Date:Tuesday December 30 2008
Flavio Briatore spoke surrounding several issues surrounding QPR including managers, players and running the club.
Speaking to the Evening Standard the Rangers co-owner covered several topics outlined below:
FB on building…
Flavio Briatore has never made a secret his desire for Premier League football in W12, but a word that is always accompanied with ambition is patience.
A word that supporters who incurred a staggering increase on their season tickets don`t relish hearing once again came to the fore in Briatore`s latest interview.
He said: 'I promise we`ll reach the Premier League but with our team, our people, our philosophy,`.
'You must build sound foundations; we don`t want to go up and come straight back down.'
'Nobody really expects QPR to go up this season,' added Briatore, whose side are just outside the play-off zone after draws against Charlton and Watford over the festive period.
'When we took over I always said it was a four-year programme to get into the Premier League. This is the second. Last year we just wanted to survive.'
FB on managers and players…
During his brief tenure at Loftus Road, Briatore has overseen the departures of John Gregory, Luigi De Canio and Iain Dowie, with caretaker boss Mick Harford moving on. The only one that Briatore is adament he didn`t fire was the Italian De Canio.
Following the final game of the season whereby Rangers succumbed to champions West Bromwich Albion, De Canio looked set to prepare for the new season. However his plans were abrubtly cut short with the news he had departed via mutual consent.
Briatore and De Canio have since both come out claiming personal issues revolving around the family of the former Reggina boss.
He said: 'I never fired De Canio. He did a good job because he saved us from relegation. He left because of family problems.'
He was more than happy however to disclose the reasons for Iain Dowie`s departure which has more to it than meets the eye. There had been rumours even before the campaign had got underway that the pair were at loggerheads over varying issues, but one that remained constant was player selection.
The biting point seemed to be the selection of Radek Cerny over Lee Camp, with Dowie evidently preferring the former Derby County man to the Czech summer signing.
'The coach criticised me over Cerny. I said I thought he was the best keeper in the Championship. I tried to make him understand what we wanted but it was very difficult.'
Rather perplexing words from Briatore considering Iain Dowie`s job was to coach and presumably pick the side. It seems what Briatore wanted took precedent over Dowie`s opinion, which if true must pose the question, why appoint a coach if you choose to infringe on his role and not let him do his job properly?
These comments from Briatore are further thrown into question when he completely refutes something he has plainly admitted to above, picking the team.
'Sure, I give my opinion but the final decision is with him [Sousa].'
It`s a pity that Iain Dowie wasn`t shown the same amount of commitment or support in his role, but if it took Briatore a mistake to get it right, then hopefully he is learning the culture of British football.
The reason for Dowie`s departure was ultimately put down to an away performance against Swansea City. The R`s came away with what on the face of it would seem a creditable away point - upon further inspection the Swans played the majority of the game with pint-size full back Alan Tate between the sticks following the injury to stopper Dorus De Vries.
Rangers couldn`t muster one shot on goal, something that enraged the travelling supporters and indeed the R`s co-owner, as Dowie ultimately paid the price for an unadventurous performance.
'We didn`t have a shot at the target and I found that completely unacceptable,'
FB on himself…
Flavio Briatore once again chose to focus on how he`s saved the club and so many jobs, the irony I`m sure is not lost on John Gregory, Iain Dowie and several backroom and office staff who have fallen at the hands of our benevolent dictator.
'If QPR exist it is because of us.
'I`m proud because 200 people would have been without a job. I didn`t come into football to make money. I came into it to have fun.'
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