MANCHESTER CITY 6 QUEENS PARK RANGERS 0
Humiliating defeat leaves club facing a likely £58m fine or drop to Conference
CRESTFALLEN Queens Park Rangers manager Chris Ramsey turned on the players who deserted the club’s relegation battle yesterday after their demotion from the Premier League was confirmed in brutal fashion.
A six-goal rout by Manchester City, fuelled by striker Sergio Aguero’s hat-trick, condemned Rangers with two matches to spare to an immediate return to the Championship – in the best case scenario.
QPR could yet be at risk of being expelled to the Conference if ongoing discussions with the Football League over an estimated £58m fine do not reach an amicable resolution.
Uncertainty also surrounds Ramsey’s future, but the man who took over following Harry Redknapp’s resignation in February insists he hopes to stay in charge, albeit with some different players.
“There are some players that could have been available for us who haven’t been for whatever reason,” he said, backing up captain Joey Barton’s frustration at what he called “bad eggs”. “We had a very young substitutes bench and we had three centre halves, one of whom had a broken hand.”
Brentford manager and former City trader Mark Warburton and Real Madrid No2 Paul Clement have been linked with Ramsey’s position, but former Tottenham coach Ramsey added: “I don’t see any reason why I shouldn’t get the job but football is a very funny game.”
QPR chairman Tony Fernandes reiterated his and his fellow owners’ commitment to the club, despite the prospect of a huge fine from the Football League compounding the club’s financial strife.
“Obviously we’re all very disappointed that our fate has been sealed, but I don’t want to dwell on it. I want to focus on the future,” Fernandes said.
“We are aware of the financial implications of relegation and as a group of shareholders we remain 100 per cent committed in the short, medium and long term.”
City manager Manuel Pellegrini, who also faces speculation over his position, pleaded ignorance over reports suggesting City could succeed in luring Pep Guardiola from Bayern Munich this summer. “I don’t hear and don’t read any reports,” he said.
QPR could not last four minutes before conceding, Aguero parting the defence and lifting over Rob Green, and full-back Aleksandar Kolarov’s free-kick made it two before half-time.
Aguero showed no mercy when QPR’s Yun Suk-Young mis-controlled on the halfway line, racing clear to score his second, and completed his hat-trick with a penalty for a Matt Phillips tackle on David Silva.
England midfielder James Milner turned in the fifth goal from six yards and Silva got his reward for a majestic display three minutes from time when he ran onto Wilfried Bony’s back-heel and rounded Green.