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Claridge Kicks Off

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Steve Claridge | 16:20 UK time, Tuesday, 8 March 2011

Hello, and welcome to 'Claridge Kicks Off', the video blog where Steve Claridge tackles all the big talking points in the Championship, League One and League Two.

This week, Steve takes a look at some surprise results at the top and bottom of the Championship and examines how striker Nicky Maynard's return from injury has boosted Bristol City.

He also reflects on Brighton and Plymouth's progress at opposite ends of League One, disputes whether Bury striker Ryan Lowe is still on a record-breaking run of goals and picks out two stunning strikes by Northampton midfielder Michael Jacobs.

You can submit your questions for Steve below, or contact him on Twitter. He will answer them on a future 'Claridge Kicks Off' rather than posting a reply.

Non-UK users can see a special international version of Steve's video blog here.

In order to see this content you need to have both Javascript enabled and Flash Installed. Visit BBC Webwise for full instructions. If you're reading via RSS, you'll need to visit the blog to access this content.


  • Comment number 1.

    you looked in pain when praising the Hoops, did it realy hurt that much??
    Also were you told to curb your anti QPR bias as youve gone from 'lucky Rangers, one man team , wont win the league, wont get promoted' to 'deserve to be there, most consistant team'?? Or are you just a realy bad pundit??

  • Comment number 2.

    Oh dear Steve what has happend, you been watching The Football League Show with proper experts who know what they are talking about and realised that the R's cant be as bad as you have been trying to make out ?
    Never mind we lost tonight so you can jump up and down and tell who ever is interested how bad we are again..

  • Comment number 3.

    I watch this every week and read all the comments about what Steve has to say but this is the first time I've commented personally. Can we please, for one week, have no more disgruntled QPR fans reducing this into a slanging match about Claridge. Just be happy with your position, if you keep it up he won't be talking about you next year because you'll be promoted .... in second place of course, behind Norwich.

    Oh yes and to all those QPR fans, you were second best to us home and away.

  • Comment number 4.

    Think Cardiff is one of the few teams you haven't played for Steve. How about managing us? Can't do any worse than current incumbent.

  • Comment number 5.

    QPR really have upset you this week haven't they? First they beat your beloved Foxes, then go and lose to the club you tried but failed to manage! Sorry.....

  • Comment number 6.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 7.

    Can't quite believe comments 1 and 2. I am not pro or anti QPR - they certainly deserve all the credit in the world if they do go up - but I think steve is the best pundit the bbc have, as he speaks with the authority of someone who has played at all levels. Keep up the good work !

  • Comment number 8.

    Can the BBC please translate this into hieroglyphics? Not all of us are fortunate to live in 21st century Britain.

  • Comment number 9.

    Nicky Maynard is the best striker outside the premier league.

  • Comment number 10.

    Steve's comments are sometimes amusing, but normally mis-informed and generally more than biased. However, and I am sure there must be at least one reason, why do you, and the BBC, think you are considered to be a "pundit"?

  • Comment number 11.

    The vast majority of people on here don't like Claridge, but the BBC are going to carry on employing him for some reason.

  • Comment number 12.

    Long live Leroy Roseinor!

  • Comment number 13.

    Response to messages 11 and 12 Glass Frazzle and bakes8

    I am sure Steve Claridge will have a contract so you can expect him to be utilised by the BBC at least until that contract expires.

    I also think Leroy Roseinor is a far better analysist, speaks a lot more football sense with a greater knowledge than Steve Claridge; and without doubt looks far more comfortable when speaking on television.

    Response to Ralphazoid at 3 above:

    Norwich City are a great football club and I always enjoy attending games there - but doing as well as they are (great win v Leicester) they are not a threat to QPR. QPR have just been beaten in a London derby (always tricky) but if they go on another unbeaten run, which I expect them to do, they will win the league at a canter. There is however going to be an almighty struggle for that second automatic spot and the four Play Off spots.

    The Championship promotion race is really, really tough to call.

    Of the top three chasing QPR, Cardiff and Swansea have been there or there abouts all season - and will be will at the end, I feel sure both making the top six. Leeds despite brilliant support are inconsistent and leak far too many goals; Norwich have their moments but have had a few lucky escapes with very late goals and drop points when least expected.

    To add to the difficulty in predicting the top spots whenever a team appears to be in great form they then blow it, maybe due to the pressure. Leicester were on a brilliant run but now have not won in four; Hull were unbeaten in eleven but have just lost two home games and until a few weeks ago Nott'm Forest with games in hand looked a threat to the league leaders. Since when Forest appear to have blown any automatic promotion hopes completeley. Currently Burnley look as good as anyone in the chasing pack and must have real Play Off hopes, but it really is tough to call!

    Taking no risks in my overall assessments QPR will be promoted automatically because they have the points in the bag, the goal difference, the manager and the experience in the squad. Cardiff, Swansea and Norwich should make the top six but after that - who knows?

  • Comment number 14.

    Steve - This getting tiresome and I almost feel sorry for you. It's not your fault. You were a player I had respect for. Worked hard for your team and committed yourself to every game. The rolled down socks gave the impression you had put in the miles for the cause.

    However! As a pundit you are a rabbit cuaght in the headlights. You state the obvious and gloss over the important debates as your arguments are nver really strong enough to stand up. The fact you don't look anyone in the eye and appear to look down a lot tells me you don't even have confidence in your own assessments.

    Your apparent unwillingness to give apporpriate credit where due is laughable. In comparison with the premier it is like saying Man Utd or Arsenal are one man teams as they have Roonney and Fabregas. I am just glad you appear to be being squeezed out for the more analytical Leroy Rosenior. Good luck with whatever elese you choose to do....

  • Comment number 15.

    Do you think we could get a 'Rosenior Kicks off' video blog instead?

    I'm more likely to watch that.

  • Comment number 16.

    In response to a Norwich fan I agree with everything you say. What a climax its going to be to an amazing season, I still expect many twists and turns, QPR shouldn't start celebrating too early, they could suffer a big loss of form like Forest....

  • Comment number 17.

    It's no surprise that the 606 boards are being axed when you see drivel-filled posts like the ones above.

    QPR fans, unaccustomed to the giddy heights of top spot, cannot bear to hear honest criticism of their team.

    I wonder whether they'll still be around this time next year as the limitations of their side and manager are exposed more frequently.

  • Comment number 18.

    Love Claridge

    And QPR fans we (Leeds) stuffed you at home so get off your high horses and rejoice that you are were you are

  • Comment number 19.

    Really looking forward to QPR home and away next year; a West London derby that will be an actual contest!!

  • Comment number 20.

    Like Steve, I thought Bristol City would fare much better than they have this season. But when you have a strong striking threat, it makes all the difference!
    A couple of weeks ago, I said QPR might have had the best of their season already, and last night's result shows that's a viable viewpoint. I don't think that first place is anything like secure now.
    This is the most exiting league I've followed for many many years; and the good thing about it is that it will be who plays the best, not who makes the worst slip- ups, that makes the difference come May. There are four or five really exciting teams in the chase for automatic promotion. Any of them would be a credit to the Premiership. This is what footy's all about!
    It's sad, in a way, to think that such good teams could end up stuck in the mini- league fighting the drop in the Prem. next year.

  • Comment number 21.

    'At 11:01pm on 08 Mar 2011, LanLodger- Beep Beep Beep wrote:

    Nicky Maynard is the best striker outside the premier league.'

    Id say David Villa is probably the best striker outside of the premier league. Although Matty Fryatt comes a close second ;).

  • Comment number 22.

    In response to the most recent comments about QPR - read todays Daily Telegraph.

    If QPR are promoted there will be many changes. QPR are an experienced, but ageing side that Warnock has put together for one purpose - promotion. Many of the players that achieve that promotion are (in my view) likely to be discarded next season as the multi billionaire owners invest heavily in a team to compete for top honours in the Premier League.

    QPR shareholder and joint owner Lakshmir Mittal who according to todays Daily Telegraph is worth £18.4 billion, has just publicly stated his continued commitment to QPR. According to that same report in The Telegraph Mr Mittal has now replaced Manchester City owner Shekh Mansour bin Zayed al-Nayan as the richest man in football.

    So with all due respect to those commenting above, do not expect QPR to be fighting to stay in the Premier League next season. Their ambitions and expectations, with substantial money to invest are much, much higher than that.

    QPR fans, who have not seen their team in the Premier League since 1996 and not seen success of any sort since being runners up in the FA Cup in 1982 and runners up in League Division 1 when pipped by Liverpool in 1976 are about to enjoy the greatest journey they have ever been on.

    As fans of of the west London club I firmly believe all at QPR are about to have their dreams fulfilled!

  • Comment number 23.

    Good luck to QPR IF they are promoted, but you have to be tolerant to criticism - you are not the best team around and will struggle if you go up no matter how many new players you go out and buy.

    It isnt just about buying them, if they are top players you will be paying millions per month in wages and having to generate that money from somewhere.

    Whole new sitation to adapt too.

  • Comment number 24.

    Re 23 froggattisback and those suggesting QPR will not be promoted:

    Clearly to the owner of the richest football club owner in the world worth a purported £18.4 billion generating the money for player transfers and wages is not an issue. This has always been the case in football from Sunderland the team known as the Bank of England Club who won six First Division Titles during the late 19th and early 20th century to Jack Walkers 1990s Blackburn Rovers and most recently Manchester City. Between Sunderland and Blackburn Rovers there are many other examples of clubs financed by owners and winning titles(and not financed by generated club funds).

    To those who still doubt that QPR will get promoted, they have five home games left and five away games. To date in 18 home games QPR has lost one, in 18 away games they've lost three. For Swansea or Norwich to finish above QPR, QPR have to lose three more games from those final ten than both Norwich and Swansea; and four more losses than Cardiff, Leeds and Forest. That is not for promotion, that is not to finish Champions.

    It is not going to happen is it?

  • Comment number 25.

    Where's Amrit when you need him? After his prediction a couple of weeks ago for the wheels to fall off the Brighton bus, we are 3 from 3. Please keep your predictions coming...............

  • Comment number 26.

    PUNDIT? this guy is a chancer, how he even managed to complete the person spec' (prob in video) let alone get shortlisted for an interview is beyond coprehension. Its even more suprising as its an employers market at the moment! Steve, if they lay you off go on ESA not JSA, its 25bar a week more mate, you just need a sick note pal.

  • Comment number 27.

    Any chance of a morse code version?

  • Comment number 28.

    It looks like QPR and Burnley for promotion.

  • Comment number 29.

    @27..... what do you think all the "er" "um" "ah" are?

    We need next weeks done in smoke signals (complete with health warning) or semophore.

  • Comment number 30.

    The charges QPR face is concerning if you support QPR. I am not a legal expert or an expert in the Football Association rules that QPR are accused of breaking. However, my understanding is the charges, which date back to last season and not this season can be summed up as follows:

    Midfielder Faurlin was signed by QPR from Argentine club Instituto de Cordoba in July 2009 in a deal reported to be worth £3.5m. However, it has now been reported that Instituo de Cordoba have not received any monies from the transfer and the deal was instead allegedly agreed with a third party over the player's economic rights and QPR failed to notify the FA of this.

    QPR are also accused of using an agent not registered or approved by FIFA during the transfer.

    Also when extending the player's contract last year, QPR and Club Chairman Mr Paladini are accused of falsifying FA documents to cover up the true nature of the player's original contract.

    The precedents appear to be Luton Town who were deducted 10 points and West Ham who were fined £5.5 million over the Carlos Tevez affair. The Luton case differs from QPR as that was referring to illegal payments made to agents as well as the use of unlicensed agents; so it appears the West Ham scenario is the best guideline for us to understand the possible consequences.

    I have strong belief's that whenever possible football matches and ultimately promotion and relegation should be decided on the field of play. Fans pay thousands of pounds to buy season tickets, away tickets and travel to watch promotion being earned on the field of play. It is only as a last resort that any club should be deducted points affecting their league position.

    Little men in black suits and white shirts sat behind desks in London should not decide whether clubs are promoted or relegated.

    QPR are of course 7 points clear at the top of the Championship and looking at their final ten games it is clear they have every chance of increasing that gap. So it is true a points deduction may not affect their position as league leaders but I hope common sense prevails in any case.

    Of course QPR are denying the charges and will no doubt be very well advised and represented. Even if the FA find against the club there can be an appeal to CAS (Court of Arbitration for Sport), so this may drag on for sometime.

    West Ham United pleaded guilty of course and it was made clear at the time that their penalty was not as severe as it might have been had they contested the charges. However whatever the outcome this is not about bribes or any other serious allegation affecting football results on the field of play this season, but about breaches of rules involving administrative accusations. The matter should therefore be kept in context.

    Decide football results on football pitches; decide promotion and relegation on football results won and lost over a season; to allow that 'dreaded man' in the suit and white shirt to decide such important matters in this great game of ours will be of severe detrement to the game, the clubs and to the fans - that is my very strong belief!

  • Comment number 31.

    not even going to bother watching this video, just going to say you are awful, good footballer - terrible football analyst. Excluded Nolan & Dorrans from his championship team of the year in 2010 because they were 'too good'. On a par with Lawrenson, David Pleat and Mick McCarthy in the World Cup.

  • Comment number 32.

    Every other word is errrrrrr! It's really boring to watch and I do feel sorry for the guy he did give everything as a footballer but as a pundit he is awfull

  • Comment number 33.

    Dorchester player/manager Ashley Vickers would be a great pundit, tackling any subject including mankini's!

  • Comment number 34.

    24 Anthony, you're assuming that QPR don't get docked any points for the alledged charges!

  • Comment number 35.

    30 Anthony, wasn't the contract renewal of said player Oct which would make at least some of the charges an issue of this season. And regardless what is your point here? that because it was last season it should just be ignored because its happened now?

    Oh and you're undoubtedly a QPR fan right?

  • Comment number 36.

    Response to xwarex SCFC

    Thanks for your comments at 34 and 35 above. Yes I am a QPR fan, but nevertheless whoever the club is I believe football matches should be won or lost on the field of play and any points deducted should only ever be as a last resort and for suitable charges. i.e. match fixing, bribes etc. Administrative errors in my view does not come into that category.

    You are right that there are reports that in September/October the FA gave QPR the opportunity to tidy up the affair, but whatever the response from the club was, it clearly didn't satisfy the FA.

    I have been waiting to see what Neil Warnock had to say following the charges and press speculation about possible outcomes if the charges are proven and as a QPR fan I am a little relieved that Warnock has said 'Having met with our legal advisers I am encouraged by what they have had to say'.

    As more details come into the public domain it does appear the matter might not be as serious as first thought and any penalty is likely to be financial.

    I don't believe I am in a minority in believing points should be won or lost on the field of play. I genuinley feel if QPR were promoted because a team above them had a points deduction it would take the gloss off for me knowing my team was not actually good enough to be promoted without the 'dreaded man' in the black suit disadvantaging the team above.

  • Comment number 37.

    To all anti QPR posters above.

    As a Blade i totally understand our current status is purely down to the fact that we are Very very mediocre, at home or away.

    Our change of managers and playing staff is undoubtedly the reason for our second from bottom position and probable relegation.

    On the other hand, QPR are where they are due to exactly the opposite reasons, so Leeds, Norwich etc etc put your envy away and challenge them in the best way trying to beat them.

    If you do beat them, in one or two games it doesnt automatically make you a better side, as that is decided on the last day of the season after the long haul.

    Well done QPR, and good luck for the rest of the season.

  • Comment number 38.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 39.

    I don't know why Steve Claridge gets the criticism he does. Yes, he says some things that some people may not agree with, but he has a very good insight into the sport he comments on. The BBC wouldn't employ him if he didn't know his stuff. He certainly has reams of experience to call upon.

    I could point to the fact that Steve was born in, and for several years, he played for Portsmouth, which has always had a rivalry with their neigbouring club, and my home town, Southampton. He also played for Bournemouth [two goes at it], on the immediate other side. He often appears to grudgingly give us any credit, but he does it all the same. Hats off to him for doing so, and I quite understand when he doesn't. People are human and make errors. Steve's one of the pundits I can think of, and one day even he'll realise that Saints are the best football club in the world. It just takes some people a little more time to realise it. Steve included..! [wink emoticon thingy]

  • Comment number 40.

    Please excuse the typo - that should have read:

    "... Steve's one of the BEST pundits I can think of..."

    And to think I read it through 3 times because there is no edit feature..!
    [throw up hands in frustration emoticon thingy]

  • Comment number 41.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 42.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 43.

    Anyone who doesnt like Steves blog should try listening to it after reading some of Anthony's posts, im sure they'll find it relievingly entertaining.

  • Comment number 44.

    QPR fans, you should be pleased your team are not getting all the praise. Cause it's just nice to go up without any heirs or graces. Look at the Toon last year. Also, all your hard work could be undone with a key decision that needs to be made about your alledged breaking of the rules on 7 counts. The last thing the league and FA bosses want is a repeat of West Ham/Sheff Utd affair. And on that basis, if found guilty you could be facing a points deduction within in the next 2-3 weeks.

  • Comment number 45.

    Response to ToonBarmy

    You miss the point - in law, including breaches in professional sport precedents are followed. If not they are open to appeal, appeals which would usually succeed. If QPR are found guilty of any of the charges and any offence charged is similar to the Tevez affair the FA would break with the precedent if they deducted points.

    Only certain sections of the press and some football supporters who are not QPR fans talk of any likelyhood of a points deduction. The FA do not talk of a points deduction (although it is within their powers to consider a points deduction); and neither do those within the game. Cardiff City (a promotion rival) say they are not at all concerned and prefer to concentrate on their own fixtures, but Brendan Rodgers of Swansea City, with some sort of desperation says he'd like to know if QPR are to be deducted points ASAP, so he knows what Swansea have to do.

    Well Brendan, you have to do a lot more than you are doing!

    I doubt QPR will be deducted points for the reasons stated, but if they are the matter will go on for sometime as I am certain QPR would take the matter to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).

    My advice to Brendan Rodgers is 'Look at the league table son, you're ten points adrift of QPR and less than two months ago they stuffed your team 4-0. QPR are a completely different class to Swansea, so Brendan follow Dave Jones and Cardiff City's example and just concentrate on improving your efforts. That is within your control, QPR and the FA are not!'.

  • Comment number 46.

  • Comment number 47.

    I was just getting to grips with what Mr Claridge had to say (bearing in mind his pedigree)....When suddenly Anthony, our proud and opinionated QPR supporter, took centre stage.
    I was well prepared to express my opinion on the state of the championship hopefuls, but was beaten to it by his logical breakdown of how things will end. His 'Hoops' are 'climbing the hill' steadily, and still looking over their shoulder at the following pack, who seem to be floundering their way to take second place. Who knows who will get their in the end? But, I don't see anyone good enough to last in the premiership for more than a season.(Shoot me now, if you like, lol)
    As a Welshman, I cringe regularly as Cardiff and Swansea drop unexpected points, but they're both still in the hunt. What happened to Forest's good run? Norwich were threatening for a while, and still are. Leeds? They should already be up there, but they've got to earn it, now. And a late surge from anyone else?(Blackpool, last year).
    Bring it on!!! This is what the championship is all about.
    As to the footy politics..........who cares?
    All that matters is week in week out we enjoy the game.
    Anthony, my friend, I totally agree with your comments, QPR have earned those points and deserve to keep them. I hope they will.
    To the chasing pack? Keep fighting for every point, and good luck.

  • Comment number 48.

    Re: QPR

    I have listened to Brendan Rodgers (see 45 above) and have just finished listening to Steve Claridge on the Football League Show. Both Mr Rodgers and Mr Claridge's opinions are frankly disgraceful.

    Both say it is imperative the FA make a quick decision in relation to the charges QPR face. I say, rubbish!

    What is most important is the FA take into consideration all the evidence and in doing so allow all parties sufficient time to state their cases, review the evidence in full and then make an informed decision; no matter how long the process takes.

    The FA should ensure they do all they can to make the correct decision and not necessarily make a quick decision to satisfy Mr Rodgers shortcomiongs at Swansea or Mr Claridge's bias.

    I ask the FA to make sure their decision is right and justifiable, even if taking on board all the evidence takes some time.

    I am fed up of reading all the anti QPR messages on this web site. Ten points clear with a goal difference of plus 20 over and above any other team in the league speaks for itself.

    If promotion and relegation is decided by members of the FA sat behind desks and not by teams competing on the pitch, the game in this country, the FA and Football League will suffer, lack supporters confidence and eventually become a laughing stock (like FIFA).

    Think about it.

    Each Championship team plays 46 games, at 90 minutes per game. That is 69 hours of football for each and every of the 24 clubs.

    69 hours of football played by each team to decide who is the best, who is mediocre and who is the worst in the league. Then, once that is sorted out, after all the effort, talent, skill, pressure, mistakes, tears, laughter, support, hopes, highs , lows; and the phenominal amount of time and money invested by players, club officials and fans etc., some administrator employed by the FA or Football League decides who will actually be promotted or relegated! - well what a joke!

    What a joke these people will make of our game.

    Football should be won or lost on the field of play. Promotion and relegation should be decided by the number of wins, draws and losses a team accumalates over a season. Administrators should administrate, players should play and managers should manage.

    Any club, manager, player or fan who wants their club to achieve promotion by default should consider themselves as failures.

    End of story!

  • Comment number 49.

    And....................Please, Anthony, don't take it out on Brendan Rodgers. He's entitled to his opinion, even if he's wrong, LOL.
    "Three was offside, and the 4th never crossed the line....we was robbed".
    "Wait 'til next time, Boyo. We'll do you, tidy, like!"

  • Comment number 50.

    Anthony, it's 0217 here in France.What are we doing still up?
    You're right, and we all know it.
    Cheers, Matey

  • Comment number 51.

    However............. Somebody, somewhere, has to make a judgement on what is cheating, and what is not cheating.
    This, unfortunately, has no bearing on the team's performance, the fans' support, the sponsor's input, or your opinion, or mine.
    We will be informed of the outcome, be it good or bad.
    Points may be deducted. Fines may have to be paid. Legal eagles will earn megabucks.
    Say no more!!

  • Comment number 52.

    Who is this Anthony guy? I wonder if it is Steve's PR man, it would be quite apt if it is. Steve's recruitment strategy is to bore this comment section to death by appointing Anthony to type long winded, dreadfully dull comments.

  • Comment number 53.

    Congrats to Nigel Clough. A worse record that Aidy Boothroyd and still in employment. I have no idea how...

  • Comment number 54.

    ALL the top 8 sides would never win at the den its a hard place to get 3 points for visiting sides

  • Comment number 55.

    @22 Anthony, haven't you heard about the new EUFA rules which state a club will not be able to spend more than it's income. It is being fazed in over the next 3 years and clubs not conforming will not be allowed to play in European competitions. Chelsea, Man Utd etc are worried about whether they can bring their clubs into obeying these rules. Only Arsenal of the top English clubs would be able to qualify as things are now. Are you suggesting QPR should waste a PL place by not wanting to get into Europe by having extra investment from Mittal?

  • Comment number 56.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 57.

    question for steve.if brighton go up this season how do you think they willcope with the next league up, and the new stadium, thanks

  • Comment number 58.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 59.

    Response to Extra-Time Spike

    Thanks for the comment; you have made a really good point.

    However, the EUFA Financial Fair Play Rules are not yet set in stone and not as simple as you appear to think. I would add things at QPR are unlikely to stay as they are either.

    Re the EUFA Financial Fair Play Rules - there is a risk assessment taking into account debts and salary levels, however owners will be able to put money into the club to pay for capital projects such as new stadiums, stadium facilities, academies etc. The rules are to be monitored by the FA and Premier League who will have the responsibility to issue the licences to English clubs but it is made clear that the English Premier League intend to ensure that the process does not limit the opportunities of ‘smaller clubs’; otherwise Manchester United, Barcelona and Real Madrid will be playing in their very own Champions League, which will get a bit boring!

    In addition, the rules come into play in 2012 but there is a six year leeway to 2018 for clubs to adapt. As for your comments about Manchester United and Chelsea being worried whether they will comply with the rules Arsenal, Man U, Spurs and Liverpool all believe they are already within the rules proposed by EUFA. Chelsea and Manchester City have some work to do but if you look at their recent spending on players and wages they don’t appear to be too worried.

    As to what I mean by things at QPR are unlikely to stay the same - with some football stadiums now housing five star hotels and the ability to include shopping centres as part of a stadium complex, therefore with income generated by them also becoming a part of the football clubs income, then who knows what Mr Lakshmir Mittal and his colleagues at QPR have in mind for a club ideally situated for the West End and the City; however, one thing is certain, there is little that is beyond Mr Mittal, his colleagues and QPR if they have the ambition and set their mind to it.

  • Comment number 60.

    Of course you are right to say that we expected much MUCH more from Bristol City this season but It just wasn't to be. We have some fine players and now Nicky Maynard is back maybe we can carry on with the run and who knows! Damn!! Norwich has just scored in the last minutes to win. Well, there is always next season!

  • Comment number 61.

    Further response to Extra-Time Spike at 55

    Sorry I should have said, if you read 22 above I did not discuss European competitions at all but merely state 'QPR have the financial backing to secure their position in the Premier League and push on'.

    In that event the EUFA Financial Fair Play Rules are completely irrelevent.

    Moving on - I thought Norwich City played really well last night and deserved their win. I think this is about the first time this season that the top two have put some light between themselves and the Play Off positions. However, looking at the weekends fixtures there are some tricky ties, which makes me think it can all change. Hull v Norwich; Swansea v Nott'm Forest and Millwall v Cardiff are all games that could go either way.

    This season is a terrific advertisment for The Championship and has kept me for one right on the edge of my seat. Having watched all the Championship teams play live at least once (most two or three times) this season, on Saturday I am able to watch my own team QPR play at the Keepmoat Stadium. I'm really looking forward to it as my job usually means I have to watch other teams giving me little chance to watch QPR (apart from by DVD sent to me two days after a game).

  • Comment number 62.

    Attention to detail is one of Steve's numerous weak points. In Saturday's
    programme he urged the Football League to get a move on regarding his assumption that there is a matter to be addressed in respect of (assumed?)
    points deduction from QPR. This issue, of course, will be between the FA/QPR and NOT the Football League.

  • Comment number 63.


    i'm new to the forum and have noticed that the vast majority of comments are focused on QPR, good team, great manager, fact. And it seems like nobody is disputing this, so i was wondering why everyone on here keeps on talking about them without mention of any other teams, for example sheffield uniteds fall from grace, or hull citys sudden push for the play-offs etc. Or is it simply that this forum is filled with exited QPR fans frustrated by mr claridge.

  • Comment number 64.

    New to this forum and being a QPR fan originally signed up to slate Claridge as a pundit but it seems like hes already been abused enough. I think were certs to go up in first this season n would like to win the league at Cardiff. Would like to see Leeds back up as their home support was top, would also like the chance of another couple of derbies wiv millwall coz u mite of had us on the field at the den but our fans sung you out of the ground! 15 years now we been out of the premier league and after years of disappointment and one disaster after anotha we finally look like a propa team ready to go up n giv it a crack! QPR Cardiff n Leeds to go up after Norwich are docked 60 points n get relegated for avin Delia Smith. QPR to win the FA cup next year afta a 4-0 hammering of Chelsea in the semis and a 4-3 win over Millwall in the final after bein 3-0 down wit 8 men! Lookin forward to a trip to doncasta this week! U RRRR's!!

  • Comment number 65.

    I'm not gonna moan at you Steve, because you have finally started paying us compliments.

    Yes I we are in a great position, but don't worry somehow we'll do our best to blow it. For example the Fa crisis with Ali Faurlin.

    Anyways, if we do get promoted, I think we'll be ready to spend big. We're finally ready for the big time now. But like I said, we'll do our best to blow it.

  • Comment number 66.

    Steve, was wondering what your thoughts are on Forest's recent slump? From an outside point of view it looks like they're in total freefall, especially when you look at who they've got coming up.

  • Comment number 67.

    The point of getting it all sorted asap is an obvious one, it spoils the end of the season. Even if QPR are not 10 points clear or whatever by the end of the season the league may not hand over the trophy etc if this still looms in the air. Which is exactly what happened to swansea when we won league 1 and leeds still had their appeal ongoing. It puts a dampner on things. And Rodgers isjust saying get it sorted sooner rather than later, not taking sides just encouraging haste. Oh and swansea are going to batter forest on sat ;)

  • Comment number 68.

    Claridge, of course, is by no means the only Sports Hack to express morbid interest in the QPR/Faurlin accusation. But he and most of the others have, throughout, done so with an air of assumption that the 7 'charges' by the FA are valid and that the only issue is whether or not there will be a points deduction. Will he review or amend his view on tonight's programme? But, more importantly will he air his views on whether ANY Football team should be subjected to such punishments - whether it be over such matters of contract or others involving penalties for going into administration. PLAYERS do not trangress these rules. SUPPORTERS don't either. It's the OWNERS. So, isn't it about time that ONLY the owners are made culpable and suitably punished?. After all,
    the CLUB (or what's left of it) is a mere subsidiary of the vultures that have taken over our sport since the Act of Deregulation allowed them into the game.
    Hitherto, Directors of Football Clubs were not allowed to bring in
    outside finance. They were not permitted to own even a corner flag, let alone the whole stadium -and their only remuneration was in
    the form of a dividend - if successful. The Clubs owned themselves.
    The FA became toothless virtually overnight once the floodgates of the ACT opened and now they flex their muscles by punishing imaginary 'CLUBS' which, in truth, are mere pawns in the toy boxes of today's owners.


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