QPR and Harry Redknapp are due to begin talks about the vacant manager’s position at Loftus Road.
A spokesman for Paul Stretford’s Triple S Sports and Entertainment company said yesterday: “Contact has been made between QPR and us as Harry Redknapp’s representatives.”
Mark Hughes was sacked by the London club, who have not won a Premier League game all season. Redknapp’s name has long been linked with the managerial position at Loftus Road as Hughes continued to fail to get the best out of his big-name players at the club. But it is understood no contact was made until after Hughes was sacked earlier yesterday.
Since being sacked as Tottenham manager in June, Redknapp acted in an advisory role to Bournemouth and was also recently linked with the vacant post as manager of the Ukraine national team. It is understood representatives of Redknapp had held talks with the Football Federation of Ukraine but it now appears QPR will tempt him to Loftus Road.
After facing Manchester United at Old Trafford today, QPR’s next three fixtures come against bottom-six sides. A trip to Sunderland on Tuesday is followed by a home game against Aston Villa and a clash with Wigan at the DW Stadium. If Redknapp takes charge, he will face back-to-back matches with two of his former sides in January with a home game against Spurs preceding a trip to West Ham.
Meanwhile, Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson has wasted no time in reigniting his long-running feud with Rafael Benitez by branding the new Chelsea boss “lucky” for having the chance to become a two-time world champion.
The Manchester United manager had a fractious relationship with Benitez during the Spaniard’s time at Liverpool. They fell out over Ferguson’s refusal to sell Gabriel Heinze to the Anfield outfit, and even more spectacularly in 2009, when the Scot suggested Liverpool would be affected by nerves during the Premier League title run-in.
“Benitez has been trying to get a job for a long time and he is very lucky because on his CV in two weeks’ time he could have two world club titles to his name – and had nothing to do with the teams,” said Ferguson. “Jose Mourinho won the treble at Inter; Rafa took over and they won the world title without having to do anything.”
Yet Ferguson acknowledges such good fortune could aid United this weekend as Benitez’s first match in charge of the Stamford Bridge outfit is at home to presently unbeaten league leaders Manchester City tomorrow. “I hope he is lucky on Sunday, too,” said Ferguson.