Neil Warnock: Good luck to Harry Redknapp in my old seat – I'll be sad if QPR go down

What I Learnt This Week: It baffles me how England let Moses get away. We’re not blessed with strikers

I would like to wish Harry Redknapp the best of luck filling my old seat in the dugout at Queen's Park Rangers. It was one of the achievements of my managerial career getting QPR back into the Premier League after a 15-year absence and I would be very sad to see them go back down after all the hard work the players, staff and myself put in. Neither the fans nor the owners, Tony Fernandes and Amit Bhatia, deserve that.

Harry did a great job keeping Portsmouth up against all odds a few years ago and I'd back him to do the same with QPR. You can't fault the backing Tony and Amit gave Mark Hughes in the transfer market and I'm sure they will do their best to enable Harry to wheel and deal in January and enable the club to move on at last.

I have to admit there have been times this year when I have had to bite my tongue. I kept hearing the team were playing well without getting the results they deserved: so were mine but we did win away from home three times. There was also the comment at the end of last season when my successor said after coming 17th, the same position I left them in, "we won't be in this position again". Unfortunately he was proved right; QPR have not been that high since.

It was difficult to accept when I was replaced. Having met the mandate of keeping out of the bottom three we were about to make the signings in the January window we needed to head towards mid-table. Having kept QPR up I planned to retire and hand the reins over to someone else for a smooth transition. It is easy to look back in hindsight but I think Tony might now reflect and feel that would have been a better way to proceed.

2. Takeover relief at last

As anyone who read last week's column will appreciate, I am delighted the takeover has finally been agreed at Leeds United. It's been a long time developing but the new people are in it for the long term and, hopefully, it'll have been worth waiting for.

In the short term it has created a bit of a buzz in the city and enabled me to bring in a couple of players on loan, Alan Tate of Swansea and Jerome Thomas of West Bromwich, which we needed as we have been decimated by injuries and suspensions. I am also lining up targets for January, but first there are a couple of very tough games to play, with us facing two of the Championship's top five, Crystal Palace and Leicester City, in just four days.

Today's match reunites me with Wilfried Zaha, who has progressed very fast since I invited him to train with the first team at Palace three years ago. He is a fabulously talented young lad and I am sure he will go to the very top.

I just hope he commits himself to England. As I said earlier this month, I was saddened to see Victor Moses go to Nigeria when I am sure with a little persuasion he would have played for England. It beats me how we let Victor get away. It's not as if we're blessed with top-class forwards here.

Working at Palace was one of the happiest episodes of my football career, even though the ending was one of the most upsetting and traumatic.

I'm towards the end of a book about management (available next summer at a bookshop near you) and have really enjoyed recalling my time there. Personally, I would love to see them get promotion for the fans because I know what they have had to put up with. Make no mistake, there were bleak times for them in that period of administration, but it shows you can come out of these situations stronger.

I wasn't able to go to Turin for a few days this week on the pretext of scouting Chelsea in advance of our cup tie against them. Maybe the new owners will let me go to Japan for the Club World Cup. Then again, with a team like Chelsea maybe I'm better off not watching them at all. It will only make us more nervous. When you play a top team you just hope you don't get hammered; results like the one against Everton are a bonus.

3. In hot water again

It's been a while, but I got one of those letters this week from the FA charging me with misconduct after Sunday's game at Millwall. It is in relation to an exchange with referee Mark Halsey. To say I was surprised is an understatement; it was one of the least offensive such exchanges I've had with a ref in my career. I will be replying to the charge in the next few days so there's not much I can say at the present but I'll keep you informed.

4. I'm glad for ref Mark

I am very pleased that Mark Clattenburg was cleared this week. I supported him from the beginning. I simply didn't believe it. I couldn't imagine him saying what he was supposed to have said and I'm pleased there will be no action. No doubt my support won't stop him booking me if he has to, but I am thinking of asking the FA if we can have him refereeing us against Chelsea in the next round of the Capital One Cup.

Before I get anyone complaining, I am only joking. Besides, he would probably give all the 50-50s against us so as not to appear biased, so we could probably be better off with someone else.

5. And in cold water too

I was brought down to earth on Wednesday night when I got home to find the heating had packed in. It was too late to get anyone in, so with the help of a neighbour I investigated. We worked out the problem was probably in the loft and after much ado we managed to open the hatch. It then fell out, covering us with dust and spiderwebs. It obviously hadn't been opened for a while.

After all that we couldn't get it going, so Thursday morning I had to go downstairs and boil up a kettle to have a shave. I then went for a shower thinking it was electric so there would be no problem. Wrong. The water was freezing. So I had to boil up another kettle and wash my hair in the sink. It took me back to being at my grandma's as a boy when I had a tin bath in the middle of the room and a pot sink to wash my hair in. I thought to myself: "There can't be many managers at this level running up and down the stairs with a kettle of water so they can wash."

6. Happy Valli

On Thursday the coaching, management, support and academy staff had our Christmas party at a local Italian restaurant, all 40 of us. They had a Frankie Valli night so it was the obvious choice for me. His songs are at the centre of Jersey Boys, which, if you haven't seen it yet, is a must.

7. Top marks, William

William got such a fantastic report from school we think he might have Tippex-ed over someone else's name. My first thought was "this can't be my son", then I remembered Sharon is always saying he takes after me, so I reminded her of that.

The report I remember most vividly from school is the one I destroyed before I got home, telling my parents I'd lost it. Three words stood out, and still do: "Must try harder".

8. No shock over Robbie

While most people were shocked at Robbie Di Matteo being sacked this week, it did not surprise me in the slightest – I predicted it in this column back in March. It was always obvious he was never Roman's choice but you have to say "well done" to Roberto for not just taking the job but winning the Champions League and FA Cup, which they will never be able to take away from him. I'm sure they will get through a lot more high-profile managers than him but will they ever do that again?

I was not surprised to see Rafael Benitez take on the role either. I am sure his people will have been urgently working the phone to Russia, because it is a great opportunity for anyone to have six months with the players Chelsea have. He will be thinking if he does really well, like Roberto last year, they might even give it to him permanently.

Rafa was one of the first managers to "rotate". I'm hoping he'll rotate most of his best players out of the team when we play them next month.

News
people
Sport
FootballGerman sparks three goals in four minutes at favourite No 10 role
News
Rumer was diagnosed with bipolarity, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder: 'I was convinced it was a misdiagnosis'
peopleHer debut album caused her post-traumatic stress - how will she cope as she releases her third record?
Sport
A long jumper competes in the 80-to-84-year-old age division at the 2007 World Masters Championships
athletics
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Sport
Radamel Falcao was forced to withdraw from the World Cup after undergoing surgery
premier leagueExclusive: Reds have agreement with Monaco
Arts and Entertainment
'New Tricks' star Dennis Waterman is departing from the show after he completes filming on two more episodes
tvHe is only remaining member of original cast
Life and Style
Walking tall: unlike some, Donatella Versace showed a strong and vibrant collection
fashionAlexander Fury on the staid Italian clothing industry
Arts and Entertainment
Gregory Porter learnt about his father’s voice at his funeral
music
Arts and Entertainment
tvHighs and lows of the cast's careers since 2004
Life and Style
Children at the Leytonstone branch of the Homeless Children's Aid and Adoption Society tuck into their harvest festival gifts, in October 1936
food + drinkThe harvest festival is back, but forget cans of tuna and packets of instant mash
Sport
Lewis Hamilton will start the Singapore Grand Prix from pole, with Nico Rosberg second and Daniel Ricciardo third
F1... for floodlit Singapore Grand Prix
New Articles
i100
Life and Style
Couples have been having sex less in 2014, according to a new survey
life
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits
Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam