Hughes aiming for the top at QPR

New Rangers boss Hughes and chief executive Philip Beard have

revealed becoming champions is the “ultimate” ambition for the club

and owners Tony Fernandes and Amit Bhatia.

Hughes noted similarities between the QPR he took charge of this

week and the Chelsea he joined as a player in 1995, although he

played down direct comparisons.

“Yes, I can see that but I don’t think we are trying to emulate

that,” said Hughes, whose first goal is to steer Rangers away from

the Barclays Premier League relegation zone.

“You’ve got to have ambitions – that’s the key to it, and it’s

going to be a long road with a few bumps along the way.

“But we’re prepared for that.”

Asked if winning the title was the club’s ultimate target, he

added: “If I am still here in the next five or 10 years then we

will be speaking of that stage but we’re not at that stage.”

Beard said: “It has to be the ultimate goal for a football

club.

“I joined QPR because I listened to what Tony Fernandes and Amit

Bhatia are trying to do here and I think I can help in developing

the club off the pitch by building a new training ground and

looking at plans for building a new stadium.

“It’s crazy to speculate how long it will take to get to the

stage where you’re competing necessarily for a Champions League

place or a title.

“If you don’t have those dreams and goals, there’s not much

point in doing that (building a stadium).”

Rangers’ medium-term ambitions are more realistic.

Beard said: “I tried to match us up against quite a few

clubs.

“In terms of clubs that I have looked at that have got to the

Premier League and have stayed there, Stoke is a good model.

“I don’t think we can directly compare ourselves with Chelsea or

Arsenal yet in London, so Fulham is a benchmark in that it’s very

close.”

QPR missed the deadline for signing new players before Sunday’s

trip to Newcastle, having had bids rejected for Steven Pienaar,

Christopher Samba and Andy Johnson.

Today saw Chelsea deny agreeing a fee with them for the sale of

defender Alex.

Rangers sources suggested this morning their west London rivals

had accepted a bid for the wantaway Brazilian but the Blues later

insisted that was not the case.

Manager Andre Villas-Boas said: “I’m sure that the clubs can

reach an agreement if they continue to push.

“We know Alex’s market value and we’re just not going to let him

go quite easily, not that QPR’s offer is far, far off.”

Hughes will also be without key men Joey Barton (suspended),

Alejandro Faurlin (out for the season), Adel Taraabt and Armand

Traore (both on African Nations Cup duty) on Sunday but left the

rest of his squad in no doubt what was expected.

“My values and my standards are quite high,” Hughes said.

“I’ve found sometimes when I go in at places, people need to

raise their game a bit more.”

The last two years have seen Hughes spend more time out of the

game than it after his sacking at Manchester City and controversial

decision to quit Fulham.

“When you’re out of football, you frustrate your wife and your

kids because you always want the football on (the television),” he

said.

“It’s very easy to keep watching and pick up information.”

Hughes has improved the fortunes of every team he has taken

charge of, from Wales to Blackburn to City to Fulham.

“I think people see me know as a confident Premier League

manager,” he said.

“I hope after my time here I’ll become a great Premier League

manager.”

QPR will be hoping the same, with their decision to sack Neil

Warnock on Sunday seen as harsh in some quarters.

When it was pointed out League Managers’ Association statistics

show a January change of boss is no guarantee off success, Beard

said: “There is no absolute that you change manager and think

you’ll significantly get better.

“I would back our judgement that bringing Mark Hughes here with

his background can help us significantly.”