Relegated QPR primed to fight £58m FFP fine

Relegated QPR have insisted they will fight any attempt by the Football League to impose a fine on the club for Financial Fair Play breaches.

Legal proceedings between QPR and the Football League are still going on and an independent arbitration panel will decide on whether QPR are liable.

QPR could face a fine of up to £58 million (€81m) for FFP breaches but are challenging the legality of the rules.

A joint statement from QPR and the Football League said: “Legal proceedings are ongoing as between Queen’s Park Rangers and the Football League.

“QPR challenges the legality of the Football League’s Championship financial fair play rules and any charge against QPR (if any) for breach of FFP Rules shall not be commenced pending the outcome of that challenge.

“The proceedings are confidential in nature and neither party is entitled to comment upon the proceedings until the independent arbitral panel has delivered its decision.”

QPR did submit their 2013/14 accounts to the Football League — they were in the Championship during that season but were promoted to the Premier League — and at the heart of the issue is a £60m (€83.8m) income injection classed as an “exceptional item” in the accounts which was to write off loans.

Without that money being put in by the owners, the club would have reported a loss of £69.7m (€97.4m) making them liable for huge FFP fines.

The Football League position is understood to be that such equity injections by club owners are not permitted and therefore the club should be dealt with as though it had made a £69.7m (€97.4m) loss. It is over this issue that QPR has started legal proceedings.

QPR were relegated following the 6-0 defeat at Manchester City on Sunday and former manager Harry Redknapp believes the failure hinged on failing to build a squad capable of Premier League survival last summer — when he was still in charge.

Redknapp said: “The thing they have got in their favour is they have a fantastic chairman, a good board, and they have got good supporters as well, who are very loyal to the club.

“But you have to be realistic. Nine of the 11 were playing in the Championship last year and, at the end of the day, we fell short. We weren’t good enough.”

QPR’s veteran centre-back Clint Hill, 36, said the players needed to apologise to the fans.

He said: “All the mistakes and errors we have made throughout the season played out in 90 minutes yesterday.

“We just were not good enough and that has been the case throughout the campaign. There are loads of questions that need answering. Ultimately we did not have the quality to stay up.

“It is a difficult one to take and we have to apologise to our fans.”

Hill does not apportion any blame to manager Chris Ramsey, who took over with the team already in the relegation zone after Redknapp left in February.

The 53-year-old has overseen just two wins in 13 games but Hill hopes he stays on.

Asked if Ramsey would be a good appointment, Hill said: “I think so. Obviously he is a good coach who likes his youngsters. It is about getting fresh players in and getting the right culture into the dressing room.

“He has come into a difficult situation – with the position we were in and so many of the players not being his. I feel sorry for him.”


The incredible life of Ireland’s first celebrity chef has been turned into a play, writes Colette SheridanHow Maura Laverty cooked up a storm

Their paths first crossed on the top floor of the library at University College Cork in October 2010 when both were students there so Amy Coleman and Steven Robinson were delighted to retrace their footsteps on their big day.Wedding of the Week: College sweethearts open new chapter

Peter Dowdall reveals why all roads will lead to Tullow in County Carlow on February 1Snowdrop patrol: Why all roads will lead to County Carlow

I’ve been seeing my boyfriend for a year and we still only have sex at his place because he insists on freshly laundered, ironed sheets on a perfectly-made bed. We both have to shower first. Why can’t he cope with messy spontaneity and my untidy bedroom?Sex Files: Why can’t he cope with messy spontaneity?

More From The Irish Examiner