Mark Hughes’ sacking as QPR manager has opened the door for a Premier League return for Harry Redknapp, who is sure to be top of Tony Fernandes’ shortlist of targets.
The former Spurs supremo can be backed as short as 1/33 to become the third manager of Fernandes’ 15-month tenure at Loftus Road and it’s easy to see why.
The R’s nightmarish start to Premier League proceedings has left them rooted to the foot of the table and last weekend’s defeat to Southampton proved to be the straw that broke the camel’s back as far as Hughes was concerned.
The Welshman’s bold proclamations that QPR would never be in a relegation scrap while he remained in charge have blown up in his face and now escape-artist Redknapp looks set to be tasked with cleaning up his mess.
He dragged Tottenham from the basement to the Champions League in fewer than two seasons and performed many unlikely rescue jobs during his West Ham and Portsmouth days.
It would appear that Fernandes has swung the axe out of fear that he should miss out on his preferred candidate who earlier in the week declared his interest in the Ukraine job.
‘Arry’s move to the eastern-bloc never seemed viable; it’s a hell of a commute from Bournemouth. He once knocked the Newcastle job on the head because it was too far from his house which suggests this Ukraine rhubarb was nothing but a rouse to force QPR’s hand.
His price to get the Loftus Road job is so unbelievably short it’d take some stake to get a worthwhile return out of it. Someone more left-field could be the recently unemployed Roberto Di Matteo who is a 20/1 shot.
This could explain the odd decision to keep Hughes in a job up until the day before a Premier League game when they’ve had all week to tell him to clear his desk.
Di Matteo’s been available since Wednesday – plenty of time to be sounded out over his interest in the position and, with a Champions League and FA Cup on his CV, he’s definitely got the credentials to manage another top-flight side.
Whether he’s got the ability to retain their Premier League status is another matter entirely, which is why the experienced Redknapp remains the obvious choice.
All odds and markets accurate as of publication’s time and date