On the Ball

With Richard Langley LAST week Paulo Sousa became the sixth manager in 18 months to leave the doors of Loftus Road. With all the expectation that surrounded his arrival it s a shame to see him depart, without being given a chance for us all to see how his

With Richard Langley

LAST week Paulo Sousa became the sixth manager in 18 months to leave the doors of Loftus Road. With all the expectation that surrounded his arrival it's a shame to see him depart, without being given a chance for us all to see how his football philosophies have rubbed off on the boys and their way of playing.

With the end of the season only weeks away and all hopes of the play-offs evaporated, you might expect a typical end of season fixture, resulting in a lack of focus and commitment from players who will have their minds on the holidays that await them - so when I saw QPR fall behind 2-0 to Sheffield Wednesday I thought my theory was on the way to being proved correct.

QPR fought back to win this fixture with goals from Gavin Mahon, Damion Stewart and, most notably, Rowan Vine - his first goal after such a long time out. Rowan's timely return went some way towards distracting us from the fact that Dexter Blackstock is out on loan with Nottingham Forest.


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I hope Rowan has a part to play in the push for the Premier League next year, but when key players like Dexter are being sent out on loan, you would imagine that the board have plans for another influx of players at the start of the season.

I really do believe that the comeback was a reflection of the man at the helm right now. Caretaker manager Gareth Ainsworth has a never say die attitude - when you are training or playing with him, as I did, you find it infectious.

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He wouldn't let you get away with giving less than 100 per cent. Even when things are looking bleak he's always pushing and encouraging everyone around him.

A genuine, selfless character who wants the best for all those he comes into contact with, I am sure Gareth will finish the season without allowing standards to drop.

When it comes to taking QPR to the next level, or securing a top six finish, I believe we need someone with more experience than Gareth, but there is no doubt that you need someone like him around the place to get the most out of the team.

If QPR are to progress in the future, faith and patience will be a necessity when they eventually agree on finding the right man for the job.

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