Queen’s Park Rangers have appointed the former Ipswich Manager Jim Magilton on a two-year contract to replace Paulo Sousa, with the Chairman Flavio Briatore describing him as “the stand-out candidate for the job”. The 40-year-old, who spent three seasons at Portman Road before being sacked in April for failing to secure a play-off place, has signed a two-year deal at Loftus Road, and becomes the fifth permanent Manager since the new owners arrived in October 2007. John Gregory, Luigi De Canio, Iain Dowie and Paulo Sousa have all come and gone, as have Caretakers Mick Harford and Gareth Ainsworth, who has been at the helm twice.
Briatore said: “We had an incredibly high number of applicants, but Jim was the stand-out candidate for the role. We sat down with him on four separate occasions over the last month to discuss our goals and ambitions and he has really impressed myself, Mr (Bernie) Ecclestone, Mr (Lakshmi) Mittal and Mr (Amit) Bhatia with his knowledge, understanding and passion for football. He did a very good job at Ipswich, playing some fine, attacking football, and he has great ambition to achieve in this next chapter of his managerial career. We are all really looking forward to working with him.”
Speaking to the club’s website, Magilton said: “I’m really looking forward to the challenge of managing this great football club. The Board are highly ambitious, but they are very realistic at the same time. I have huge ambitions to achieve as a Manager, though, and our aim is to keep progressing, year after year. There is a very strong group of players at the club and with one or two additions over the summer, we can expect to be in a position to improve drastically upon the eleventh-place finish secured last season.”
Former Queen’s Park Rangers striker Bradley Allen has warned new Manager Jim Magilton that he must hit the ground running at Loftus Road. Magilton became the fifth permanent Manager appointed since the arrival of Flavio Briatore as owner in 2007. Allen told BBC London 94.9: “It’s a big job at Queen’s Park Rangers. These new owners want success, instant success. How long he’s going to be given to move Rangers towards those play-offs is going to be interesting.” Allen who played for QPR between 1988 and 1996, added: “It’s a very, very tough league – the Championship. If they can get off to a good start and make Loftus Road a real fortress, which is going to be important, you never know. But there’s some big, strong teams in that league this season and it’s going to be hard for Jim.”
Magilton left his previous role at Ipswich in April and replaces Paulo Sousa as QPR Manager after the former Portugal midfielder spent just five months in charge. Allen, now the Under-14 Coach at Tottenham Hotspur, added: “I just felt (with) the continual change at QPR, that they might have gone for someone with a bit more experience. My old Manager at Charlton, who’s been out of a job since he left West Ham, Alan Curbishley, has got it on his CV to get a club out of the Championship. But just perhaps he would have wanted an element of more control, that’s why somebody like Alan hasn’t gone for that job. Whereas with regards to Jim, someone new to it, he would accept to a degree certain decisions being made and that just seems to be the case at Rangers at the moment.”
BBC London 94.9