Adel Taarabt: I was ahead of Robinho and Kaka at AC Milan - I don't understand why Harry Redknapp won't pick me for QPR

Taarabt has responded to Redknapp's stinging criticism that he is three-stone overweight by showing off his body and slamming Redknapp's training methods

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The Independent Football

Adel Taarabt has taken full aim at Queens Park Rangers manager Harry Redknapp following his claim that the Moroccan was “three-stone overweight” by heavily criticising his training methods and time spent actually taking training.

Redknapp slates 'overweight' Taarabt

Taarabt has been used sparingly by Redknapp this season, and his absence from a struggling QPR team came to a head following the 3-2 defeat to Liverpool on Sunday where Redknapp claimed Taarabt was unavailable for selection because he is unfit.

The 25-year-old has not taken well to Redknapp’s criticism – unsurprisingly – and in an interview with the Daily Mail, he spoke of the former Tottenham manager’s techniques on the training ground and laid the blame firmly on Redknapp for the entire squad being unfit.

“He spends most of the time in his office but when he gets off the phone he comes down to watch for five or 10 minutes - he never takes a session,” Taarabt told the Daily Mail. “That’s when he said he had it in mind to start me against Liverpool.’


“The training sessions aren’t the same standard as Milan, or what I would expect under another manager. They are not as intense, the players aren’t as motivated. It is the same as we used to do at Tottenham years ago. When we played West Ham he told the players ‘you’re not fit, you’re not this, you’re not that’.

“I said ‘but the problem is we don’t have any plan in the game, we don’t know how to press as a team. It’s not about just running around, you need to play with your brain’.”

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Having ended last season on-loan with AC Milan, Taarabt has used to Italian club as a comparison to what he experiences at Loftus Road. Having been selected in the Milan squad ahead of the likes of Brazilian duo Robinho and Kaka, Taarabt was at a loss to explain how he could not get into a QPR side that remains rooted to the bottom of the Premier League table.

“When I was playing at Milan, sometimes Kaka or Robinho weren’t getting in the team,” added Taarabt. “Then I come to QPR, and that’s not to disrespect my team-mates because I have a good relationship with them, but I was surprised I was not in the squad.

“When I came back from Milan, the QPR kitman said ‘you are no more No 10’. I never wanted to be No 10 but the fans asked the chairman for Adel to be 10 not 7 because of the legend Stan Bowles - they wanted me to have the 10 shirt.

“They said they had never seen an exciting player like this for 20 or 25 years, so I said to Tony Fernandes I will take it. Then this summer I was told I would be 27 so I said ‘OK, no problem’. I said nothing.

“I just think that obviously at QPR the fans love me, I love QPR and I love the fans. They are my club. You can’t break the relationship with me and the fans. He wants to get the fans against me.”

The interview, which was featured in the national newspaper on Tuesday two days after Redknapp launched the astonishing attack on his own player, was accompanied by pictures of Taarabt lifting up his shirt to expose a body that did not look overweight.