Not taking the Mike
PUBLISHED: 14:16 07 May 2008 | UPDATED: 13:14 24 August 2010
2006 Getty Images
By Ben Kosky QPR boss Luigi De Canio has hinted that he will not attempt to sign Michael Mancienne on a permanent deal this summer. The Chelsea defender has spent the best part of two years on loan at Loftus Road, but Rangers appear to be looking elsewher
By Ben Kosky
QPR boss Luigi De Canio has hinted that he will not attempt to sign Michael Mancienne on a permanent deal this summer.
The Chelsea defender has spent the best part of two years on loan at Loftus Road, but Rangers appear to be looking elsewhere to strengthen their defence ahead of next season.
Asked about the prospects of signing Mancienne, De Canio told the Times: "The whole situation doesn't depend on us, it depends on what Chelsea want to do.
"If we know Michael is a player who can stay with us, that's one matter. If he's someone who has to go back to his original club, we have to adjust our objectives.
"What is true is that we do have more than one alternative and we can see which option is realistic. I have seen a few players who I would like to bring to the club.
"But there are many things to take into consideration - whether the player himself wants to come, whether his team will let him go - so these are just thoughts at the moment."
Mancienne, along with Matthew Connolly and Dexter Blackstock, is a current member of the England under-21 squad, but he is not thought to be rated by Chelsea as a potential first-team player.
De Canio has no plans to move for Manchester United's Kieran Lee either - the youngster, who will return to Old Trafford, started just two games after joining on loan in January.
And the Rs manager has begun clearing the decks already by releasing a number of younger fringe players, as well as American goalkeeper Matt Pickens.
Midfielder Stefan Bailey, who made his debut as a 17-year-old, played 26 times for the first team, but had not been involved since Rangers' Carling Cup defeat by Leyton Orient at the start of the campaign.
Defenders Andrew Howell, whose single first-team appearance was also in the Carling Cup in 2006, and Aaron Goode spent the latter part of the season on loan to Ryman League side Wealdstone.
Pickens, meanwhile, failed to break into the first team during his three months at Loftus Road, and his exit paves the way for the arrival of Tottenham goalkeeper Radek Cerny in June.
The 34-year-old Czech international has been unable to oust Paul Robinson as Spurs' number one and confirmed this week that he will sign a two-year contract with QPR.
Cerny is unlikely to be satisfied with a role as back-up to Lee Camp, but De Canio has made it clear that nobody will be guaranteed a starting place next season.
"Every player wearing the QPR shirt next season will have to understand that there aren't 11 set starters," said the manager.
"Everyone needs to demonstrate their total commitment to the cause, whether they are on the pitch, the bench or in the stands. It is possible for this to work as long as the motivation behind it is clear to everybody.
"When a player doesn't feel that he is important to the coach and the team, he'll never be ready to give 100 per cent when he is used. At the same time, a player who is sure to start every week will never have the motivation to give 100 per cent."
QPR's final position of 14th was an improvement of four places on 2007, but De Canio knows he must fashion a squad capable of featuring much higher up the Championship table next time.
The manager plans to stick to a policy of signing players with experience of domestic competition, adding: "Especially in this league, it's very important to have a team with an English identity.
"If there is a good player from another country who has what we're looking for, then it's something we can look to do.
"But I will be watching the European Championship finals this summer because I'm a football enthusiast, not because I'm hoping to see a player for QPR.