Returning Ramage targets new QPR deal

PETER Ramage is determined to earn a new contract at QPR after making his comeback from a seven-month injury nightmare this week.

The Rangers defender, who suffered a torn cruciate ligament in September, finally returned to action with a half-hour run-out in Tuesday’s training ground friendly, a 1-0 defeat against MK Dons.

Now the former Newcastle player is desperate for further opportunities to prove his worth before the end of the season, when his Loftus Road contract is due to expire.

“I haven’t yet sat down with anyone at the club to discuss the situation, but I’d love to stay,” Ramage told the Times. “It’s been a rocky three years but I’ve loved every minute of it and my family’s really settled down here.

“Getting the injury in the last year of my contract was sod’s law, but now at least I can throw my hat in the ring and let the manager know I’m available, then obviously it’s up to him whether I’m involved or not.

“Of course there are more important considerations for the club – it’s all about the lads getting the points they need to be promoted. I’ll be shouting it from the rooftops, though – it’s important for me to be fit for selection.

“I’ve been trying to stay involved, going to the first-team games and doing as much as I can off the pitch as well. Now all I can do is try to impress and do everything I can to make sure I’m still at QPR next season.”

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The 27-year-old Geordie left his hometown club to sign for the Rs on a free transfer in 2008, but his fortunes fluctuated under a succession of managers.

Some excellent displays in central defence at the end of last season seemed to have caught Warnock’s eye, but a red card against his former club meant Ramage was suspended for the start of the current campaign and the game against Middlesbrough, in which he sustained the cruciate ligament injury, was only his second substitute appearance.

Initial reports suggested that the injury would rule him out for the entire season, but the player refused to accept that diagnosis.

“I’ve been feeling strong for the last few weeks and it was great to get out there and play,” added Ramage. “Hopefully I’ve got the monkey off my back now and, touch wood, that’s the end of the problem.

“I was always determined to at least get back to training before the end of the season and, if a game came along, I wanted to make sure I could be involved.

“I think we’re going to try and get another training ground game arranged soon but, if we can’t and it means I’m doing extra training instead, then so be it!”