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Finally another international break is over and we can get back to the real football. This season has felt very stop start with the league breaking three times already for players to do battle with their respective countries.
The break in early October did us a favour and came at the right time when things were looking pretty ominous on and off the pitch as we went from one turmoil to the next.
The games ahead didn’t offer much hope but performances have vastly improved and we should arguably have had more to show from the matches against Liverpool, Chelsea and Manchester City.
Harry Redknapp has shown the hunger and desire that has rarely been seen since he took over the reins and it’s fed down into the players who are much more proactive and together in their endeavours.
Charlie Austin has really stepped up after a tough start, he’s acclimatised at every step up the football pyramid he’s had to make and is a man in form. An England call-up may not have happened this time but he’s giving Roy Hodgson food for thought.
It’s not been a coincidence that the absence of Rio Ferdinand has helped at the back with Richard Dunne and Steven Caulker looking a more assured pair.
There have been improvements all round with the Chileans Mauricio Isla and Eduardo Vargas really making an impact after settling, while Karl Henry has become an unsung hero.
It’s also a lot quieter off the pitch. Not often you say that supporting QPR.
But if you look at the table we are still second from bottom, now this latest international break is over it’s time to take those recently improved performances into a series of games, which realistically are very winnable.
Newcastle away tomorrow looks a lot tougher now given their recent upturn but their improvement also shows how quickly fortunes can change with a series of consecutive wins.
In the block of fixtures between the international breaks we were level on points and while we’ve doubled our tally to eight points and sit 19th, Newcastle are on 16 points and find themselves in eighth spot.
Four wins from four is a great achievement as consecutive wins are hard to come by in the Premier League, in our two recent top flight seasons we’ve only managed back-to-back wins once.
But if QPR are to show their recent improvement is something more than just lifting their efforts against the bigger clubs we’ll need to start building momentum.
Home games against Burnley, Leicester and West Brom surround a game at Swansea and none should strike the fear that our recent run might have.
Redknapp has regularly stated we’d see the real QPR once he had his key players fit and getting games and it’s looked that way of late.
If we can’t take our recent upturn in performances into these forthcoming games though we’ll have missed a real opportunity to move up the table and justify that view.