Owens suffers injury setback and three youngsters leave QPR

QPR midfielder Charlie Owens faces another six months on the sidelines.

Owens, 22, has been out since August last year with a long-term knee injury.

It was hoped he would be fit for the start of next season.

However, he continued to experience problems and has now had further surgery.

The Northern Ireland Under-21 international has made three first-team appearances for QPR since being signed in January 2019 after being released by Tottenham.

He featured in EFL Cup ties against Bristol City and Portsmouth earlier in the season and manager Mark Warburton had planned to involve him more.

First-team coach Neil Banford told West London Sport in March that he rates Owens highly. 

But Owens is now expected to be unavailable until late this year, possibly into early 2021.

‘Undoubted quality’

QPR’s head of medical services Dr Imtiaz Ahmad told the club website: “It is extremely disappointing for Charlie.

“He had surgery again in January 2020 for a torn cartilage in his right knee.

“Despite everyone’s best efforts and a number of specialist reviews, Charlie has still been suffering from persistent knee pain and swelling that has affected his end-stage rehabilitation.

“As a result of this, another operation on the knee was deemed necessary.

QPR manager Mark Warburton
Warburton planned to involve Owens more this season

“This is not a decision that was taken lightly. A second opinion was sought which sadly confirmed the need for further surgery.

“Realistically, rehab will take approximately six months.

“Charlie is naturally disappointed but he is a very determined and focused individual who will do everything he can in the upcoming months to return stronger than ever.”

Warburton added: “Charlie showed his undoubted quality through a strong pre-season and this is therefore an obvious loss to the squad as well as a big disappointment for the player.

“However, he is receiving outstanding medical care and support, and with his strength of character we are all looking forward to seeing him return to first-team action.”

QPR youngsters released

Meanwhile, QPR have announced they are releasing Giles Phillips, Lewis Walker and Charlie Rowan.

The contracts of all three players are about to end.

American Phillips was signed in 2017 and is currently on loan at Wycombe, while fellow defender Rowan was signed in after being released by Watford. Neither played for QPR’s first team.

Striker Walker – son of former England centre-back Des Walker – was signed along with Rowan in 2018 – in his case after being released by Derby – and made four appearances for the R’s, three of them as a substitute.