QPR head coach Mick Beale spoke to the media today (Thursday) ahead of his first competitive game in charge of the R’s.
Rangers’ new Sky Bet Championship campaign gets underway at Blackburn Rovers on Saturday.
Watch our interview with Mick or read the key points from today’s press activity below…
Kicking things off
“Pre-season has flown! The games, the signing of players and everything that has gone into it.
“I’m really looking forward to it. Coming into the job, I wanted us to be prepared and I think we’re in a nice place.
“We’ve done some good recruitment, and we should all be excited about the next 12 months.”
Implementing his own identity
“We’re very much engrossed in trying to implement the playing style and identity that we want.
“We’re trying to integrate the new players into our way of playing. That’s the forefront of our focus and I’m sure that’s the same for Jon Dahl Tomasson (Blackburn head coach) and the other new managers in the division.
“The time you have in pre-season is no real time to fully implement a style and identity – especially if you’re bringing in new players and putting your own stamp on the team. It’s going to take time.
“Good results go a long way to giving people belief and confidence.
“What we’ve seen in pre-season is players really engaged and trying the ideas I want. Things are not perfect right now, but we’re heading towards a situation where I think we’re going to be a very competitive team.”
“I think they’re very good going forward. Their captain, Lewis Travis, was in my Liverpool Under-16s team previously and it’s a proud moment for him leading them heading into a new season. He’s a hugely competitive young man.
“It’s a club I have a lot of respect for. I lived in the North West for six years and a relation of mine, Raymond Harford, was assistant to Kenny Dalglish when they won the Premier League. It’s a club with a rich history.
“This is a really open and intriguing game. Both teams are very good in the final third, so it will perhaps be about who settles earlier and which team’s attacking players are more ruthless on the day.
“I expect both teams to have good seasons.”
“I told the players in a meeting on Tuesday that, out of the 22 outfield players sat in front of me, six of them wouldn’t make the bus. I asked them to think about that and take things up a notch in training.
“That’s why pre-season is such a personal thing. It’s about getting yourself prepared, it’s about having clarity on your role within the squad and team.
“Everybody’s given me everything they have, staff and players, since the first day. That’s all I can ask for.
“Within games, things may go against you but it’s important that you stay together. That’s what we’ve been working on.
“Would I like the perfect performance on Saturday? I would like one, but I think that’s something we’ll be working towards in the coming weeks. I’d like to think we’ll get stronger with every game.”
“The only player in doubt is Tyler Roberts.
“The rest of the squad have had different types of pre-seasons – the likes of Luke Amos, Taylor Richards and Chris Willock have had a reduced pre-season, but they are available for selection.
“I’ll make my decisions on Friday. All of the players trained well today but I need to be careful with a few of them.
“Being able to make five subs is fantastic for managers now because you have two extra. You don’t lose anything by making a sub at half-time and it allows you to be creative.
“If I feel the boys are ready, I’ll certainly have them on the bus – ready to use.”