QPR new boy will boost promotion challenge, says Johnson

Andy Johnson scored his second goal of the season for QPR at Bolton Wanderers on Saturday

Andy Johnson scored his second goal of the season for QPR at Bolton Wanderers on Saturday - Credit: PA Archive/Press Association Images

Andy Johnson believes that the signing of winger Matt Phillips will give QPR vital added firepower as they seek to step up their promotion challenge.

Matt Phillips joined QPR from Blackpool this week

Matt Phillips joined QPR from Blackpool this week - Credit: PA Wire/Press Association Images

Phillips joined Rangers from Blackpool for £5 million on Friday, although he missed his new side’s 1-0 Championship win at Bolton on Saturday as he recovers from an arm operation.

And striker Johnson, who scored the only goal of the game at the Reebok Stadium, believes that Phillips will boost a promotion bid that already appears to be gathering pace.

“We want more firepower, it is good competition and great for the team,” said Johnson. “Adding players like that can only help. I’ve not seen loads of him but I’ve heard he’s a top player and the gaffer is an expert in bringing in top players.

“I’m sure he will be a great addition to the squad. There is only me, Bobby [Zamora] and Charlie [Austin] up top at the moment. The more the merrier, it is a long season and everyone can’t play 50 games in the season. It’s a squad game.”

Johnson’s second-half strike against Dougie Freedman’s side gave QPR their third win in their first four matches, and left Harry Redknapp’s side sitting third in the table ahead of an equally tough trip to Leeds United’s Elland Road next weekend.

Johnson warned that it may take several weeks for QPR to “click”, but insisted that the pain of last season’s relegation is fuelling his team-mates’ desire to return to the Premier League.

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He added: “We have played well in spells but there are loads more to come for QPR. It will click, it may take a bit of time but we will click. You will have games where you don’t play amazingly, but it will even itself out throughout the season.

“All the boys are hungry for it. There is not one player in there who is content to play in the Championship. We have come down, it hurts deep down inside.

“The easy option is to come to the Championship, roll out, think you can just play and that your quality will come through, but the boys have not done that. They know it’s a tough league, they know it’s hard and they’ve rolled their sleeves up.”