QPR star: Now watch us become a Premier League force

Mackie believes Rangers can build on momentum of top-flight survival

Jamie Mackie is desperate to help QPR become a Premier League force next season.

Rangers narrowly avoided relegation to the Championship on Sunday, beating the drop by a single point despite a 3-2 defeat at new champions Manchester City.

Chairman Tony Fernandes is likely to invest in the squad again this summer, and Mackie believes the building blocks are now in place for QPR to enjoy an extended Premier League stay.

The Scotland international, who signed a new one-year deal this week, is adamant he has a big part to play, and believes many of the team who won the Championship last season but were written off thereafter have earned another shot at Premier League football.

“I honestly think that we will be a force next season, we will really kick on and be a club to watch,” said Mackie. “Momentum gathers. I think we could be a really big team.

“People looked at our run-in and said that there was no way that we could stay up, but as a group of players we’ve bought into the manager’s way, we’ve listened.

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“The lads like [Clint] Hill, [Shaun] Derry and Paddy [Kenny], who were here last year, have been arguably the best players. We’ve spent money on big players and people say ‘you might not play’, but for us all we’ve done is add quality to our squad. We love playing for our football club.

“The nature of the chairman is that he’s going to invest even more in the club, so I can play with even better players and in turn become a better player myself.

“But the main thing is the club does well and I’m delighted to be part of it. I think you play better with better players. You feed off them, you learn from them in training. I hope we bring more quality in so we don’t have to leave it until the last day of next season.”

Mackie admitted he has never been involved in a game like Sunday, when QPR came astonishingly close to winning 2-1 at the Etihad and denying Roberto Mancini’s side the title.

Mackie’s second-half diving header had City on the rack, and the 26-year-old believes his side did enough to take at least a draw from a game they eventually lost in injury-time.

“I’m a bit gutted that we didn’t spoil the party because I really did feel that we deserved a point,” he added. “However, all that matters is us being in the Premier League.

“I think I cried when I scored! It was the most emotional game I’ve played in, it means so much to me. I love QPR for giving me the chance and I want to stay here and be part of great things.

“Four years ago I was playing in the Conference, and to be able to have a say in the Premier League title is unbelievable for me.”

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