Beat Around the Bush

By Chris Crees LOVE them or loathe them, internet football message boards and forums are here to stay. For all matters QPR, look no further than the excellent Vital QPR, LoftForWords, We Are The Rangers Boyz and the long-standing but ever popular 606 mess

By Chris Crees

LOVE them or loathe them, internet football message boards and forums are here to stay. For all matters QPR, look no further than the excellent Vital QPR, LoftForWords, We Are The Rangers Boyz and the long-standing but ever popular 606 message board on the BBC.

There's certainly a selection of personalities of all ages to be found sitting invisibly behind their dusty monitors and sounding off, ranging from the blind ridiculous to those who often seem to find the facts on a regular basis.

Some of the speculation that appears on every forum is a must read. Where else can you read a comment from a mother who used to work with the third cousin's daughter, who overheard a conversation in Paladini's office, regarding an imminent signing?


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Before the start of the 2008/09 season, I ran an article on one site and asked everybody to name the players QPR had been linked with pre-season and I stopped counting after 64 had been reached.

From that list, Gorkss, Cook, Oastler and much later and under a new manager, Routledge signed. I'm still waiting for Vieri!

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It's not all laughing and joking around though. Some of the match reports from those in attendance are truly excellent and unbiased and this proves enlightening for Rs fans living in countries like New Zealand, UAE, Spain, Ireland and Sweden.

The reports alone create an awful lot of debate and frankly, Dexter Blackstock, before his departure, probably warranted his own page last season with constant debate over whether he should play, not play, move on or stay put.

It could be argued that today's national press actually picks up some of their gossip from scouring the forums and message boards, as there certainly seems to be more speculation over transfers in the papers these days than there was before the forums took off.

Then of course, there are the players and club staff themselves. I wonder if they actually read or even contribute to the forums in a clever disguise? If I were a betting man, I'd say yes they certainly do.

Either way, if debating face-to-face in a pub is not for you, it's certainly worth registering with a forum and joining in the fun and banter in the comfort of your own home. You're more likely to be heard and it's cheaper too!

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