QPR could have a better team in the Championship than they had in the top flight

Following Danny Simpson's arrival could Richard Dunne, Scott Parker and Peter Crouch all join him?

When QPR announced the signing of former Newcastle United defender Danny Simpson I was surprised.

Here was a player once of Manchester United who was a well-liked and talented member of the Magpies squad, choosing not to renew his contract in favour of a switch to the second tier.

For Harry Redknapp, it was a fantastic piece of business. And in truth you would expect nothing less from a man famed as much for his wheeling-and-dealing as his abilities on the side-lines.

But now he has been linked with a move for Aston Villa defender Richard Dunne; a player who, at 33, is no longer the first – or indeed the 11th – name on Paul Lambert’s team-sheet. And yet he is a defender with outstanding ability who could form an extremely effective partnership with Clint Hill.

With a combined age of 67, it would be a centre-back pairing with untold experience – if a few creaking limbs. But in all seriousness, Dunne would be an outstanding signing for the Hoops and could play an integral role in leading them back to the Premier League at the first attempt.

With the defence on its way to being sorted, Redknapp has also been linked with moves for Scott Parker and Peter Crouch. And while it is becoming clear Rangers are targeting a player of a certain age, it is their numerous years in the game as much as their ability that will prove invaluable.

Where before fans would argue they signed mercenaries, now they appear to be targeting a very different kind of player.

As Redknapp said last week, “The players who I bring in now have got to be as important, in terms of characters and people, as they are as footballers.”

At least in the cases of Parker and Crouch, the manager knows them both as players and as men – a fact that shouldn’t be understated.

The irony of having a better team in the year following relegation than the side the club pinned their survival hopes on will not be as bittersweet if they achieve promotion.

Do you like the potential look of the new QPR?  And who else should Redknapp sign before the season begins?

image: © Tom Cuppens

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