Austin admits he needs to adapt following QPR return

Charlie Austin admits he needs to readjust to being a QPR player and insists he won’t allow himself to seen as bigger than the team.

The 31-year-old’s return to the club on loan from West Brom was greeted with huge delight by fans.

Austin then scored in the win at Luton and would almost certainly have started against Wycombe on Saturday had the match not been postponed following a Covid-19 outbreak within the Chairboys squad.

The silver lining to the news will be that it allows him more time on the training pitch to get to know his new team-mates ahead of Wednesday’s match at Cardiff as Rangers look to pull themselves up the table.

Despite his pedigree and outstanding goalscoring record for Rangers, which now stands at 49 goals in 90 games, he believes he still has to prove himself again five years after leaving the club.

“I have to adapt. There is no use thinking you are a Premier League striker when you aren’t,” Austin said.

“I could have gone to Luton thinking ‘I am still a Premier League striker’ and put in a poor performance and with all the media stuff that is going on, everyone will have egg on our faces.

“I have to adapt to the situation, adapt to being back in the Championship again. If I think ‘I am a Premier League player’ then I am going to lose and I can’t afford to lose.”

Austin showed some encouraging signs at Kenilworth Road alongside Lyndon Dykes and he hopes he can forge a similar partnership to what he had with Bobby Zamora in his first spell in W12.

“First half against Luton we played quite close and it seemed to work after just one training session,” he said.

“There were times we just turned it around the corner to each other and we were just there. Sometimes it just works like it did with Bobby all those years ago and I feel it is going to work with Lyndon.”

Austin played just under an hour against Luton and hasn’t played a full 90 minutes of first-team football since October.

He admits building up his match fitness is going to be an ongoing process – something the hectic nature of the Championship will allow.

“There is going to be three games in a week coming up over the next few months,” he said.

“That is something I’ve not been exposed to this season. Ne and the manager are speaking and are on the same wavelength and we are going to keep building it up.”