QPR transfer focus - Ferdinand encouraged by pre-season
Anton Ferdinand believes the new look Queens Park Rangers side is starting to take shape ahead of the visit of Swansea City in the first game of the new Premier League season on August 18.
QPR’s pre-season trip to Asia has seen them go five games unbeaten, with their last game finishing in a 1-1 draw against Turkish outfit Trabzonspor. Shaun Wright-Phillips scored a late equalizer.
Ferdinand told the club’s website: “The quality the gaffer has added to the squad is showing already. We’ve seen glimpses of what the new lads are capable of. The target this season is to establish ourselves as a Premier League club. If we can achieve more than that, which we know we are more than capable of, then we’ll all be delighted.”
With Rangers narrowly avoiding relegation last season manager Mark Hughes has had a busy summer, adding experienced players such as Robert Green, Andrew Johnson, Ryan Nelsen and marquee signing Park Ji Sung to the squad. Along with former loanee Samba Diakite signing on a permanent deal, Hughes has also brought in dynamic Blackburn winger Junior Hoilett, who has the pace and trickery to beat many full backs. Finally, Manchester United full back Fabio has joined on a season long loan.
Despite seven players joining the Loftus Road ranks this summer Hughes is still on the prowl for more, with reports linking him to established players such as Dimitar Berbatov and Andrei Arshavin it shows QPR mean business this season.
Like Ferdinand has said, QPR are more than capable of a high finish this season, with a push for a Europa League spot not out of the question. With players such as the influential Adel Taarabt, the in-form Wright-Phillips and exciting Hoilett running at defences it will be difficult to rule them out. Add the goals of the experienced Djibril Cisse, Premier League predator Johnson and the one-time England hopeful Bobby Zamora and Loftus Road is likely to see some thrilling football this season.
The tour of Asia has also seen the partnership of Ferdinand and Nedum Onuoha develop at the heart of the Rangers defence, with Trabzonspor limited to only one shot at goal in the first-half.
Ferdinand added: “It was solid partnership. In the first 15 minutes we came under some pressure but they only created one chance from a header and Greeny (Rob Green) was relatively untested.”
So with a solid defence and the ability to create chances up top, pre-season has looked bright for the Hoops and the centre-back puts it down to the preparation of manager Hughes.
“Preparation is key and it’s been meticulous under the gaffer this pre-season. The famous saying ‘fail to prepare, prepare to fail’ has never been more obvious. They live by that and it’s something we will all benefit from. There’s no stone unturned at this club and it’s a great to be part of it”