what they're ge tting certainly."

Hughes believes a number of the marquee signings the club made over the summer could have taken the easier option of staying put but is pleased they have shown the passion to try and make a name for themselves at QPR.

He said: "You look at Granero again, he's 25, he could very easily have stayed at Real Madrid. They thought the world of him there. They would have given him a contract for the rest of his career probably, but he wanted more.

"He wanted to play week in week out and he wanted to show people what he can do. And he will do that. It's a different challenge for him now he's a key player. At Madrid he was a player that was relied on but didn't play many games, so he wanted to change that, credit to him."

Former Manchester City boss Hughes maintains his side have the ability to compete in the Premier League despite sitting bottom of the table after eight games and thinks the input of his big-name players will make the tell ing difference.

"That was one of the reasons I bought him (Granero) and the likes of Julio Cesar and Park Ji-sung because they've got a different mentality, a winner's mentality," he said.

"That has to come to the fore and it has done. We will turn this around because of the players I have in my group but we have to get the first win under our belts.

"That will calm everything down and then we can build from there. The longer it goes on we put ourselves under pressure."

Selasa, 30 Oktober 2012

Goalkeeper Julio Cesar says he is not sorry he joined QPR in the summer

Julio Cesar: Says he is not sorry he joined QPR in the summer

Cesar has made six appearances for the Hoops since joining from Inter Milan in the summer and is yet to experience a win with his new club.

Mark Hughes' men are rock-bottom of the Premier League and in desperate need of success heading into Saturday's London derby against Arsenal.

Despite their predicament, 33-year-old Brazilian Cesar says he is not sorry he made the move to Loftus Road, but feels his own performances need to improve.

The keeper, who scored an own-goal in last weekend's draw with Everton, told The Sun: "I am unhappy with my performance since I arrived here.

"But I'm not sorry about my choice to join QPR. I just want to show the supporters the Julio Cesar who played well for Brazil and Inter Milan. This is my dream.

"It's incredible that still we do not have one league victory. I am convinced we are not a bad team but bad luck has touched us."

Regardless of QPR's winless start to the league, Ces ar insists he is enjoying life in the English top-flight.

"I love the atmosphere in the grounds, there is so much passion," he said. "The English fans suffer with their football just like any Brazilian or Argentinian.

"The sport is a religion here and that's why I accepted the challenge to play here."

Rovers and out for Redknapp

Harry Redknapp: Has quashed talk of taking the reins at Blackburn

The 65-year-old was sacked by Tottenham in June following speculation linking him with the England job, and an advisory role with AFC Bournemouth has been the extent of his involvement with the game since.

But after rumours he was set to be unveiled as Steve Kean's successor at Ewood Park, Redknapp told Sky Sports: "I woke up and saw the papers and they said I was supposed to be at an interview for the Blackburn job. It's complete nonsense, obviously.

"It's a good club and it's a good job for somebody but it's not one I'll be pursuing.

"When we saw the speculation my representative Paul Stretford spoke with them to clear up where it was coming from but it's not something I would look to do.

"They're a good club with a good squad and good support but it's not for me.

"I'm starting to get bored. You can only play golf every so often and my golf isn't improving. I'm looking to get back in (into football) and I'll just wait and see what happens."

Redknapp has been mentioned as a possible contender if QPR decide to part company with Mark Hughes, whose expensively-assembled team are propping up the Premier League table after no wins in nine games.

Stephane Mbia believes Queens Park Rangers will secure a top-half finish

Stephane Mbia: Believes QPR will improve and push on up the table

Mark Hughes' much-changed squad are currently sitting bottom of the top-flight, with just three points from their opening eight games.

But Mbia, signed from Marseille on transfer deadline day, believes the Hoops can build on their draw against Everton last time against Arsenal on Saturday and the side can push on.

He told L'Equipe: "We can have trust against Arsenal. We have good reinforcements, we play well, but we still need some time.

"I am keen to bet we will finish the season in 7th or 8th position."

Mbia says he did not know where QPR were based before his summer switch and he enjoyed his time at Marseille.

"People let me know Marseille needed money. I thought QPR was in Scotland... If it was for my good and the good of the club, why not?

"But I never thought I would come here. I would have liked coach Didier Deschamps (now France manager) to remain one more season with the challenge to get back in the Ch ampions League.

"But I am happy because I marked OM history with titles."

Senin, 29 Oktober 2012

Mark Hughes says QPR's owner remains happy with their performances despite results

Mark Hughes: Says QPR's owner remains content with performances

Hughes has come under pressure after failing to lead his side to a league win so far this season, with poor results leaving them rock-bottom of the table.

Rangers' 1-0 defeat at Arsenal on Saturday marked their latest setback but the manager insists Fernandes remains satisfied with the displays QPR are producing.

Hughes told the Daily Mirror: "I'm sure he has the same view we all have, that in terms of performance and what we're producing football-wise, he feels more than happy."

The Welsh boss, who succeeded Neil Warnock at the helm in January, is confident wins will come for his side.

He added: "I've got a better team than I had last year, and I won Premier League games last year with a squad that wasn't at the level we have now.

"I know that at some point in the future we will start winning games. We will go up against a lesser team than Arsenal at the Emirates and we will get points.

"We're playing good foo tball. And it's not just against teams in and around us, it's against the top teams in the country, the top teams in Europe.

"It's hard to win these games, everybody understands that. But we need to get maximum points and I hope in the games coming up that's what will happen."

Fernandes has faith in Hughes

Fernandes: Support for Hughes

Reports have suggested Hughes, whose side are bottom of the Barclays Premier League, will be facing the axe if the R's do not record their first top-flight victory of the season next Saturday by beating Reading at home.

But writing on Monday on his Twitter account, Fernandes has described such claims as "rubbish" and insists the club's hierarchy are behind Hughes.

"Mark has my backing and the shareholders," Fernandes said.

"We need a little luck and no injuries. What's written in the press is all rubbish.

"I honestly believe we have one of the best managers in the premier league. And we are in for the long term. Whatever happens. We love QPR.

"Ill be there at reading so rangers fans ill be available to meet and chat.

"Trust me on this one. Keep the faith. Stability is the key."

Hughes succeeded Neil Warnock as QPR manager in January and the team avoided relegation from the Premier League on the final day of the 2011-12 campaign.

The Welshman recruited a raft of new players over the summer, but so far this term the London outfit have lost six and drawn three of their nine top-flight fixtures, with the latest defeat being Saturday's 1-0 reverse at Arsenal.

Minggu, 28 Oktober 2012

Hughes insists QPR are progressing despite defeat at Arsenal

Mark Hughes: Confident QPR can improve despite another defeat to Arsenal

Mikel Arteta netted six minutes from time to ensure the Hoops remain bottom of the table on just three points.

But the QPR boss, who hit out at the referee and officials for not ruling Arteta's winner offside, is confident fortunes can improve ahead of their games with Reading and Southampton.

"We are building in terms of performances," said Hughes.

"The guys are used to playing together. We are looking for continuity.

"In terms of preparations for games I wouldn't question what we are doing. We just need to cut out the individual errors at key stages.

"We have played nine games, the majority against teams in the top 10. We have got a run of games coming up that hopefully will allow us to get maximum points.

"We weren't expected to win at Arsenal, but we have had a real go and given a good account of ourselves, so we will draw belief from that."

Anton wears campaign T-shirt

Ferdinand: In his T-shirt

Ferdinand, along with his brother, Manchester United defender Rio, did not wear the campaign T-shirts last weekend and released a statement earlier this week insisting that Kick It Out needed to become "more relevant", while recognising the fantastic work it had done in the past.

The statement also expressed the brothers' disappointment with the Football Association, after its decision to ban John Terry for four games for racially abusing Anton Ferdinand in a match last October while banning Liverpool striker Luis Suarez for eight matches for a similar offence.

Saturday's gesture by Ferdinand is expected to be followed by a handshake between Rio Ferdinand and Ashley Cole before United play Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Sunday.

Cole gave evidence on behalf of Terry in the criminal case relating to the October 2011 incident, leading Rio Ferdinand to endorse a tweet which referred to Cole as a 'choc ice'. Ferdinand was subsequently fined by the FA f or re-tweeting the offending tweet.

Mikel Arteta's goal gives Arsenal late victory as Stephane Mbia's red card costs QPR

Mikel Arteta prods home a late winner for Arsenal against Queens Park Rangers

Jack Wilshere's promising return from 17 months out looked likely to count for little until Stephane Mbia's red card invited a late assault which yielded Mikel Arteta's bundled winner (84).

And after a week which brought back-to-back defeats and a barracking for Arsene Wenger and his board at the club's AGM, Arteta's intervention provided a desperately needed morale boost.

It was also enough to keep QPR bottom and without a win, denying Mark Hughes' side a deserved point which their discipline appeared certain to bring until Mbia's rash kick at Thomas Vermaelen left them a man short.

In the chaotic climax that followed Arsenal might have had a handful but for Julio Cesar, while Esteban Granero and Jamie Mackie both missed one-on-one opportunities to rescue the draw.

When the dust settles Wenger will reflect on an afternoon which did little to support his theory that Arsenal can challenge for the title, though there was encouragemen t in the shape of Wilshere's return.

The England midfielder had been pencilled in for Tuesday's Capital One Cup tie at Reading, and his inclusion had a hint of expediency given Wenger's pressing need for a performance to silence the Emirates' harsher regulars.

The 20-year-old did not disappoint his manager, coming close to a first-half opener with a drop of the shoulder and low 20-yard shot, while Cesar was equally edgy dealing with Olivier Giroud's ambitious drive.

The goalkeeper was beaten altogether by an Aaron Ramsey header, but the midfielder's looping attempt from Bacary Sagna's cross cannoned to safety off the top of the crossbar.

Rangers slowly emerged as an attacking force and, after weathering a fraught second-half spell when Bobby Zamora came close to an own goal and Granero was fortunate to stay on, only a linesman's offside flag denied Junior Hoilett.

Wilshere succumbed to fatigue as Wenger threw on Theo Walcott, and the substi tute's right-wing centre broke for Santi Cazorla, who fired wastefully high from the penalty spot.

That appeared that, but Mbia's mindlessness beckoned Arsenal on and when Cesar parried Giroud's header Arteta - loitering in what looked like an offside position - forced in the rebound at the second attempt.

Cazorla and Ramsey threatened to end the argument but it was Rangers who finished the stronger, Granero skewing wide on the stretch and Mackie firing too close to Vito Mannone.

Shots on Target

ArsenalTeam StatisticsQueens Park Rangers
01st Half Goals0
9Shots off Target2
4Blocked Shots2
1Yellow Cards2
0Red Cards1
88Passing Success77.6
85.7Tackles Success90.5
64.9Territorial Advantage35.1
599Total Passes294
31Total Crosses14
134Lost Balls140
65.61st Half Poss.34.4
692nd Half Poss.31

Sabtu, 27 Oktober 2012

Mark Hughes was unhappy with the referee after QPR lost at Arsenal

Mikel Arteta prodded the ball home six minutes from time to leave QPR bottom of the table, but Hughes was adamant the Spaniard was offside and was not accepting the referee's explanation for the decision.

"I can't remember any clear-cut chances they had while we had 11 players on the pitch, but with the sending off, that changed the make-up of the game," Hughes told Sky Sports.

"We conceded a goal during that period and when the referee sees it again he will understand he has made a huge mistake as the lad is clearly offside on two occasions leading up to the goal.

"When you're in the situation we're in, with not many points on the board and down to 10 men, you need officials to get the key decisions to help us along the way and we didn't get it from them.

"I've been in to see the referee and he has conjured up some story about Ryan Nelsen that, because he left the field of play he played everybody onside, but I've no idea what he's g oing on about because Ryan Nelsen didn't at any stage leave the field of play.

"He'll have to explain that one to me because that has hurt us."

Regarding Mbia's red card for kicking out at Thomas Vermaelen, QPR boss Hughes was disappointed by the Arsenal captain's reaction.

He added: "That's a frustration because the linesman has actually given a free-kick our way.

"Stephane was on the floor and he has swung the leg, there is very minimal contact and Vermaelen is going to make the most of that situation. He dives and rolls around, and makes sure the referee makes a decision.

"There is contact and it's a wild challenge. It's a sending off that has really hurt us at a point in time when we're making positive substitutions as there was a real opportunity to get three points."

Stephane Mbia believes QPR will secure a top-half finish this season

Stephane Mbia: Believes QPR will improve and push on up the table

Mark Hughes' much-changed squad are currently sitting bottom of the top-flight, with just three points from their opening eight games.

But Mbia, signed from Marseille on transfer deadline day, believes the Hoops can build on their draw against Everton last time against Arsenal on Saturday and the side can push on.

He told L'Equipe: "We can have trust against Arsenal. We have good reinforcements, we play well, but we still need some time.

"I am keen to bet we will finish the season in 7th or 8th position."

Mbia says he did not know where QPR were based before his summer switch and he enjoyed his time at Marseille.

"People let me know Marseille needed money. I thought QPR was in Scotland... If it was for my good and the good of the club, why not?

"But I never thought I would come here. I would have liked coach Didier Deschamps (now France manager) to remain one more season with the challenge to get back in the Ch ampions League.

"But I am happy because I marked OM history with titles."

Jumat, 26 Oktober 2012

QPR defender Anton Ferdinand expected to snub Kick It Out campaign again

Anton Ferdinand: Midweek statement

The centre-half was one of several high-profile players not to wear the anti-racism organisation's T-shirt ahead of last weekend's fixtures.

And in the meantime Ferdinand and his brother Rio have released a statement offering to help make Kick It Out more "relevant in its fight to stamp out racism in football."

Asked whether his player would now alter his T-shirt stance, Hughes said: "He's made his feelings known and not that much water has passed under the bridge since last weekend.

"It's his own personal decision, I've said that before. People make a judgement on what they feel is correct and what they feel they can support.

"At the moment Anton and a number of players don't want to show their support by wearing a T-shirt. I'm not going to force people to do what they don't want to do."

Hughes: PL has missed Wilshere

Jack Wilshere: Support from Mark Hughes

Hughes takes his QPR side to Arsenal on Saturday still searching for their first league win of the campaign and Wilshere, who has not played for the Gunners in 15 months, is likely to be involved at some stage.

The 20-year-old England international was earning plaudits for his displays in the heart of the Arsenal midfield before suffering an ankle injury that has troubled him ever since.

Hughes feels Wilshere is one of the shining lights of the English game but is hoping he does not have an immediate impact on his return.

"He is an outstanding young player, the league has been a lesser league really because when you take a young player of his ability out for so long then everyone misses watching his talents," he said.

"Obviously from my own selfish point of view as an opposition manager I hope he would have been one week away from returning.

"He played in midweek with a view to being involved in our game so we will see whether or no t he makes an appearance.

"I think everybody is pleased, he is a young man who seemed to have the world at his feet and he has had a real setback with the injury and the amount of time he has been out. We wish him well but not too many good wishes if he plays at the weekend."

Arsenal go into the fixture on the back of two straight defeats but Arsene Wenger's side will still be the firm favourites against a QPR side who are yet to record an away league victory during Hughes' tenure.

The Welshman acknowledged that Arsenal have not had the best of weeks but is not expecting any favours on Saturday.

"They're a very good team, and they've had a couple of results that have knocked them back somewhat," he said.

"But it's their home game, and you'd expect them to come out and for their fans' benefit, put in a good performance because they've stepped away from their high standards in the last couple of games.

"We go there with the belief we c an compete against any team in the Premier League. We've drawn with Chelsea, drawn with Everton and run Tottenham very close. We acquitted ourselves well for long periods against Manchester City.

"So we know we can go to the top sides and make a game of a difficult fixture, and we'll try and cause an upset, because I'm sure there aren't that many people expecting us to get a positive result. We'll go there with real belief."

Hughes has had his fair share of run-ins with opposing bosses during his time in management but the former Manchester City boss is looking forward to facing a man he considers 'an outstanding manager'.

"I don't think I've had any disagreements (with Wenger)," he said. "I have maybe questioned how long he has thrown the ball back into play sometimes.

"I have the utmost respect for Arsene Wenger, he is a fantastic manager. Every time you go up against a top manager in the Premier League it is a huge test so I'm looking forward t o the challenge of going up against one of the outstanding managers of our time."

Rs defender Ryan Nelsen is expecting to be in for a tough afternoon at the Emirates but reckons the players will take the belief from their 0-0 draw at home to Chelsea into the game.

"Whatever Arsenal side you come up against, what you know about them is that they'll look to play in a certain way," he told qpr.co.uk.

"We'll need to be at our best and that's what we plan to be. When you play the bigger teams and they get it right you can be in a whole lot of hurt if eight or nine of them play to their full potential, but on the flip side, that can be reversed as well. If they're off their game, we can cause them problems.

"Chelsea are a fine example. They have only dropped points so far this season against us, and we're unfortunately bottom of the league at the moment. That's the kind of league this is. It's a very fine line."

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Rabu, 24 Oktober 2012

Mbia confident ahead of Arsenal

Mbia: Looking for points

Much had been expected from the Hoops after a number of high-profile acquisitions this summer, but they languish bottom of the Barclays Premier League without a win from their opening eight matches.

Mark Hughes' side will do well to stop that run stretching to nine games in this weekend at the Emirates, although Mbia believes QPR can get a result at the Emirates Stadium.

"Everybody wants to get that first win," the Cameroon international told the club's official website.

"We haven't had much luck, but it is up to us to make our own luck and once we do the results will come.

"The lads are calm and we know if we keep improving we will start to climb the table.

"Arsenal is a big game for us and of course we know what London derbies mean for the fans.

"We can go to the Emirates with confidence, because we have a good team with a good, strong mentality.

"We have experience and at places like the Emirates, you need to be stro ng, composed and confident.

"Arsenal will want to bounce back from their defeat at Norwich, but we need the points as well to move up the table."

Mbia became the last of QPR's summer signings when he completed his move from Marseille on transfer deadline day.

The 26-year-old has started the west Londoners' last four matches, including Sunday's frustrating 1-1 draw at home to 10-man Everton.

"We played well against Everton," Mbia said. "I thought we were very unlucky. We deserved much more from the game.

"We really wanted to get that first win for the club and the fans.

"I feel as though I've settled down now in England. It always takes time to get used to a new country and a new way of life, but I feel like I am at home now and that will only help me on the pitch.

"The manager and Mike (Rigg, technical director) have been great in helping me settle in and I am very happy in London with Queens Park Rangers."

Ferdinands call for change

Anton and Rio Ferdinand: Disappointed with FA and PFA

In a wide-ranging statement released by the Ferdinands' management team, New Era Global Sports, the pair have expressed their desire to "work with football's existing organisations towards the betterment of the game and to achieve immediate action".

In addition, they have claimed the Kick it Out organisation, whilst doing good work in the past, needs to change and have offered to work with it to make it "more relevant in its fight to stamp out racism in football".

"It has been a year since the incident at Loftus Road," read the statement.

"During that time, some of the deep divisions that exist in football have been exposed.

"In the coming months there will be ongoing discussions, we are sure, on finding a way forward. We intend to participate in these discussions, along with numerous other current and ex professionals of all races, from the grass roots upwards, across the football community as a whole."

The statement continued: "On the issue of Kick it Out, we would like to go on record to say what fantastic work they have done in the past regarding education and awareness.

"However, times change and organisations need to change with them. We are more than happy to join the discussion, privately, to make Kick it Out more relevant in its fight to stamp out racism in football.

"Although we have been left disappointed by the PFA and the FA's actions over the last year, as a family, we are committed to working with football's existing organisations towards the betterment of the game and to achieve immediate action.

"We would like to thank all the fans and the staff at Queen's Park Rangers and Manchester United for their support in what has been a difficult year. In particular we want to thank Sir Alex Ferguson and Mark Hughes.

"We will not be discussing publicly any issues connected with the case. We are now going to concentrate on playing football."

Selasa, 23 Oktober 2012

Balanta makes Dons return

Balanta: Back with the Dons

The 22-year-old has had two previous spells with the Dons and goes straight into the squad for Tuesday's trip to Crawley.

Balanta, who recently signed a new three-year deal at Loftus Road, is not eligible for next week's FA Cup tie with Cambridge City.

He first joined Karl Robinson's side in June 2010 before rejoining on a six-month loan deal the following summer.

Senin, 22 Oktober 2012

Hoilett: QPR deserved more

Hoilett: Disappointed not to collect first win

Everton were reduced to 10 men when Steven Pienaar was dismissed just after the hour mark but managed to survive to take a point from Loftus Road.

Hoilett had opened the scoring after just two minutes but QPR were pegged back by an unfortunate Julio Cesar own goal.

Former Blackburn man Hoilett believes Mark Hughes' side performed well enough to record their elusive maiden league win of the campaign.

"I thought we played well for the duration of the match and were very unlucky not to get the three points that we're craving right now," he told the club's website.

"We were relatively happy with a point against a very good Everton side, but I felt on the night we deserved more.

"We'll keep working hard to get more points on the board and we showed again against Everton what we are capable of when we click into gear."

The 22-year-old felt that Pienaar's red card made the task of scoring a winner harder for the R's as Everton settle d for a draw.

He said: "It was tough for us when they went down to 10 men because they got two banks of four across the middle and made it very difficult for us to break them down.

"We created a few decent chances though and on another day we might have got maximum points, but all in all we've got another point on the board and we'll keep working hard for that first victory and then push on up the table."

Hoilett, who came close to winning the game late on when he forced a smart save out of Everton goalkeeper Tim Howard, reckons he should have had a penalty when he was caught by Seamus Coleman inside the Everton box as the game entered the final 10 minutes.

"I managed to steal the ball and get in front of Coleman. I got caught and that's why I went to ground," he said.

"Everyone in the dressing room afterwards was convinced it was a stonewall penalty, so it's difficult to take."

USA international Howard praised the defensive qualitie s shown by the Toffees once Pienaar had been shown his second yellow card and was happy with a point.

"I thought in the first half the defence was fantastic, they were really strong and powerful in the air. In the second half we had to be, it was backs to the wall stuff," he told the club's official website.

"At the point of the sending off we would have taken the draw - we had to dig in and the early goal hurt. It was preventable but in the end I thought we played well and it felt like a good point.

"No matter how confident we are going forward, I don't think we can ever lose that 'roll up your sleeves and fight for the team' spirit that we are known for.

"If you get away from that then the rest of it doesn't matter."

Shakers land Hewitt signature

Hewitt: Joins Bury

His spell at Gigg Lane is due to conclude on November 24.

Hewitt has a solitary League Cup appearance to his name for Rangers since moving to Loftus Road from Harrow Borough in January 2011.

The 22-year-old played seven times during a spell with Dagenham last season and goes straight into Kevin Blackwell's squad for Bury's League One basement clash at home to Hartlepool on Tuesday night.

Ouseley defends Kick It Out

Rio Ferdinand faces possible sanctions by Manchester United for not wearing a Kick It Out shirt before their game against Stoke in protest at what he believes is inadequacies within the campaign, while Jason Roberts and Anton Ferdinand were among other players to take similar action.

However, Lord Ouseley says the campaign is doing its best.

"We don't make the decisions, we don't run football. We are a small charity trying to help football come to terms with the reality of the 21st century," he is quoted in The Guardian as saying.

"We can shout from the rooftops and I can understand what the black players are saying: you are too involved in the game in the way you operate to be independent and say the things that have to be said.

"The power and decision-making is with the Football Association and the Premier League. We all would have liked the John Terry case to have been wrapped up within days last October, alas it's lasted a whole year an d it has caused a lot of pain and grief.

"They know what has to be done. We've been knocking on their door for a long, long, long time so they know what their responsibilities are. The absence of their voices during all this has been noticeable."

He continued: "I can understand the irritation from the black players who feel they have grievances which have not been heard. They've turned their fire against Kick It Out as a sport campaign organisation that's out there on the front line trying to bring about change but has not been able to sufficiently bring about it to satisfy them.

"Those players have every right to express their grievances. I think their grievances are misdirected at not wearing a T-shirt because I think the grievances are much more substantial. I think it's with the game as a whole."

Jumat, 19 Oktober 2012

Ferguson: Roberts stance wrong

Ferguson: Has condemned Roberts' Kick it Out stance

Ferguson refuted reports that Rio Ferdinand was planning to join brother Anton of Queens Park Rangers and Reading striker Roberts in not wearing the anti-discrimination body's clothing ahead of the fixtures this weekend.

Roberts told Sky Sports News he would not be wearing his T-shirt because he felt Kick it Out had failed in its attempt to tackle racism in football and not been strident enough in their response to the John Terry and Luis Suarez racial abuse incidents.

"I have to disagree with Jason Roberts. I think he is making the wrong point," Ferguson said. "Everyone should be united, with all the players in the country wearing the Kick it Out warm-up tops.

"I don't know what point he is trying to make. I don't know if he is trying to put himself on a different pedestal from everyone. But he really should be supporting all the rest of the players who are doing it."

As a leading anti-racism campaigner, United defender Rio - whose brother Anton was the subject of racist abuse from Chelsea captain Terry - would be an obvious candidate to snub the campaign.

However, it does not appear that will happen and Ferguson added: "When you do something, and everyone believes in it, you should all do it together. There shouldn't be sheep wandering off.

"I think he is making the wrong message. All the players are wearing it. I have only heard that Jason Roberts is different - but he is very different. He plays a game and is in the studio 20 minutes after it. That is a great privilege."

Ferguson's stance won backing from Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger, who said: "If they (black players) do not join in, that makes the campaign not credible."

Reading striker Roberts told Sky Sports News: "It seems like the authorities don't have the stomach to take this on, and if the players don't take it on then nobody will."

Roberts believes Terry's four-game ban is "nowhere near what people expect" and says it is down to players to take a lead.

Roberts has called on Chelsea to come down hard on their captain after a club statement confirmed Terry is facing internal disciplinary action.

He said: "You know we've sat and we've spoken about the Serbian FA and their view of what happened out there with the England Under-21s and how you have to take responsibility.

"I think for a club like Chelsea, if you find yourself in the middle of this, you have to be seen to be doing the correct thing and the correct thing is to be taking action against someone who has done something like that in the game.

"If you used that sort of language in the workplace, what sanction would you expect to be given? I don't know. You say about fans saying it on the sidelines and what would happen to them?

"Certainly a four-game ban is nowhere near what people would expect for something like this. I guess it's up to Chelsea to do what's right."

Bernstein wants end to Terry row

Bernstein: Unhappy with impact of Terry case

Terry was suspended for four games and fined 220,000 by an independent Football Association regulatory commission after he was found guilty of racially abusing QPR defender Anton Ferdinand in a game last season.

The time taken for the FA to handle the case has been criticised, although their investigation was held up by the need to defer to the police and the Crown Prosecution Service's criminal proceedings.

The governing body's verdict was finally announced two weeks ago and Terry accepted the sanction ahead of Thursday's deadline.

And a statement from Bernstein on the FA's website read: "The decision by John Terry not to appeal his FA charge hopefully brings to a close a difficult period for the domestic game in England in which, unfortunately, the reputation of English football has been damaged.

"John Terry has now been sanctioned and held accountable for his actions. I am pleased he has apologised and we must now draw a line under this matter.

"We too will learn from the case. We have noted criticisms made by the Independent Regulatory Commission as to how matters could and should be improved. I will ensure any lessons that arise from the ruling will be learnt quickly and appropriately.

"It is a shame that one high-profile incident has had such a major impact. The damage of this affair is not irreparable, but as events this week have shown there are still many lessons to be learnt in the wider fight against racial abuse and discrimination of all types."

England's Under-21 team, and in particular full-back Danny Rose, suffered abuse in Serbia on Tuesday while Lazio were fined 32,500 on Thursday by UEFA for monkey chants by their fans during a Europa League tie against Tottenham.

Bernstein continued: "No player should suffer the intolerable abuse the likes of which Danny Rose was subjected to in Serbia."

There has also been criticism from black players of the Kick It Out ca mpaign, with Reading's Jason Roberts leading players stating they will not wear organisation's T-shirts during their current "Weeks of Action" as it has not been hardline in its response to the Terry and Luis Suarez abuse incidents.

Suarez was hit with an eight-match ban last season for racially abusing Manchester United's Patrice Evra, with Bernstein noting: "Many have highlighted the difference between this sanction (for Terry) and the eight matches imposed on Luis Suarez.

"In the case of Suarez, however, the commission found that repetition of the insulting language used was a further aggravating factor."

He also defended Kick It Out, saying: "This coming fortnight's 'Kick It Out' campaign is a valuable reminder of the strength of the game when addressing these issues together, and it is this positivity that our game must harness.

"I hope this time next year when we are marking 20 years of the 'Let's Kick Racism Out of Football' message we will be reflecting once again on the positive power of football to publicly oppose all forms of discrimination and ensure our sport is inclusive to all."

Kamis, 18 Oktober 2012

Onuoha: Nothing has changed

Onuoha: Serbia problem won't be solved

The Queens Park Rangers defender was the subject of abuse from Serbian supporters five-and-a-half years ago, and he was horrified by the scenes earlier this week which marred the England Under-21s qualifier in Krusevac on Tuesday.

But Onuoha has little confidence that UEFA are anyone can help the Serbian situation.

"We aren't dealing with normal people here. If we were, then they wouldn't be dishing out the comments in the first place," he told The Sun.

"You can only truly punish someone if they accept they have done wrong. I'm sure a lot of these people who gave out abuse would genuinely believe they've done nothing wrong. We know they have. But these people still live in a time warp.

"They think there is nothing wrong with their views. They believe what they are spouting is right. So do their mates and colleagues, and people sitting around them. No fine or ban is ever going to change that."

Onuoha has called on the FA to fight Dann y Rose's corner over the red card he got for kicking the ball into the crowd after the match had finished, following a torrent of abuse.

"That was ridiculous. I feel so sorry for Danny. I know the FA have a lot on their plate dealing with what happened in Serbia. But they must get Danny's red card rescinded, else it'll all be in vain," he said.

He admitted the scenes on Tuesday were reminiscent of what he went through in 2007, adding: "I remember going to the touchline and hearing a few chants, a few things said. It was only from a minority of the Serbia fans. So I turned around.

"Normally when you do that, the fans shut up. But this time they didn't. Instead it went from the minority of Serbia fans, to the majority.

"They all began chanting at me. It was quite a shock."

Kick It Out wants transparency

Terry accepted a four-match ban and 220,000 fine from the Football Association for racially abusing QPR's Anton Ferdinand.

The club are understood to have handed Terry a further fine but he will remain as club captain and will not have any further suspension.

Terry has apologised for the language he used towards Ferdinand, although he does not specifically direct his apology to Ferdinand.

Chelsea have insisted that their internal action against Terry will remain confidential, as have past disciplinary cases involving their players.

Lord Herman Ouseley, chairman of football's equality group Kick It Out, said that stance could damage Chelsea in the eyes of those people who had been waiting many months to see how the club handled the case.

Ouseley said: "I believe Chelsea need to be open about the action they have taken. A lot of people will be dissatisfied that Chelsea have not been much more up front about the standards they set and the values they have.

"If they are not prepared to say, it will further damage the trust of those people who still have suspicions about Chelsea's sincerity in dealing this matter.

"I do welcome what they have said, but they need to be saying more and doing more if they are going to win back the confidence of people who have lost trust in them rather than to sit back and be silent."

Chelsea released a statement on Thursday saying that Terry's language was not acceptable.

The statement said: "The board has taken further disciplinary action in addition to the four-match suspension and 220,000 fine imposed by the FA. In accordance with our long-standing policy, that disciplinary action will remain confidential."

Chelsea added: "Chelsea Football Club believes John Terry has made the correct decision by not appealing against the FA judgment relating to language he used at the QPR match last October.

"Chelsea also appreciates, and supports, J ohn's full apology for the language he used. The club firmly believes such language is not acceptable and fell below the standards expected of John as a Chelsea player."

The FA suspension means Terry will miss Chelsea's games against Tottenham, two against Manchester United - Premier League and Capital One Cup - and Swansea.

It also means he will not be involved in any games during Kick It Out's week of action which started today.

Terry was found guilty by the independent FA regulatory commission of calling Ferdinand a "f****** black c***" during a Barclays Premier League match between Chelsea and QPR on October 23 last year.

In July, he was cleared in Westminster Magistrates Court of a racially-aggravated public order offence.

In a statement released via his representatives Elite Management, Terry said: "After careful consideration, I have decided not to appeal against the FA judgment.

"I want to take this opportunity to apologise t o everyone for the language I used in the game against Queens Park Rangers last October.

"Although I'm disappointed with the FA judgment, I accept that the language I used, regardless of the context, is not acceptable on the football field or indeed in any walk of life."

Terry's statement continued: "As I stated in the criminal case, with the benefit of hindsight my language was clearly not an appropriate reaction to the situation for someone in my position.

"My response was below the level expected by Chelsea Football Club, and by me, and it will not happen again.

"Looking forward, I will continue to do my part in assisting the club to remove all types of discriminatory behaviour from football.

"I am extremely grateful for the consistent support of Chelsea FC, the fans and my family."

The three-man commission had ruled there was "no credible basis" for Terry's claim he had only been repeating words he thought QPR defender Ferdinand had accused him of saying, and labelled his defence "improbable, implausible and contrived".

The commission also questioned why Terry's team-mate Ashley Cole had changed his statement to give more support to Terry's story, sparking a furious response from the Chelsea and England defender who described the FA as a "bunch of t***s" in a tweet sent on October 5.

Cole issued a full apology later that day and admitted a misconduct charge which led to an FA fine on Thursday of 90,000. He too is subject to internal action from Chelsea.

Meanwhile, Chelsea will respond to the FA regarding criticism by the commission panel of club secretary Dave Barnard's evidence and involvement in the changes to Cole's statement.

The club are adamant that Barnard has done no wrong and intend to address the situation with the FA.

Chelsea take action against JT

Terry has apologised for the language he used after announcing he will not challenge the four-match ban and fine of 220,000 issued by an independent Football Association regulatory commission two weeks ago.

Terry has not however apologised directly to Ferdinand.

Chelsea said in a statement they have taken further steps against their captain, but the club are keeping their sanction secret.

The statement said: "Chelsea Football Club believes John Terry has made the correct decision by not appealing against the FA judgment relating to language he used at the QPR match last October.

"Chelsea also appreciates, and supports, John's full apology for the language he used. The club firmly believes such language is not acceptable and fell below the standards expected of John as a Chelsea player.

"The board has conducted its own investigation into the matter, and considered the various issues involved. The board has taken further disciplinary act ion in addition to the four-match suspension and 220,000 fine imposed by the FA. In accordance with our long-standing policy, that disciplinary action will remain confidential."

The FA suspension means Terry will miss Chelsea's games against Tottenham, Manchester United - both in the Premier League and Capital One Cup - and Swansea.

Chelsea added: "Chelsea enjoys support all over the world. We have players and supporters from many different countries and cultures and our club is committed to eradicating all forms of discriminatory behaviour. John is fully committed to continue supporting that ongoing work."

Terry was found guilty by the FA commission of calling Ferdinand a "f****** black c***" during a Barclays Premier League match between Chelsea and QPR on October 23 last year.

He had earlier been cleared in magistrates court of a racially-motivated public order offence.

In a statement released via his representatives Elite Management, Te rry said: "After careful consideration, I have decided not to appeal against the FA judgment.

"I want to take this opportunity to apologise to everyone for the language I used in the game against Queens Park Rangers last October.

"Although I'm disappointed with the FA judgment, I accept that the language I used, regardless of the context, is not acceptable on the football field or indeed in any walk of life."

Terry's statement continued: "As I stated in the criminal case, with the benefit of hindsight my language was clearly not an appropriate reaction to the situation for someone in my position.

"My response was below the level expected by Chelsea Football Club, and by me, and it will not happen again.

"Looking forward, I will continue to do my part in assisting the club to remove all types of discriminatory behaviour from football.

"I am extremely grateful for the consistent support of Chelsea FC, the fans and my family."

Th e three-man panel had ruled there was "no credible basis" for Terry's claim he had only been repeating words he thought QPR defender Ferdinand had accused him of saying, and labelled his defence "improbable, implausible and contrived".

The commission also questioned why Terry's team-mate Ashley Cole had changed his statement to give more support to Terry's story, sparking a furious response from the Chelsea and England defender who described the FA as a "bunch of t***s" in a tweet sent on October 5.

Cole issued a full apology later that day and has since admitted a misconduct charge.

Taarabt urges patient approach

Taarabt: Pleading for patience

Real Madrid midfielder Esteban Granero and Marseille utility player Stephane Mbia are among a number of players who arrived at Loftus Road over the summer who have little experience of the English game.

Samba Diakite also took time to adjust to the pace of the Premier League following his January move from French side Nancy and Taarabt has urged patience to be exercised.

"We have a lot of players it's true but we have foreign players who have not yet adapted to English football," the Moroccan told the Fulham and Hammersmith Chronicle.

"For Esteban he tries to get the ball down and play it there - but it has been difficult and we need more time."

QPR entertain Everton on Sunday, with Mark Hughes' side looking to secure their first league win of the season at the eighth attempt.

Rabu, 17 Oktober 2012

Terry deadline fast approaching

Terry: Has been urged to accept punishment by Taylor

Terry and his advisers have had two weeks to study the full written reasons of the decision by an FA independent regulatory commission.

An appeal by Terry, who was also fined 220,000, would, however, come as a surprise given that the panel labelled his defence 'improbable, implausible and contrived'.

It would also mean prolonging the scandal which has run for just a week short of a full year, and provided numerous negative headlines not just for the player but for the whole of English football.

Professional Footballers' Association chief executive Gordon Taylor wants Terry to accept the punishment.

He said: "I would like the situation to be ended and people learn from it and move on.

"It is a decision for John and his advisers but my preference would be now to accept what has gone on, and that things were said which shouldn't have been said.

"Sorry is the hardest word to say but we have got to learn from it and move on.

"To get reconciliation, people have to accept what they have done is wrong, and there has to be some reconciliation because it is causing the game to implode from within. It has caused division among black players and among white players."

Those within the game will also be studying Chelsea's response closely - the club said they would wait until the end of the legal process before commenting.

They have, however, defended club secretary Dave Barnard, whose actions in asking for a significant change to an Ashley Cole statement backing Terry's version of events was questioned by the panel.

The panel said the Chelsea captain, 31, 'is not a racist' but were 'satisfied' his comments were used as an insult.

The three-man panel said there was 'no credible basis' for Terry's claim he had only been repeating words he thought QPR defender Ferdinand had accused him of saying.

Kick It Out seeks fans' feedback

Neville: Proud to support the campaign

The 'Tackling Discrimination' consultation will mark the start of Kick It Out's annual One Game, One Community weeks of action (18-29 October), supported by players, managers, coaches and administrators at amateur and elite level, as the charity enters its 20th year.

The findings of the fan consultation will help form a blueprint for tackling discrimination over the coming seasons.

Lord Herman Ouseley, Chair of Kick It Out, said: "At a time when discrimination is high up the football agenda, it is easy for fans and players to forget the great strides made over the last 20 years in helping to eradicate it. But there is still a long way to go. We are launching this important dialogue with football fans to help set out how we move forward to achieve a zero tolerance approach to discrimination in all its forms, at all levels of the game.

"The One Game, One Community weeks of action provide a focal point for everyone connected to football, from support ers to players, to stand up against discrimination in all its forms."

The Tackling Discrimination fan survey, hosted by Populus and developed in partnership with key fans groups, will run during the current football season and can be accessed here.

It covers a range of topics from how to improve reporting of abusive behaviour and enforcement in grounds, to combating abusive behaviour on social media. Fans have the chance to suggest what more could be done by clubs and football authorities to help stop all types of discrimination. Kick It Out will also engage with players during this period to canvass their opinions.

PFA Chairman Clarke Carlisle welcomed the move, saying: "The responsible majority of fans in this country are on board with stamping out discrimination, and want more to be done.

"They are a powerful voice in football and this survey gives them a chance to have their say.

"We want to make sure we tackle the tiny minority for who m the healthy rivalries and passion that make the game great, tip over into unacceptable prejudice and hatred."

Everton captain Phil Neville said: "There is no place for any form of abuse and discrimination in football. I'm proud to support the One Game, One Community weeks of action campaign and this important consultation with fans.

"After all the progress made so far in tackling abuse, we cannot sit back, we must ensure that all forms of discrimination are made unacceptable."

Weeks of action

The One Game, One Community weeks of action period is a platform for all 92 professional football clubs across England and Wales to show their support for the anti-discrimination campaign and to promote the club's own equality events and activities. Every professional football club has nominated a home fixture as its own day of action. In addition to these fixtures, events and activities will be taking place at schools, prisons, libraries, com munity clubs and at grass roots level all over the country.

The campaign also has support and commitment from the Kick It Out XI, comprised of some of the game's male and female talents, past and present, who have demonstrated a desire to make football accessible and open to anyone that wants to get involved.

About Kick It Out

Kick It Out is a charity funded by the FA, the PFA and the Premier League and has been at the forefront of anti-discrimination campaigning and education work for two decades, working all year round with professional and amateur clubs at all levels of the game. This work includes helping clubs achieve the Equality Standard, a three-tiered framework in recognition of their efforts to improve diversity and tackle prejudice, both internally and externally.

Selasa, 16 Oktober 2012

Fernandes: Park needs time

Park: Has struggled to make an impact at QPR

The former Manchester United midfielder was made captain by manager Mark Hughes at the start of his debut campaign at Loftus Road, but the 31 year-old has been the subject of much criticism after failing to inspire a club that now finds itself rooted to the foot of the Premier League table.

One of those critics is former Hoops player Lee Cook, who believes Park is not trying as hard as he did during his stint at Old Trafford.

"Every time I saw Park at United, he was a workhorse. For me, he doesn't seem to be working as hard as he did there," he told The Sun.

However, Fernandes has defended the South Korean and has asked for the player to be given more time.

"It's a new experience for him in that he's never played so much (at Manchester United)," the Malaysian entrepreneur told Yonhap News Agency.

"He also has to adjust to new players. I am not the sort of person that's going to write people off after six or seven games."

Minggu, 14 Oktober 2012

Fernandes reiterates Hughes backing

Hughes: Job is safe, says Fernandes

Rangers have yet to win in the league this season and have taken just two points from their opening seven games.

The run of form has led to speculation over Hughes' future at Loftus Road, but Fernandes has backed the Welshman to turn things around.

"If the team was playing badly, if the dressing room was dispirited then you would have to say something's not right, but the team is playing well," Fernandes told Sky Sports News. "We have given away goals and we have critical injuries in critical places.

"Unfortunately or fortunately we are a higher profile club, we are five points away from being in the middle and you don't see the other clubs getting the kind of pressure we're getting but that comes with the territory.

"So no panic. Mark's done it in Fulham, he's done it in Blackburn and I have got to say even at Man City the core championship side were players Mark brought in.

"So he has my full confidence and I hope I am proven right in a big way that I can answer all these critics and armchair critics."

Jumat, 12 Oktober 2012

Hill: Hughes has players' support

Hill: Support for under-pressure Hughes

Hughes has yet to see his side win in the Premier League this season and Rangers sit bottom of the table despite an influx of big-name signings over the course of the summer.

Despite their meagre tally of only two points, QPR's chairman Tony Fernandes has backed Hughes and Hill has revealed the players also believe the Welshman will turn things around.

"Everybody on the inside is pulling in the same direction and trying to get the result we need," he told the Fulham Chronicle.

"The gaffer's confident he can turn things around - he wouldn't be here if he wasn't. He's still got the full support of all the boys. We're fully behind him and the staff."

The 33-year-old defender likened Hughes' situation to that of Tottenham boss Andre Villas-Boas.

The Spurs manager was under intense early pressure after taking over at White Hart Lane in July and starting the season slowly.

But following a string of good results, including a 3-2 vict ory over Manchester United at Old Trafford, Villas-Boas is now much more comfortable and Hill feels the same could be said of Hughes in a month's time.

"If you have three or four bad results, people from outside the club start writing things and pointing fingers," he said.

"If you look at the Tottenham manager three or four weeks ago, everyone was saying he was a bad manager. All of a sudden he gets a few results and nothing is said."

Kamis, 11 Oktober 2012

Triesman blasts Terry ban

Terry: Banned for four matches

Chelsea captain Terry was handed the suspension and a 220,000 fine after being found guilty of using a racist slur towards Anton Ferdinand by an independent FA regulatory commission.

The ban was half of that given to Liverpool striker Luis Suarez for racially abusing Manchester United defender Patrice Evra.

The FA commission said Terry had been given a lesser ban because the "racist insult was issued only once", as opposed to repeated use by Suarez.

But Lord Triesman told the BBC: "It may be when you look at all the detail they thought there were reasons for [it]. I can't see it."

Terry is due to decide during the international break whether to appeal his guilty verdict.

Lord Triesman added: "He's within his rights to appeal. My own view is that it would be more sensible to apologise and accept it's not a good standard," he said.

"I just don't believe in this day and age that anybody can think that it's okay, and that you don' t owe an apology, not least to the other player."

Taarabt: Results will improve

Taarabt: Confident QPR can get themselves out of trouble

The London outfit have endured a difficult start to the season and have yet to win in the Premier League putting pressure on R's boss Mark Hughes.

QPR face high-flying Everton after the international break and Taarabt believes they have the quality in the squad to get out of trouble at the wrong end of the table.

"We have two weeks where we have to work hard, focus and, hopefully, we can get then our first win of the season against Everton," Taarabt told the club's official website.

"You can see that we've got the quality in the group. We have a lot of good players - but I just think we have to start games better. If you are going behind all of the time, it's very difficult.

"I know we keep saying it, but we haven't had the same starting eleven twice this season. Every game, someone gets injured.

"For the manager it's really difficult, because when he makes substitutions, it's not for tactical reasons but for injuries."

Taarab t has called on his team-mates to stand up and be counted and has vowed to try and be a leader in the side.

"It's time for us to stand up and be counted. That's what I'm trying to do," added Taarabt.

"Now I have to win games for my team.

"I know I have the ability to help the team get our first win. I'm going to try and do that and be a leader.

"We just want to win games. I think we'll be fine when we start to do that."

Taarabt has scored in QPR's last two games against West Ham and West Brom, but the Moroccan admits the goals mean little if they are not picking up results.

"I was pleased with the goals, but it's more important to win games," continued Taarabt "At the moment, we aren't doing that.

"Scoring is good for my confidence, but it would be better if I scored and we won.

"We just need to start winning games and going up the table, bit by bit. Then I'll be more happy."

Selasa, 09 Oktober 2012

Wycombe sign QPR teen on loan

Andrade: Joins Chairboys

Andrade, 19, came through the youth system at Loftus Road and made his professional debut in a 3-1 victory over Preston in November 2010.

Wanderers caretaker boss Gareth Ainsworth said: "I know Bruno from my time at QPR and he's an exciting young winger.

"Hopefully his signing will add to our attacking prowess and I look forward to seeing him in a Wycombe shirt."

Andrade is available for Tuesday's Johnstone's Paint Trophy second-round tie at Portsmouth.

Senin, 08 Oktober 2012

Fernandes standing by Hughes

Hughes: Maintains the faith of Fernandes

Rangers went into the international break rooted to the foot of the Barclays Premier League, having crashed to defeat at West Brom on Saturday.

They have taken just two points from their opening seven games and have also been knocked out of the Capital One Cup, leading to calls from some fans for manager Hughes to be sacked and replaced with former Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp.

But Fernandes told talkSPORT on Monday morning: "Of course, we need a couple of results. But we have to be real.

"You could be Sir Matt Busby, Sir Alex Ferguson, or whoever the greatest manager is.

"But when you're suddenly playing with four centre-backs and you haven't had the stability of a defence - every game he's had to change, put people out of position - we're going to struggle a bit."

Fernandes, who helped bankroll the signing of 12 new players this summer, added: "I was looking at the table today.

"Nobody is panicking here, certainly not my self. We've been a bit unlucky.

"It takes time for people to gel together. There were different levels of fitnesses and, unfortunately, we were beset with injuries.

"But if you look at how we've played - bar the Swansea game - there hasn't been a team that really outplayed us.

"We just have to be patient, I have full faith in Mark and the team and the coaching staff."

Fernandes became majority shareholder just over a year ago at QPR, who sacked manager Neil Warnock in January.

"We've only been around for one year," he said.

"Rome can't be built in a day and I'm not a short-term person, and we need stability more than anything."

Asked about the increasing demand for the club to send an SOS to former Tottenham boss Redknapp, Fernandes said: "Many people have told me that I should lead the board.

"When you go down to Loftus Road, fans there are very reasonable and they understand what we're trying to build and I don't thin k anyone wants an unstable situation.

"So I think the fans are behind what we're doing.

"But we can't make everyone happy - that's life.

"We're on a mission, we're on a vision and we have to keep to that project and keep calm and have faith that what we're doing will all turn right."

Nelsen lays down the law

Nelsen: Demands more from QPR

Rangers owner Tony Fernandes has given his backing to under-fire Hughes - the second time he has done so in a week - despite the club being bottom of the Premier League with two points from their opening seven games.

But Nelsen knows QPR have to show a vast improvement after poor defending contributed to yesterday's 3-2 defeat at West Brom.

Nelsen said: "We have to live up to expectations. It's our livelihoods, we have to win games.

"It takes time to gel and injuries to players in key positions haven't helped.

"The only real bright spot for us is that at least this run is happening now. There's a long way to go yet.

"But we know each and every one of us have got to be a lot better. We're letting the manager down here.

"We just have to win matches. I think every player has let the manager down at some stage this season."

Nelsen is aware QPR have to cut out the soft goals which led to their downfall against the high-flyin g Baggies, before a second-half revival almost earned them a point.

He said: "It doesn't matter how good our second half was. We conceded two very soft goals at the start.

"You just can't concede those sort of goals at this level. You get punished and it leaves us with a mountain to climb after that.

"It took us until the second half to play to our potential. You just can't do that in this league. We're leaving ourselves too much to do.

"It gives us a mountain to climb. Teams aren't really earning their goals against us to tell the truth.

"We have to start from 20 yards behind all the time. We have to remedy that and as soon as we do it'll be a lot easier to get ourselves up to win games.

"Unfortunately, we have had injuries to our wide defenders, but I don't want to make excuses."

Nelsen has also challenged midfielder Adel Taarabt to start showing the kind of impressive performance he produced against Albion, and against West Ham on Monday, on a regular basis.

He said: "He's very easy on the eye. He can create stuff out of nothing.

"With Adel, he has those flashes of brilliance which no-one else has. It's consistency with him.

"Hopefully he can string out some performances week in, week out. Then he'll be a valuable asset."

Minggu, 07 Oktober 2012

Hughes handed Fernandes backing

Hughes: Backed in the boardroom

Rangers have collected only two points from their opening seven games and again paid the price for some woeful defending during Saturday's 3-2 defeat at West Brom.

Yet Fernandes remains fully committed to supporting Hughes, who is convinced QPR's fortunes will improve once his heavily-overhauled squad has had time to bed in.

Fernandes tweeted today: "For all QPR fans. Fans who analyse properly. I am not changing anything. And all shareholders agree.

"No team except the first game [a 5-0 home defeat to Swansea] has outplayed us. We need a consistent four defenders not changing every week especially right and left back. Mark is the right man."

Fernandes added: "For all those calling for change, this is the team that outplayed Spurs and gave Chelsea a damm good game and you want change. No way."

Hughes offloaded 17 players during the close season while bringing in a dozen new faces, and has also been dogged by injuries, particularly in defence.

"I'm still learning about the group, still learning about the players I have," said Hughes.

"We had a big turnover in the summer and we all knew it was going to take time.

"Tony is a very supportive chairman and I've got great support from the shareholders.

"We've talked and discussed what could happen at the beginning of this year because we all understand it may take some time.

"But we are all fully committed to what we are trying to do.

"It is disappointing because we have showed glimpses of what we can do but we haven't been able to sustain it for 90 minutes.

"That will come. We've just got to keep working hard and cut out the mistakes."

Hughes added: "We are struggling to get a settled unit. We are having too many changes and a number of players are still carrying injuries and are not 100 per cent.

"It would be great to have a full complement of players who could complete 90 minutes.

"At the moment it seems that we can't get to that stage."

QPR were torn apart at the back during the opening 45 minutes yesterday as Albion scored twice and missed two gilt-edged chances.

Hughes admitted: "In terms of a defensive performance, it wasn't at the level it needed to be and it gives us to much to do.

"When you are going away in the Premier League, you've got to have that base and that platform that enables you to build a performance and get a result.

"I'm talking about midfield and up front as well as the back four. We've got to collectively be a lot better and stop things at source.

"We can't keep frustrating ourselves and not giving ourselves an opportunity to win games.

"If you don't, then you concede goals in the Premier League. We can't keep frustrating ourselves and not giving ourselves an opportunity to win games."

The major plus point for Hughes was the form of playmaker Adel Taarabt, who scored once and was the cre ative focal point of Rangers' performance.

He fully justified being recalled to the starting line-up for the first time since the opening day of the season and Hughes said: "I thought Adel was excellent. He deserved a starting place, scored a fantastic goal and his overall performance and determination to make things happen for us was creditable.

"I'm pleased for him because he is an important player for us and it's important he starts to show form.

"Ryan Nelsen was also outstanding at the back in terms of his commitment and determination to affect the game.

"But we need the vast majority of the team doing that."

James Morrison and Zoltan Gera put Albion in control before Taarabt reduced the arrears. Youssouf Mulumbu made it 3-1 before Esteban Granero netted Rangers' second.

Sabtu, 06 Oktober 2012

West Brom v QPR reaction

Rangers went down 3-2 at The Hawthorns and have collected only two points out of a possible 21.

James Morrison, Zoltan Gera and Youssouf Mulumbu netted for the Baggies with Adel Taarabt and Esteban Granero on target for QPR, who trailed 2-0 and 3-1.

But Hughes is convinced QPR will revive their fortunes once they stop conceding sloppy goals early in games and see their injury list shorten.

He said: "Am I still the right man? Oh yes, absolutely. We knew where we might possibly be at the beginning of the season because of the amount of changes we've made.

"We are disappointed because in a number of games we've played well and not got what we've deserved out of games.

"You've got to perform from start to finish because if you allow good teams, which West Brom are this year, any encouragement then they will take chances.

"We've got to give ourselves the chance to win games. It is disappointing because once again we have given oursel ves too much to do.

"That's the second game running we've conceded two poor goals defensively from our point of view in that initial period.

"You can't afford to do that in the Premier League because you give yourself a mountain to climb."

Hughes added: "We are six or seven games into the new season, we've got a lot of new players and a lot of injuries which are not helping us.

"Once that settles down, people will see what we can produce and we've shown glimpses of that in almost every game.

"But we need to build performances and results."

Albion are lying fourth in the table after collecting 14 points from their opening seven games.

New manager Steve Clarke is unsurprised by the start but refusing to get carried away.

He said: "I've got to be honest, I'm not over-surprised. I'm delighted and obviously 14 points is a great return from the first seven games.

"But I'm not surprised. I knew we would be competitive i n all the games we played.

"We don't get carried away with ourselves because we know what our primary objective is and we're firmly focused on that at the moment.

"It's to ensure another season in the Premier League. That's got to be the bottom line for the majority of clubs in the league."

Clarke felt Albion made harder work than they should have of securing a fourth successive home win - their best at the start to a season in the top flight since 1919.

He said: "It was probably harder than should have been. From 2-0 up we became a little bit too open.

"Defensively it was not a performance you would usually associate with us. But I think attacking-wise we played some fantastic football going forward.

"We created a lot of chances but it took us longer to close the game out than it should have done."

Baggies hold on to sink Hoops

Gera: Gets a shot away with Park in attendance

Rangers have taken only two points out of a possible 21 and they were always facing an uphill task after early goals from James Morrison and Zoltan Gera.

They showed signs of improvement after Adel Taarabt had reduced the arrears. Youssouf Mulumbu made it 3-1 before an injury-time effort from Esteban Granero again cut the deficit.

QPR defender Anton Ferdinand was booed during the first half by some Albion fans in his first appearance since the full report from the Football Association into the John Terry case was published.

Albion registered their fourth home win, their best start to a top flight season in front of their own fans since 1919.

Steve Clarke's side should have wrapped up the game in the opening half hour and could have doubled their two-goal advantage against a QPR side carved open almost at will during that spell.

Hughes' men struggled to deal with the creativity of Morrison and the pace of Shane Long with Ferdinand and Clint Hill in particular looking uncertain at the back.

But Taarabt, in his first start since the opening day of the season, dragged them back into the game and he demanded close attention from the Baggies back four.

Albion's acting skipper Jonas Olsson received a standing ovation from the home fans before kick-off after signing a new four-year contract - and his side needed only four minutes to go ahead.

Baggies leading scorer Shane Long was too quick for Hill before delivering an inviting right-wing cross. Morrison timed his run perfectly to get behind Ferdinand and direct his header back across Julio Cesar into the corner of the net.

Albion looked sharp going forward and Long missed a golden chance to double their lead in a lightning counter-attack.

Peter Odemwingie picked out the run of Morrison and his cross was perfectly weighted to find Long but from six yards out he fired over the bar.

QPR had no answer to West Brom's first touch football and a shocking error by Ferdinand gifted them their second goal after 22 minutes.

Once again Morrison supplied the ball into the danger area and Ferdinand's attempted clearance fell straight to Zoltan Gera, who made no mistake from 10 yards out.

Albion right-back Gabriel Tamas was booked for bringing down Taarabt before the QPR midfielder gave his side a lifeline with a stunning finish after 35 minutes.

Esteban Granero played the ball into the path of Taarabt on the edge of the box and he brought it under control before volleying past Ben Foster.

But Albion still threatened danger everytime they ventured forward and it needed a fine save from Cesar to deny Gera a second goal.

Peter Odemwingie's defence-splitting pass found the Hungarian international free inside the box but Cesar managed to deflect his shot past the post.

QPR skipper Park Ji-sung was booked in first half injury-time for a lunge at Gera.

Both sid es made a half-time switch with Tamas and Hill replaced by Gonzalo Jara Reyes and Armand Traore respectively.

The visitors showed attacking intent at the start of the second period and Foster held a low drive from the impressive Taarabt.

Morrison had a shot deflected wide but Albion were guilty of sloppy play.

It prompted Clarke to make a double change with strikers Romelu Lukaku and Markus Rosenberg replacing Long and Odemwingie.

Granero had the chance to level matters but sliced his shot wide after more good work by Taarabt.

But Morrison almost capped another top performance with a second goal as his 35-yard drive flashed inches wide.

With five minutes left Mulumbu made it 3-1 after exchanging passes with Jara Reyes - but QPR showed plenty of spirit and Granero reduced the gap again in injury-time with a cool finish.

West Brom v QPR preview

Odemwingie: Can face QPR

West Brom striker Peter Odemwingie has completed a three game ban for his sending-off at Fulham and is included in the squad.

But right-back Billy Jones and skipper and midfielder Chris Brunt have joined the injury list and are ruled out with knee and hamstring setbacks suffered during the 1-1 draw at Aston Villa.

Defender Steven Reid (hamstring) and number two goalkeeper Boaz Myhill (hand) are also sidelined while winger Jerome Thomas's return from a series of injury niggles has been delayed by illness.

QPR manager Mark Hughes looks set to travel with several of his defenders still struggling for fitness.

Jose Bosingwa and Anton Ferdinand are both doubts as they look to recover from hamstring problems and Armand Traore (leg) has not taken part in full training this week.

Full-back Fabio (hamstring) is definitely out as is Samba Diakite, who serves a one-match ban for his sending off at West Ham on Monday, with striker Andy Johnson ( knee) a long-term absentee.

West Brom (from): Foster, Daniels, McAuley, Olsson, Tamas, Dawson, Jara Reyes, Popov, Ridgewell, Mulumbu, Yacob, Dorrans, Morrison, El Ghanassy, Gera, Fortune, Odemwingie, Lukaku, Long, Rosenberg.

QPR (from): Green, Cesar, Onuoha, Hill, Nelsen, Ferdinand, Bosingwa, Mbia, Derry, Park, Granero, Dyer, Taarabt, Hoilett, Faurlin, Wright-Phillips, Ephraim, Mackie, Zamora, Cisse.

FA: Terry language was insulting

Terry: Banned for four games

The independent FA regulatory commission said there was "no credible basis" for Terry's claim he had only been repeating words he thought Ferdinand had accused him of saying.

In their full written reasons for the four-match ban, the commission said they were satisfied the words "f***ing black c***" were intended as an insult by Terry. He now has two weeks in which to appeal.

The commission also stated: "There are further aspects of Mr Terry's defence that the commission finds improbable, implausible and contrived, and which serve to underline and reinforce our decision.

"The commission is quite satisfied, on the balance of probabilities, that there is no credible basis for Mr Terry's defence that his use of the words 'f****** black c***' were directed at Mr Ferdinand by way of forceful rejection and/or inquiry.

"Instead, we are quite satisfied, and find on the balance of probabilities, that the offending words were said by way of insult.

"We are able to arrive at that decision without needing to make any adverse findings against Mr Terry arising out of his decision not to give evidence.

"Accordingly, the commission finds that there is 'clear and convincing' evidence."

The commission said that character references from a number of people including black players made it clear that Terry was not racially prejudiced.

"It is accepted by everyone involved in the criminal and disciplinary proceedings that Mr Terry is not a racist," added the commission.

Ashley Cole's statement supporting Terry's version, and the role played by a Chelsea club official, has also been questioned by the commission.

Terry had been cleared in Westminster Magistrates Court in July of a racially-aggravated public order offence, partly helped by the testimony of England and Chelsea team-mate Cole.

However, the commission found that there were discrepancies in Cole's initial statement to FA inte rviewers of what he heard Ferdinand say to Terry compared to later statements.

Cole did not mention the word 'black' in the initial interview with the FA on October 28. On November 3, Chelsea club secretary David Barnard asked the FA for the specific word 'black' to be inserted into Cole's witness statement, suggesting that Cole may have heard Ferdinand use the term.

The commission saw an email exchange between the FA and Barnard and said that should be regarded as "cogent new evidence".

The commission said: "These highly material issues relating to Mr Cole's evidence were not addressed by the Chief Magistrate - he clearly did not have the interview notes of the FA's interviewers, or Mr Barnard's statement before him - and they do not appear in his judgment.

"Accordingly, that material can and should properly be regarded as cogent new evidence.

"Had it been before him, the commission has no doubt that the Chief Magistrate would have examine d Mr Cole's evidence as to what he claims he heard Mr Ferdinand say to Mr Terry on the pitch very carefully indeed, or scrutinised it even more closely than he may have done."

It adds: "All of this causes the commission to have very real concerns about the accuracy of Mr Barnard's recollections, and the motivation for the assertions that he makes in his witness statement about what Mr Cole said during the FA interview of him, particularly his alleged use of the word 'black'."

Ferdinand had suffered "hateful abuse" as a result of the case but had acted with dignity, said the report.

The commission stated: "The victim impact statement of Mr Ferdinand makes it plain that he has been badly affected by the incident. He has been the subject of hateful abuse and adverse comments, but has acted with restraint and dignity."

Jumat, 05 Oktober 2012

Hughes 'happy' with Taarabt

Taarabt: A talented young man, says Hughes

The 48-year-old admitted Taarabt has stepped out of line in the past but at the moment he is happy with the contribution of the Morocco international.

Taarabt, 23, will travel to West Brom with the rest of Hughes' squad and the manager revealed guidance will always be on offer at Loftus Road.

He said: "Adel is a talented young man and that talent is recognised here, we support him but he is a young player and sometimes he makes the wrong decisions.

"There are always consequences when you do that but he is in a good place now and we are pleased with what he is producing and as a consequence we will reap the benefit on the pitch.

"Professional football is a way of life and you have to commit to that and it is fair to say that in the past Adel hasn't made the correct decisions about what he should be doing.

"But I'm very happy with what he is doing at the moment, he is training correctly, training well and having an impact. Obviously he has been injured in recent weeks so that is why I haven't been able to play him but he is back now and certainly in my thoughts for the weekend."

The former QPR captain has had his commitment called into question on a number of previous occasions but Hughes was delighted with his goalscoring contribution from the bench in the 2-1 defeat to West Ham on Monday.

"We were very pleased with what Adel produced the other night, I think he came on with a real purposeful attitude to what needed to be done at that point," he said. "He came on and made an immediate impact and was ready to perform, which is what we want from all of our players."

The former Manchester City manager would not divulge what Taarabt had done recently to flair up suggestions of discontent but when asked if it was football-related or not he said: "Probably both it is fair to say.

"He is just a young player, he is still learning the game and still understanding what it takes to be a top professional but he will get there because he has got good people around him and we will support him and make sure he gets to the level that his talent deserves."

Campbell makes Town loan move

Campbell: Relishing opportunity

Campbell will stay at Portman Road until Saturday January 5 and could feature in the squad to face Cardiff on Saturday evening.

The 30-year-old joined Rangers in August 2011 but having scored just once in 12 appearances last term he is yet to feature for Mark Hughes' side this season.

Campbell told Town's official website: "I knew there was interest from Ipswich and working with Paul [Jewell] at this great club was something that really interested me.

"I'm fit and raring to go if called upon [against Cardiff]. Obviously I haven't played much this season but I've been playing reserve games, so I am match fit and I'm ready to go out there and give 100 per cent.

"That's something that hopefully the fans will see in me, that I will always give my all out on the pitch and I'm looking forward to getting started with Ipswich."

MH: Quality will shine through

Hughes: Confident his side will come good

Hughes has seen his side collect just two points so far this campaign and will be hoping to add to that total when QPR travel to West Brom on Saturday.

Hughes maintains his players have performed well in the majority of the six Barclays Premier League matches they have competed in so far, even if the results have not reflected that.

"The one emotion that we are all displaying is a little bit of frustration to be perfectly honest," he said.

"We know that in the building we have got quality and we have displayed that in a number of games, most noticeably against Man City, Chelsea and Tottenham where we played exceptionally well but only got one point for our efforts.

"So we know we can compete in this league, at the moment we are finding it difficult to get performances in line with results and as a consequence we haven't picked up as many points as we would have liked."

There have already been suggestions that Rangers chairman Tony Fe rnandes may be looking to replace Hughes but the former Manchester City boss remains positive on his relationship with the Malaysian businessman.

He said: "We are six games into a very long season, we understand what was the requirement at the end of the season and that hasn't changed.

"We are working to the right level - I've got great support here, a great relationship with Tony and Amit (Bhatia, vice-chairman) and everyone at the club and that will continue.

"They understand how I work, they know that I have experience in these situations and in this league and long term we will take this club forward."

Fernandes has bankrolled a number of big-name signings since taking charge at Loftus Road and Hughes reckons once he can get the new-look squad on the same wavelength, better results will follow.

He said: "There is real belief in what we are doing, we understand what is required, it was always going to take a little bit of time because we have got a lot of players that are new in terms of the group - we are still getting to know strengths and weaknesses and once we get more games under our belts we will be fine.

"But at the moment we are just frustrated because we haven't got as many points as we thought we would have done at this point."

Hughes has backed his players to start picking up league wins sooner rather than later as he looks to avoid a repeat of last season, which saw QPR survive on the final day of the season despite a 3-2 defeat at Manchester City.

The 48-year-old also believes key injuries have hampered his team selection in the opening weeks of the season, a trend that looks set to continue at the Hawthorns with Andrew Johnson, Anton Ferdinand, Armand Traore, Fabio and Jose Bosingwa all likely to be missing.

"It has been difficult really because we have injuries as well which has stopped me picking the side I want," he said.

"Obviously we had players coming i n late in the window as well, some were at a decent level of fitness and some weren't so we are trying to cope with getting players and the group up to a level that is consistent.

"But that will come...we have been encouraged by what we have produced in a number of games and we have been disappointed in a couple of games but we know we have the capability to win games in the Premier League and it is just a matter of time."

Jol hits back at Zamora claims

Jol: Claims sour grapes from former striker Zamora

The 31-year-old was sold to QPR at the end of January's transfer window after a period in which reports frequently suggested he did not get on with the former Tottenham boss.

Zamora broke his silence this week and claimed he was not the only one to have a problem with Jol, who was surprised that his former charge decided to make such comments.

"It is probably sour grapes," Jol said when asked about it on Friday. "I think nothing is what it seems. Everyone knows me. The players know me so one player will say this, another player will say that.

"It doesn't matter. I don't care. For me, the most important thing is we get the results so you will have to ask the players.

"If they do well and work hard, I try to get a good relationship with them. If not, I don't.

"Insiders here know that this probably started after two weeks of me being here.

"There was a few leaks in the paper and I asked him and he said 'no, it wasn't me'. I knew it was him and his agent 100 per cent.

"He said 'no, it wasn't me, I hate the press'. He hated defence and later said he hated crosses as well and that was the moment I thought 'maybe it is better to sell' and that is what we did."

Zamora was followed out of the club this summer by a number of key players, including Mousa Dembele, Clint Dempsey, Danny Murphy, Andrew Johnson and Dickson Etuhu.

Asked if he had an issue with any of those players, the normally-reserved Fulham boss added: "If you take Clint Dempsey, it is different from Mousa Dembele.

"Mousa was phoning me after his move and thanking me for everything. Every player is different.

"Clint wanted to move so then the relationship would not be great. Danny Murphy I wanted to keep so ask him. There were no issues at all.

"With Bobby it started after a couple of weeks. Everybody knew and now he has moved on.

"I don't think it is typically English to make comments after yea r or eight months.

"We moved on and it was not easy because I had to get another number nine.

"We did because (Pavel) Pogrebnyak scored as many goals in a couple of weeks as my other strikers did in six months.

"Later we got (Dimitar) Berbatov, who was probably our best signing ever, so people who know us, know Fulham and know me, knew it was quite a challenge here. In hindsight, you could say we managed to do well."

Zamora's comments were the main talking point at Friday's press conference previewing Sunday's clash with Southampton.

Jol can welcome back Kieran Richardson from injury for the match but will have to do without Berbatov, Mahamadou Diarra and Simon Davies.

Mladen Petric is also a doubt for the trip to St Mary's after picking up an injury on Friday.

"Dimi is still on the list so I don't think he will play," he said. "I am 90 per cent certain he won't.

"Diarra is still injured, Simon Davies had hip surgery so will be out for months and Petric will be a little doubt because he had a little problem with his calf today so had to drop out."