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Monday 15 September 2014

Anzhi chief: QPR went all out for Samba

Published 12/02/2013 | 12:26

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Christopher Samba joined QPR from Anzhi for £12.5million in January

QPR were "out of their minds" to break the bank to land defender Christopher Samba from Anzhi Makhachkala, according to the Russian club's director.

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The Congo centre-half was recruited into the Hoops battle for Barclays Premier League survival after they triggered a release clause to push through a £12.5million transfer, with a contract which is reported to be worth around £100,000-a-week.

QPR manager Harry Redknapp described Samba as a "monster" and will aid their relegation battle, although his side remain seven points adrift of safety. Anzhi director German Tkachenko, however, revealed no-one there could quite believe what QPR were willing to pay to get their man, telling Russian news site www.sports.ru: "At QPR he will earn almost as much as he did at Anzhi."

He added: "In my view QPR have lost their minds. When they agreed to pay his release fee we wept. He [Samba] wept.

"Everybody says that he ran away from the club, but that's not true. He didn't put any pressure on the club until we received an offer from QPR for £12.5million, the amount required by his contract."

Tkachenko revealed former Blackburn defender Samba was keen to return to western Europe for family reasons.

"It was linked to the threat that he would lose contact with his children," Tkachenko added. "That was a big blow. He was a guy who loved all of us. And besides, he is a very good defender. I think he is one of the top five defenders currently playing in Europe."

Samba's contract with QPR has sparked much discussion of how it will burden the club financially if they do not survive, although Redknapp has maintained, "there will be takers for Samba all day". Anzhi would certainly be keen on a return move.

Tkachenko said: "If we are successful and playing in the Champions League, I dream that Samba will become an Anzhi player again."

Press Association

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