QPR chief executive drops stadium hint

Beard reveals new ground would be part of a wider ‘regeneration project’ in Shepherd’s Bush

Shepherd’s Bush is likely to be the favoured area for a new QPR home ground, club chief executive Phil Beard has confirmed.

QPR owner Tony Fernandes revealed this week that the club are looking at several locations for a new stadium in west London, and is known to favour areas adjacent to Loftus Road and the ‘potential’ offered by Westfield Shopping Centre next to White City station.

Beard reiterated that stadium plans remain part of QPR’s long-term ambitions, and said that a new ground would be incorporated into a wider regeneration scheme in the area.

“I would say we are looking at the area around Shepherd’s Bush, there are four or five opportunities that we are looking at,” Beard told London24.com.

“But that’s actually part of a bigger picture. We’re not just looking at building a new football stadium, I think the days of doing that are probably gone. What you have to do is build a venue where the stadium is the core but there are other things there as well.

“If you look at the short, medium and long-term ambitions for the club, the short-term is to stay in the Premier League this season and beyond, gain some stability.

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“Beyond that, and something which is not as important in the short or medium term, is building a new stadium as part of a regeneration project.

“Our 100 per cent focus is on staying in the best league in the world, because that will allow us to kick on. Everything else we do comes second in relation to that priority to stay in the Premier League.”

Before QPR contemplate events beyond the end of this season they plan to further strengthen their squad during January – although Beard conceded that the upcoming transfer window may not be quite as nerve-shredding as the last.

“The aim is to build a squad which has strength in depth, we want to keep on developing it.,” he added. “January will be a busy period but we will be better prepared than we were in the summer.

“In August the takeover happened right in the middle of the transfer window, so I’ll be disappointed if we are as manic.

“We have to spread the net. Up until it came into the Premier League the club hadn’t had significant scouting, that’s one of the things we are developing very quickly.”

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