In preparation for the 2014-15 season, The Republik of Mancunia has spoken to fans of all the clubs in the Premier League about last season, next season, their own clubs and their thoughts on United.
Scott: How did you rate 2013-14 for QPR?
Charles: How lucky were we? Christ. Thank the lord for the playoff system, because finishing fourth was very generous of our performances. Especially in the second half of the season. And, ironically, we were a lot less convincing after Steve McClaren left our backroom staff to become Derby County, of being robbed in the playoff final fame, manager. But I don’t need to tell you guys what a useful member of the backroom staff Steve McClaren is though, do I?
Scott: Ha, yeh, he did alright for us… who was your best performing player?
Charles: Obvious choice would be Charlie Austin. He was our goals. Top scorer with 17 goals and our next highest scorer was Ravel Morrison with 6 and he was only with us from late February. National treasure, Joey Barton showed his quality, for his faults (yes, he has faults) it was clear from his performances that he is a country mile above Championship quality and he managed to go the whole season with only getting sent off once and didn’t do any shit accents. Nedhum Onuoha was also as solid as load-bearing wall. Didn’t mean to pick to pick two ex-City players there.
Scott: I’ll let you off. Which player are you expecting to be most important for you in 2014-15?
Charles: Thank God you didn’t ask me this a few weeks ago, because I was tipping Esteban Granero to come good this season. Then we sold him to Real Sociedad. So I’m going to go with Junior Hoilett. He’s got a lot of stick from the sort of fans that think calling him “Junior Toilet” is terribly witty since he joined, but I think that’s been very unfair and he’s shown flashes of his quality last season. Let’s hope, now he’s in the more prominent shop window of the Premier League, that he wants a move away bad enough to perform all season.
Scott: What do you think of signing Rio?
Charles: Don’t begrudge him signing for us, with him, Les and Anton, the only Ferdinand to never play for QPR is Archduke Franz. There’s no doubt he’s a top quality defender, but with him, Richard Dunne and Clint Hill, I fear our back line will be slower than a child born as a product of an incest.
Scott: What did you make of Morrison during his loan stint?
Charles: He had a severe case of Taarabts Syndrome. Outbursts of explosive, game-changing genius, but also went missing a lot of the time, very selfish and probably slightly too confident in is own ability. Was a good loan signing though as without his goals, we wouldn’t have gone up. Good player, but one of those who, if he was twice as good as he is, he’d be half as good as he thinks he is. Have absolutely no time for him having his first name on the back of his shirt. Almost as bad as Jay Bothroyd, who is currently playing in the Thai league with “Jaybo” printed on the back of his shirt.
Scott: Ha, amazing. Are you happy with the job ‘Arry is doing?
Charles: Ugh. He can’t go because he got us up and I’m sick of us firing managers. I want us to stick with Redknapp. But then again I would have probably stuck with Hughes. And Warnock. And Paul Hart. He’s a good motivator but his tactical limitations are there for all to see. A QPR supporting friend of mine told me he reckons Redknapp will play with three at the back this year, he’s now seeking treatment for crack cocaine addiction.
Scott: Can’t be too hopeful for next season then? How do you think QPR will get on?
Charles: I think we’ll struggle. I think the best we can hope for is a last minute relegation escape, a la 2011/12 (probably more of a fonder memory for me, than it is for you guys. Sorry about that.) Won’t do anything in the cup. We’re not a cup team. Look it up, since the turn of the century we’ve done worse in the cup than the girls from 2 Girls 1 Cup.
Scott: Yes! There weren’t many United fans sad about your relegation the following year after that day. Are you happy with your club’s performance in the transfer window this summer?
Charles: Probably not the best website to question Rio Ferdinand’s ability, is it? Caulker is more like what I was hoping for. Not the most exciting signing ever made. We’re also being linked with Ronaldinho, hope that comes off, not for us but for him. What kid growing up on the beaches of Porto Alegre didn’t one day dream of playing for Queens Park Rangers? Disappointing that Remy looks on his way out as it would be good to have more than one player on the books who knows how to score a goal. Also sad that Granero’s left because it has made me look a right dick.
Scott: If you could have one United player, who would it be?
Charles: Juan Mata, two reasons: a) He’s world class, absolutely exceptional – I’d say, on his day, better than Bale. b) I know how much it pissed off Chelsea fans when he signed for you… imagine what they’d do if he signed for us.
Scott: Can you believe United were as bad as they were last season?
Charles: You think that’s bad? I tell you what, if we finish 7th in the Premier League season, you won’t catch us flying a banner-carrying-plane over Loftus Road. Mainly because we are too close to Heathrow and it will probably violate their air space.
Scott: How do you expect United to perform this season?
Charles: You’ll win it or be very close to winning. As well as being a QPR fan, I’m also an Ajax fan. I lived in the Netherlands in the mid-90s and van Gaal’s Ajax team was what made me fall in love with football. I’d say the Champions League winning Ajax side van Gaal built was better than any Manchester United side Sir Alex Ferguson ever had. And I’m not saying that as a dig, because United have had some unbelievable sides, I just think that 1995 Ajax team was that good, better than your 99 or 08 sides, in my opinion. But what do I know? I thought Granero was set to be a QPR legend. Obviously van Gaal builds projects, I hope if there aren’t fireworks initially that Untied fans will be patient with him and realise that the structures of success at Bayern and Barca are down to him and faith and patience in him will be rewarded.
Scott: I bloody hope so. After the disaster of Moyes, I imagine fans will just be grateful to have someone who knows what they’re doing. Finally, who do you think will win the league?
Charles: You will. And I think you’ll play great football doing it. If not you then City or Chel… no, I can’t do it. You or City.