Former QPR and West Ham star says Rangers must stay up or lose Austin
PUBLISHED: 11:58 23 April 2015 | UPDATED: 11:58 23 April 2015
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Former Queens Park Rangers defender Rufus Brevett believes Chris Ramsey’s side must avoid relegation if they are to stand any chance of keeping Charlie Austin at the club this summer.
Austin has scored 17 league goals in his debut Premier League season and has been tipped for a call-up to Roy Hodgson’s England squad this summer.
The Rs are two points adrift of safety, having played a game more than the three sides above them in the table, and they will view this weekend’s London derby against West Ham as a must-win game.
Brevett, who played for both sides during his 19-year career, believes only survival would be enough to keep Austin at Loftus Road.
“Charlie’s been outstanding this season,” Brevett told the Times. “He’s an old-fashioned striker who scores the chances that are put in front of him, simple as that.
“It’s vital to stay in the Premier League for everyone at the club but it’s particularly important when it comes to keeping your best players, because that’s where they want to play.
“If QPR are to go down then there will be a lot of the top clubs in the country interested in taking him, because strikers of that quality are hard to come by.”
QPR go into Saturday’s game on the back of an agonising home defeat to Chelsea on April 12, when Cesc Fabregas’ late goal denied Ramsey’s side a vital point in their pursuit of safety.
The defeat leaves the Rs joint bottom in the table, with tough trips to Liverpool and Manchester City to come before the season ends.
However, Brevett – who made 153 appearances for the Rs between 1991 and 1998 – believes they still stand a good chance of staying up and has backed Ramsey to be given the manager’s job at Loftus Road beyond this season.
“I definitely still think they can stay up,” said Brevett. “It’s going to be a tough game against a good West Ham side but they’re at home and Loftus Road will be rocking.
“They’ll be refreshed going into the game because they’ve had a week off and hopefully they can get the three points.
“It was never going to be an easy job for Chris and he knew he was taking on a difficult task but he’s steadied the ship, improved their away form and they’re playing good football.
“I think Chris has done all he can to get the job. He’s still learning, he knows his stuff and he’s clearly got the players playing for him.”
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