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The more the merrier?

PUBLISHED: 17:48 02 September 2009 | UPDATED: 14:40 24 August 2010

CREWE, ENGLAND - JULY 16:  Ben Watson of Wigan Athletic in action during the Pre Season Friendly match between Crewe Alexander and Wigan Athletic at Gresty Road on July 16, 2009 in Crewe, England.  (Photo by Matthew Lewis/Getty Images)

CREWE, ENGLAND - JULY 16: Ben Watson of Wigan Athletic in action during the Pre Season Friendly match between Crewe Alexander and Wigan Athletic at Gresty Road on July 16, 2009 in Crewe, England. (Photo by Matthew Lewis/Getty Images)

2009 Getty Images

By Ben Kosky BEN Watson will sign a permanent deal with QPR in the new year after joining the club on loan from Wigan this week. Rangers have already agreed a fee in the region of £2m for the midfielder whose signature they first pursued more than a year

By Ben Kosky

BEN Watson will sign a permanent deal with QPR in the new year after joining the club on loan from Wigan this week.

Rangers have already agreed a fee in the region of £2m for the midfielder whose signature they first pursued more than a year ago, when he was still at Crystal Palace.

But the signing of Watson leaves the midfield department at Loftus Road somewhat crowded - including the injured Lee Cook, Jim Magilton now has 12 central or wide players at his disposal.

It seems unlikely that Magilton could successfully pair the 24-year-old with skipper Martin Rowlands, who fills an energetic, box-to-box role almost identical to that of the new arrival.

Mikele Leigertwood can also play in that position - and since he arrived at the club almost exactly two years ago, the Rs have now signed a staggering SIXTEEN more midfield players in total.

Watson's signing was the only activity at Loftus Road on transfer deadline day, but it seems inevitable that the rapid turnover of players will continue with some departures when the loan window opens.

Palace chairman Simon Jordan turned down two Rangers bids for Watson last year as he refused to sell one of his prize assets to a club then managed by his bête noire Iain Dowie.

Instead, the midfielder signed for Wigan in January and made 10 appearances for the Latics, but fell out of favour when Roberto Martinez replaced Steve Bruce as manager during the close season.

Watson is set to make his QPR debut a week on Saturday against Peterborough - with Palace the visitors to Loftus Road three days later.

Contrary to reports this week, it is understood that Rangers never made a formal bid for Scunthorpe striker Gary Hooper ahead of the transfer deadline.

QPR sporting director Gianni Paladini was told that Scunthorpe would not sell Hooper at any price when he spoke to chairman Steve Wharton after last weekend's game at Glanford Park.


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