Why QPR chairman should look beyond Harry Redknapp

15:38 23 November 2012

Queens Park Rangers chairman Tony Fernandes

Queens Park Rangers chairman Tony Fernandes

PA Wire/Press Association Images

“A fool and his money are soon parted”, the saying goes, and rarely has it been more applicable to any individual than Tony Fernandes.

When the Malaysian businessman took over QPR in August 2011, the general consensus was that his stewardship of the club could only be an improvement on the unpopular regime of Flavio Briatore and Bernie Ecclestone.

Fernandes has made different mistakes to Briatore and Ecclestone. But, just like his predecessors, he appears unwilling to learn from them, or incapable of doing so.

The Rangers chairman has sanctioned enormous spending sprees – on wages if not actual transfer fees – in each window since he took over. That gross irresponsibility is the main reason that the club find themselves in a perilous position at the foot of the Premier League.

Fernandes bandies around the buzzword ‘stability’ an awful lot, yet he does not seem to understand its meaning.

At least half of the players QPR signed last summer were not needed. Why did Mark Hughes want two goalkeepers? Or three midfielders? Or an ageing, average centre-forward to replace perfectly decent back-up strikers like Heidar Helguson and DJ Campbell?

It was inevitable that such an unnecessary recruitment drive would lead to turmoil – poor team spirit and a manager with no notion of his best side.

But Fernandes is so clueless about football that he totally embraces the Sky Sports mantra: signing another player is always good news because it shows ‘ambition’ and ‘healthy competition’ for places.

Apart from the scale of Rangers’ frenzied spending, questions need to be asked about the area in which their net has been spread. Almost without exception, all their recruits have joined from bigger clubs than QPR.

How motivated can the likes of Esteban Granero, Julio Cesar and Park Ji-Sung be about playing at Loftus Road? Why do Rangers appear to have no interest in attracting younger, hungrier players who would relish the step up?

Given these blunders, it makes no sense to turn to Harry Redknapp – the epitome of a manager who is only interested in buying and selling. But mostly in buying – and usually ageing players with limited resale value.

It’s hard to imagine that if – as all indications suggest – Redknapp takes over the manager’s chair in the near future, January will not see more of the same in a desperate attempt to rescue Rangers’ Premier League status.

And here’s the nub of the problem. For many years now, those in charge it QPR have only ever considered the short-term.

Most fans are terrified at the prospect of relegation – and understandably so. However, Newcastle and West Ham are both good examples of clubs that dropped out of the Premier League in recent years and returned in far better shape.

But, while the consequences of going down are likely to be painful, the consequences of going down with Redknapp in charge could well be devastating.

Despite the tag of miracle-worker that Redknapp – aided by his many friends in the media – likes to attach to himself, there is no guarantee that he will keep Rangers up.

He failed to save Southampton in 2005 and, more pertinently, failed to get them anywhere near challenging for promotion before jumping ship to rejoin Portsmouth.

Ah yes, Portsmouth. The club that are now in League One and almost went out of business during the summer after Redknapp’s years in charge had saddled them with a colossal wage bill.

The reality is that QPR could find themselves in the Championship at the start of next season and they need to think about who is best equipped to rebuild the club in those circumstances, should the worst happen.

My personal preference would be to move for a younger, up and coming manager – someone with a good track record who appears to get the best out of his players while recruiting wisely. Gus Poyet or Malky Mackay would both be high on my list.

And, before anyone dismisses those names due to a lack of top-flight experience, just consider that Gerry Francis and Ian Holloway – two of the club’s most successful managers in recent times – had only Bristol Rovers on their CVs before they were appointed.

Fernandes never bothered looking around for a replacement after he fired Neil Warnock. It would be nice to think he has learned from that mistake, rather than eagerly entrusting his credit card to Redknapp.

Related articles

Sign up for our news alerts today!

Our editors' picks for the day's top news delivered to your inbox or phone.

Sign up for email alerts Sign up for mobile alerts
1
2 3 4 5 6
7

Submit your QPR player ratings

Latest QPR news

QPR Director of Football Les Ferdinand (left), England manager Roy Hodgson (centre) and QPR chairman Tony Fernandes at Loftus Road.

QPR chairman Tony Fernandes says the lack of black managers in England was not part of his decision to appoint Chris Ramsey as manager.

Matt Phillips of QPR   (Photo by Ian Walton/Getty Images)

QPR wide man Matty Phillips is delighted to be back in and around the R’s squad under Chris Ramsey.

QPR chairman Tony Fernandes

With Mark Hughes and Harry Redknapp now in the past, QPR chairman Tony Fernandes says he wants to find the right balance when it comes to signing players.

Fraizer Campbell of Crystal Palace against Liverpool .  (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)

Crystal Palace striker Fraizer Campbell is set to miss the Eagles’ trip to West Ham on Saturday with a hamstring injury.

Latest Stories from SNAP.PA

Russell Tovey has admitted he didn’t realise he was being offered the lead in Banished at first.

Read more

The Sherlock actress says she won’t hear a word said against her famous co-stars.

Read more

The actress is excited that Matt Damon and Paul Greengrass are making another Bourne movie, and hopes to get in on the act.

Read more

Promoted content

A look at one of our previous Design Fairs

Chelsea Old Town Hall will be the venue for the renowned Desire Fair from 6-8 March 2015. This stunning mixed media jewellery and silversmithing event where visitors can purchase direct from contemporary designer makers selected from the best in the UK is an event not to be missed.

Take our quiz and find out!

A survey conducted last year revealed that Britain is the fourth sexiest country in the world, with the UK sex toy industry worth an estimated £250 million a year.

What is this?

Near You Now

Don't Miss...

QPR Transfer News

Thursday, February 26, 2015
QPR Director of Football Les Ferdinand (left), England manager Roy Hodgson (centre) and QPR chairman Tony Fernandes at Loftus Road.

QPR chairman Tony Fernandes says the lack of black managers in England was not part of his decision to appoint Chris Ramsey as manager.

Read more
Thursday, February 26, 2015
Matt Phillips of QPR   (Photo by Ian Walton/Getty Images)

QPR wide man Matty Phillips is delighted to be back in and around the R’s squad under Chris Ramsey.

Read more
Thursday, February 26, 2015
QPR chairman Tony Fernandes

With Mark Hughes and Harry Redknapp now in the past, QPR chairman Tony Fernandes says he wants to find the right balance when it comes to signing players.

Read more
Wednesday, February 25, 2015
Fraizer Campbell of Crystal Palace against Liverpool .  (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)

Crystal Palace striker Fraizer Campbell is set to miss the Eagles’ trip to West Ham on Saturday with a hamstring injury.

Read more