Premier League

Redknapp to stay as QPR boss

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Mon, 29 Apr 2013 18:07:00

Ipswich boss Mick McCarthy insists he is staying put at Portman Road after guiding Town to Championship safety.

McCarthy took the reins in November with Ipswich bottom of the table and boasting just seven points from their first 13 games of the season.

But Saturday's 3-1 victory over Birmingham moved the Suffolk club into the top half of the table for the first time since August and finally secured their second-tier survival amid what has been a fiercely-contested relegation scrap.

And with Championship status now assured, McCarthy has confirmed his future lies with Town.

"I'm staying. The agreement was I'd stay if we stayed up, I'd go if we went down," McCarthy told the Green'Un. "Relegation would have been a disaster for this club and there would have been a whole host of changes.

"If somebody had said to me when I arrived that it would need 60 points to stay up when we had seven I would have said 'do me a favour, we won't get anywhere near it'. It's just been remarkable this league."

Meanwhile, Ipswich defender Tommy Smith has spoken of his pride at being named as the club's Player of the Year.

The New Zealand international told Town's official website: "It's a proud moment for me to receive this award.

"The fans have always backed me from when I was in the youth team and it's nice to get accolades like this but it's been a real team effort this season."

The former Bristol City boss has taken Yeovil to their highest ever finish and they will do battle with Sheffield United over the next seven days for a place at the League One play-off final at Wembley.

Johnson's current deal expires in the summer but Starnes is hopeful he will sign an extension.

"We had talks in the week and the club is amenable to what Gary is looking for," Starnes told BBC Somerset.

"Talks have been going on between Gary and the owners. We've got everything on the table.

"If a one-year rolling contract is something Gary would be interested in then we'd talk seriously about that. If he wants a fixed-term then we'll look at that as well.

"That dialogue is continuing but there are a lot of distractions at the moment."

That first distraction comes at Bramall Lane on Friday night as Yeovil, who won 2-0 on that ground earlier this season, take on Sheffield United in the first leg of their play-off semi final.

QPR were demoted to the npower Championship on Sunday following a 0-0 draw at Reading, which also saw the Royals drop down to the second tier of English football.

Rangers owner Tony Fernandes announced on Monday morning that he would meet Redknapp to discuss various aspects of the team's future, prompting speculation that Redknapp could leave, but the Malaysian confirmed the 66-year-old former Tottenham boss will stay on as manager.

Fernandes told QPR's website: "I have had a positive meeting with Harry.

"I don't think there was any point where he was thinking of not being with us and continuing this project he has embarked upon with a third of the season through.

Redknapp replaced Mark Hughes as manager last November, but despite yet more investment in the transfer window at the turn of the year, the west London club will be playing in the Championship next season.

Redknapp said: "We're all very sorry with the way this season has ended.

"It's been a disaster really, a really disappointing season for everyone - the owners, the staff, the fans; everyone associated to the club.

"We're going to give it a real good go next season though and hopefully get this club back to where it belongs."

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