Harford wants to add to away-day blues

MICK Harford may be in only temporary control of football affairs at Queens Park Rangers, but he wants to add to Ipswich Town's away-day blues at Loftus Road tomorrow.

By Elvin King

MICK Harford may be in only temporary control of football affairs at Queens Park Rangers, but he wants to add to Ipswich Town's away-day blues at Loftus Road tomorrow.

Town have not won away from Portman Road in their last eight Coca-Cola Championship matches, but they will fancy their chances against a bottom-of-the-table London-based side.

Harford, who was assistant manager at Colchester United last season, said: “Ipswich have struggled on their travels and we'd like to make them struggle a bit more. They have been reasonably sound at home and are a decent footballing side.

“Maybe we've turned the corner since our win over Norwich two weeks ago.”

Harford has been in charge at Rangers since John Gregory's departure earlier this month, but former Palermo coach Francesco Guidolin has been heavily linked with the role and has revealed that he has had talks with Flavio Briatore who is to become the new QPR owner.

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Harford said: “I had a meeting with the chairman and he just said 'carry on and see where it takes us'. I enjoy working here and the players have responded well. I am getting on with preparing the lads for tomorrow's game, which should be a good one.

“We're still in a predicament - we're still bottom of the league and we need to win our home games. However, if we remain nice and positive and play as we did against Norwich, there's a good chance we can start climbing the table.”

Chris Barker, who played for Colchester last season, is out after a groin operation, but central defender Michael Mancienne played 45 minutes of reserve football on Tuesday and came through unscathed.

He is in the squad but Daniello Nardiello (hamstring) and Marc Nygaard (calf) who are now training may find tomorrow's match too early for them.

Rangers have six players on loan including striker Rowan Vine (Birmingham) who was reported to have been interesting Ipswich. The others are Mancienne, Ben Sahar (both Chelsea), Hogan Ephraim (West Ham), Jason Jarrett (Preston) and Martin Cranie (Portsmouth).

Midfielder Gareth Ainsworth sees six-goal Town striker Alan Lee as the Blues danger man. He said: “Alan's a good target man and a hard worker up front. We're going to have to keep him quiet but, if we can do that, we'll have a good chance of winning. The lads have really been knuckling down under Mick Harford.

“Ipswich don't travel all that well and tomorrow's game is definitely winnable.”

Tomorrow's squads

Queens Park Rangers: Camp, Rowlands, Stewart, Cranie, Ainsworth, Bolder, Leigertwood, Sahar, Ephraim, Vine, Jarrett, Timoska, Moore, Cole, Bignot, Marcienne, Nardiello, Nygaard.

Ipswich Town: Alexander, Wright, Wilnis, De Vos, Harding, Walters, Miller Legwinski, Garvan, Clarke, Lee, Bruce, Counago, Haynes, Supple, Roberts, Peters.

Referee: Mr N Swarbrick (Lancashire)

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