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Saturday 20 January 2018

Les Ferdinand lands director's role as QPR announce coaching reshuffle

Tony Fernandes has revealed his criteria for the next manager of QPR
Tony Fernandes has revealed his criteria for the next manager of QPR

QPR have announced a restructuring of their coaching set-up following the departure of Harry Redknapp as manager, with Les Ferdinand named director of football.

Ferdinand, who returned to Loftus Road last October as head of football operations, was on Monday placed in caretaker charge of the first team, alongside Chris Ramsey and Kevin Bond, when Redknapp resigned.

Now Ferdinand's role has been redefined, with responsibility for the whole football department, chairman Tony Fernandes announced on Tuesday.

Former Tottenham head coach Tim Sherwood, who worked alongside Ferdinand and Ramsey at White Hart Lane, is the hot favourite to succeed Redknapp.

Ferdinand has "already made significant improvements to the footballing philosophy of the club since his return - and the board are now keen for him to have more of a hands-on role at all levels, particularly in the field of recruitment, working closely with the first team," QPR said in a statement.

Fernandes told www.qpr.co.uk: "I've been really impressed with the job Les has done in his short time here and as such I am keen for his role to evolve, with the clear mandate of assisting us in developing and evolving the footballing department, from the academy to the first team.

"This is a new strategy for us. Our recruitment policy at QPR is changing.

"We want to develop a philosophy of buying young, hungry players, who can go on to forge decent careers with us.

"Premier League survival is our priority in the short term, but in the medium and long term we want to make sure everything is in place, from the academy upwards, to create a culture and philosophy within the club that QPR fans can be proud of.

"Les bleeds blue and white and working closely with the first team and academy management, particularly in recruitment, he is going to play a key role in moving us forward over the coming months and years."

Former England, QPR, Tottenham and Newcastle striker Ferdinand is relishing his latest challenge.

"Everyone knows what this club means to me and if anything the last few months have only enhanced the feelings I have for QPR," the 48-year-old said.

"Working closely with Tony and the Board, I can assure QPR fans that they are desperate to create a lasting legacy at Loftus Road and the role of Director of Football will be hugely important in terms of where we want to take this club in the future.

"Some of the management courses I've taken over the last few years were with a role like this in mind, so I couldn't be more delighted."

Redknapp's departure was attributed to a need for knee surgery, despite rumours of conflict over transfers.

Fernandes has revealed changes to QPR's strategy were necessary and wants the club to nurture young talent, rather than buy in players.

He added: "I've had many messages from supporters, of all ages, who aren't - for one reason or another - satisfied with what's going on at QPR at the moment, but I can reassure all Rangers fans that we are putting the building blocks in place to move things in the right direction for the future.

"We've made a number of mistakes in the transfer market over the last few years and it's something we want to change.

"We don't want to be a buying club - we want to nurture young talent and build a young, ambitious team."

QPR also officially confirmed the departures of Glenn Hoddle and Joe Jordan.

Press Association

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