Interesting that Dan Shittu’s been given the chance to stay with QPR during pre-season and earn another contract. I must admit I didn’t expect that to happen.
Shittu and Pascal Chimbonda looked for all the world like short-term signings simply to get extra bodies in during the promotion run-in.
Chimbonda left the club in a huff weeks before Rangers’ announcement that he was among eight players being released now their contracts have expired, but fair play to Shittu for keeping his foot in the door.
One man who didn’t survive the cull was Josh Parker, who until fairly recently was firmly in Neil Warnock’s plans.
A number of clubs have been keeping tabs on Parker for some time – so the player won’t be short of options – but around a year ago, when there was some interest in signing him on loan, Warnock was adamant that he saw him as part of his first-team squad.
He did eventually end up having a loan spell at Northampton, which he cut short after being told he was not being selected for a game against Oxford.
When he was later loaned to Wycombe, he was still in Warnock’s thoughts; so much so the manager insisted on a recall option and would have called him back for January’s FA Cup game against Blackburn had Parker not got injured.
Those unproductive loan spells didn’t help Parker’s cause one bit, but I still think he can get a League One club – or at least a trial with one – if he knuckles down.
The importance of a successful loan has been underlined by the fact that Max Ehmer’s time at Yeovil has seen him secure a one-year extension to his QPR contract.
Much respect is due to Ehmer because he’s made his way despite some initial cynicism about him, given that he joined as a schoolboy when his father Val put money into QPR and was involved with people who were trying to take control of the club.
You can therefore imagine some of the whispers about young Max – not least because another youngster, Jack Perry, who was later released, was also taken on by the club (as an actual pro) around that time, and his father too was financially involved behind the scenes.
The decision to take on “the German’s son”, as I once heard him angrily referred to, was one of many issues that caused a bitter dispute at board level during an infamously acrimonious period. But it has proved to the right decision.
He can play. No doubt about it. I’ve liked the look of him both in midfield and when he’s switched to right-back.
And I’m not alone. During last year’s pre-season games scouts from various clubs were asking me about him and were more than impressed.
So good luck to the guy in the future. A good player worth keeping an eye out for.