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Nasser El Khayati: QPR must secure a play-off spot at the very least next season

PUBLISHED: 07:00 04 May 2016 | UPDATED: 12:28 04 May 2016

Nasser El Khayati expects QPR to secure at least a top-six finish next season

Nasser El Khayati expects QPR to secure at least a top-six finish next season

Archant

Nasser El Khayati says that reaching the play-offs should be a “minimum aim” for QPR next season.

After being tipped to challenge for promotion back in August, the Rs soon fell away from the promotion race not long after, and were instead forced to concentrate on consolidation after relegation from the top flight last term.

And the 27-year-old forward, who joined from Burton Albion in February, has made it clear what he expects the Rs to achieve in the 2016-17 campaign.

He told the Times: “Personally, in my opinion that should be a minimum aim [to reach the play-offs next season].

“There is a lot of quality in this team and we are only going to get better with time, I am sure of that.

“I knew when I joined this club that sooner rather than later the ambition was to be back in the Premier League - after all this is Queens Park Rangers.”

El Khayati enjoyed a productive year-at the Brewers, helping them first earn promotion to League One and the summit of the division this term.

And the former PSV Eindhoven youngster pinpoints most of that success down to one critical factor.

He added: “At Burton Albion our best strength is that we were a team, maybe we didn’t have the best quality compared to our opponents, but because we were a team, look what we achieved and still they are fighting for promotion there now.

“The gaffer did a good job there, and getting all that all together. In my opinion that [team bond] is more important than quality. Quality is a second thing, so if you have both you can be very successful.”

With that in mind El Khayati believes that the Rs can enjoy similiar success under Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink - who also managed him at Burton - despite another summer of huge upheaval expected to come at Loftus Road, with nine players out of contract.

“There are a few players whose contracts are ending, but I don’t think it’s going to destroy the atmosphere around the place,” maintained El Khayati.

“The basics are already in place now and we will take that into next season.

“Most of the boys who are here now will be here next season, and we will make the new signings feel welcome and we will move on from there. It’s going to be even better than now.”

Elsewhere, El Khayati, who is eyeing a call-up to the Morocco national team, says that his style of play is better suited to the Championship as opposed to the lower leagues.

He said: “This level definitely suits me better, because my type of game is playing from the back.

“In the lower leagues it is different and more direct, so this division is a lot better for me to develop.”

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