MARK Warburton bolstered his ranks on Friday afternoon by making his first two signings as QPR manager.
Experienced full-back Lee Wallace arrived on a free transfer, following the expiry of his contract at Glasgow Rangers, while highly-rated goalkeeper Liam Kelly joined from Livingston.
Warburton worked with them both during his time as Rangers boss and he is delighted to have secured their services.
“They are two players that I know very well,” he told qpr.co.uk. “Lee Wallace – Rangers captain – did a fantastic job for me when I was up there.
“Liam Kelly was a training goalkeeper in the very early stages of his career, in truth, and he needed to go out and play and develop. All credit to him, he went out, did extremely well and really developed his reputation. I’m delighted to get them both on board and they will both add quality to us.”
Wallace was appointed as Glasgow Rangers captain by Warburton and the manager cites the defender’s leadership as one of his key attributes.
He said: “You can talk about the young, hungry players, the desire they bring and the passion they bring but they need to be mentored by two or three outstanding professionals and Lee is one of those.
“Lee has come down and I know him so well. I have watched him on and off the pitch and the standards that he demands from himself and his fellow professionals is very high. For me to get Lee to the club is a real coup for us.
“A lot of clubs were after Lee and I’m delighted to see him here. He has a point to prove – the last 18 months at Glasgow Rangers have been difficult for him – and I have no doubt that he’ll come down here to absolutely prove some people wrong.”
Kelly, meanwhile, is a goalkeeper who boasts an ever-growing reputation for being excellent with his feet. Warburton is excited to see him battle with Joe Lumley for the club’s number one jersey.
He said: “People want the shirt and are desperate for the shirt – that is the nature of the beast. You have 24, 25 competitive animals, who are all keen to do well and you have to have that respectful competition for places.
“Everyone wants in, they all work together day-in, day-out, so there is that level of respect and friendship but you want competition for places.
“Liam will come down and will want that shirt and Joe’s job is to keep that shirt. To have those options as a manager is hugely beneficial.”