In episode two we ticked off some targets that were set for this save:
- Avoid Relegation ✅
- Complete evaluation of playing staff and non-playing staff ✅
- Secure first team contracts ✅
- Find appropriate parent club ✅
- Find a midfielder to build the club around
- Season 1 – Achieve mid-table security
- Season 2 – Challenge for the playoffs
- Season 3 – Promotion campaign
- Season 4 – Premier League football
The Championship 2019/20
We finished 2019 sitting pretty in 5th place in the league. A change of system from 4-2-3-1 to 4-4-2 gave us some much needed stability and saw us rise up the league table and we had a great chance of making the play-offs if we played our cards right.
The January transfer window is as much a curse as it is a relief for Championship clubs, no sooner will you bring in some much needed refreshment to the squad will you be batting away offers for your best players. This January was no different.
Massimo Luongo had been courted by Huddersfield for a few weeks prior to the window opening and he was by far my best asset at the football club. I was resigned to losing him and Huddersfield were back in The Championship with their pockets full of Premier League money, if I could negotiate them to the best deal possible I would reluctantly let him go. It took until deadline day for the deal to be done, but £10m for a player that cost the club £500k can’t be sniffed at. It does leave us a little short and would mean that we will rely heavily on Sean Longstaff in that box-to-box midfield position.
Also leaving the club were Joel Lynch to Millwall for £400k & Josh Scowen to D.C. United for £275k.
We made one signing and it was a big one for the club, highly rated Welsh winger, Jarrod Bowen, joined from Hull City for £6.5m. At 23, Jarrod looks promising and hopefully he’ll realise his potential in our push for the play-offs.
On current form our expected points total has risen which indicates a play-off push is on the cards and with 16 games to play this season was in our hands, relegation was not on the cards, mid-table football was all we expected so why not give it a go?
Our excellent form continued in to 2020, the defeat to Derby County in December was our last until March 28th when our 12 match unbeaten run came to an end against Blackburn Rovers with a 2-0 defeat at Ewood Park.
We bounced back with a win against Preston setting ourselves up for a Play-Off run in with Derby, Villa & Cardiff.
Our run-in sees us away from Loftus Road for three of the four games, but it was the home game against Villa that saw us slip up, losing 2-3 with Jonathan Kodjia completing his perfect hat-trick in the 96th minute and after we had been leading the game 2-0.
The final game of the season saw us in pole position with Derby County snapping at our heals, a draw would see us Champions, but who wants to end it like that? We would attack the game like we had done all season but this was Stoke, the game was a drab affair until the 93rd minute when Manchester United loanee, Angel Gomes popped up with this cracker:
Queens Park Rangers, winners of the 2019/20 Championship.
So What Next for QPR?
An unexpected league win really throws a spanner in the works with regards to the four year plan, we’ll sit down with the board to discuss available funds and expectations and no doubt we’ll re-evaluate the four year plan potentially with a view of building a strong Championship team that’ll come back down with the view to go back up in a much better place. At the moment we’ve out first eleven is made up of 5 loan players, take them out and the squad really doesn’t have much going for it, then add the fact that Crouch, Nugent and Rangel are retiring our stocks are really depleting!
Thanks for reading, I’ve really enjoyed this season. I’m looking forward to the summer ahead and building a new squad, the 4-4-2 will be shelved and a Wolves inspired system is what I’ll be working on through pre-season.
See you next time.