It’s funny what a good old fashioned relegation battle can do for people. Only a month ago Jose Boswingwa was the “Champions League” player that became the hate figure for Queens Park Rangers fans and players alike.
It was widely reported that many of Bosingwa’s teammates found him to be “disrespectful” and “arrogant.” Sitting in the corner, with oversized headphones as his only friend, the Portuguese right back had become the rich kid that no one liked.
His performances had been substandard and made a mockery of the £65,000 a week wages that Tony Fernades was gifting him. Matters came to a full unsavoury head in December, when Bosingwa refused to be a substitute in Rangers game against Fulham. It was an action that caused manager Harry Redknapp to fine the player two weeks wages and instruct him not to train with the first team.
Bosingwa also received fierce public criticism from club veteran Clint Hill who said, “I think the gaffer is right. If you don’t want to go on the bench then do you want to be here?”
“Do you want to fight and scrap with your team-mates?"
“We’ve all been on the bench, dropped, told we can go. We all earn good money.”
“If you can’t sit on the bench then there has to be something wrong. You want people next to you who are fighting for the cause and if you can’t sit on the bench and support the lads then why are you here, what are you doing here?”
“The message is simple: you have to be together and you have to be up for the fight and if you don’t fancy it then January [transfer window] is around the corner. If you don’t fancy it then off you pop.”
Well January has since been and gone. Bosingwa remains a QPR player, largely due to his refusal to leave for less than the £8m outstanding on his current deal. Yet it appears that in a move built on desperation Redknapp is willing to smooch and make up.
The Loftus Roadgaffa admitted, "I've had a chat with Jose and as far as I'm concerned the matter is closed. It's time to draw a line and all pull together."
After two months without playing Bosingwa could now make a return to the squad for Saturday’s trip to Swansea. Loic Remy’s injury is also not as bad as first feared. The French striker was thought to be out for two months but, it has been revealed that he may be back in time for the February 23rd fixture against Manchester United.
With heavy expenditure on “monster” Samba in January, the acquisition of the Spurs reserve team, and everybody kissing and cuddling it seems that QPR are well and truly ready to let the relegation battle commence.
But do QPR fans welcome Jose Bosingwa back for their fight?
image: © wonker