QPR to axe keeper because of loan verdict

QPR plan to release youngster Elvijs Putnins as a consequence of the Premier League’s refusal to allow them to take a goalkeeper on loan.

And manager Neil Warnock claims he will opt against giving teenagers professional contracts in the future because it could limit his options if his established players are injured.

Rangers asked for permission to make a temporary signing after learning that Paddy Kenny is likely to be sidelined for several weeks.

With stand-in stopper Brian Murphy also sidelined and Radek Cerny hampered by longstanding fitness issues, the club believed they had a strong case.

But the verdict went against them because Cerny is part of their 25-man squad and they also had the option of recalling Latvian keeper Putnins, 20, from a loan spell at non-League Boreham Wood.

Players under the age of 21 do not need to be included in the squad lists submitted by top-flight clubs, so Putnins was eligible to play and was a substitute against Norwich at the weekend.

Putnins was told during the summer that he was being released, but was desperate to stay so QPR agreed he could remain on their books until his contract expires at the end of this season.

Kenny’s condition is still being assessed.

Warnock says that agreement meant he was subsequently unable to make a loan signing ahead of Saturday’s game, so Putnins will soon be shown the door and other youngsters can expect no favours from the R’s boss in future.

A furious Warnock said: “We couldn’t sign anyone else and they said it was because we’ve got other goalkeepers on the books.

“We gave the lad a free transfer last year but he didn’t want to go anywhere. He wanted to train and stay with us.

“So, to be nice, we said ‘Just train with us if you want, son. You won’t play but we’ll carry on paying you until your contract’s up.’

“We’ll now have to pay the lad up in January. We only kept him out of the goodness of our hearts because he’s a good lad and we don’t mind him training with us.

“They told us that as well as him, we have another kid on professional forms. Well I won’t sign a youngster on professional forms again – and I’m sure that’s not what the Premier League envisaged. Can’t we have commonsense?”

Kenny has had an injection in a bid to speed up his return, but he is expected to be out of action for at least a month.

The club are yet to establish the exact nature of his injury, which is causing pain in his side and upper hamstring.

His absence is a major blow for Rangers and leaves them reliant on the 37-year-old Cerny, who has been nursing a back complaint.

Curiously, should Cerny be unable to play, Warnock may then be able to make a loan signing.

Warnock added: “They won’t let us sign anyone unless Radek gets injured. I could tell them he’s injured but I’m not going to lie to them.

“I think they thought I wanted to sign Jens Lehmann or Petr Cech. We only wanted someone to sit on the bench.”

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