Premier League

Rangers hopeful on two targets

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Tue, 29 Jan 2013 17:30:00

Another routine win for the Ivory Coast looks likely when the Group D leaders face already-eliminated Algeria in the African Nations Cup tomorrow.

Victories over Togo and Tunisia mean the Elephants must only avoid a heavy defeat in order to progress from Group D, and such an outcome is difficult to imagine after Algeria lost both of their opening games in the group.

Ivory Coast coach Sabri Lamouchi could choose to restore Didier Drogba to the side after the veteran striker agreed a move to Galatasaray from Chinese side Shanghai Shenhua, a move the coach welcomed.

"We in the national team of Ivory Coast... are happy for him," he said. "It will be good for him to play at a high level."

Drogba was a substitute in the 3-0 win over Tunisia, but with Lamouchi having the luxury of being able to rotate his squad he could come back into the reckoning.

While Lamouchi ponders his options, Algeria are in full post-mortem mode after a 2-0 loss to Togo ended their hopes of progression from the group.

Captain Mehdi Lacen used his Facebook page to issue a public apology for Algeria's performances.

"Just a quick note to apologise to all the Algerian people around the world and even more to those who were present in South Africa," he wrote.

"We really tried everything to put this Togo team in trouble and I think we had opportunities to score the first goal that would have made the difference."

Coach Vahid Halilhodzic has been criticised by his predecessor Rabah Saadane, who claimed he had rushed the transition to the next generation of players by picking too young a squad for the tournament.

The Premier League strugglers have been linked with former striker Peter Crouch and defender Chris Samba.

And with the transfer window closing on Thursday night, time is running out for Rangers to strengthen in their battle against relegation.

Fernandes is optimistic the future is looking brighter at Loftus Road following the appointment of Harry Redknapp as manager in November.

"It's not been a bed of roses but we've still got our spirits up. Harry's brought a new sense of belief," Fernandes said.

"We're working on a couple of players and the team have picked up points since Harry's come in. So we're moderately optimistic. We'll give it our best shot, that's for sure."

"One thing about QPR though - I mean even I get shocked when I see some of the names that are thrown out. There's a name every day."

"We'll wait and see what happens but we'll try and get a couple of players in."

"And where we've always felt we've been a little bit short we can proceed. And if not, I think Harry feels he has got enough to keep going."

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