Transfer news: QPR lift the lid on why Andrew Johnson transfer to Crystal Palace was called off at the last minute

Striker was at the Eagles training ground to negotiate a deal but but a fee wasn't agreed before the 11pm deadline

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The Independent Football

Queens Park Rangers have released an official club statement on their website to clear up the transfer mess surrounding Andrew Johnson’s failed move to Crystal Palace on transfer deadline day yesterday night.

Johnson was at Palace’s training ground as the 11pm deadline approached, but despite the Eagles best efforts to try and push the deal through, the required agreements and paperwork were not completed in time and QPR confirmed that Johnson remains a Rangers player.

The club confirmed that they would’ve reluctantly allowed Johnson to leave the club if the deal suited all parties, but despite giving the 32-year-old permission to discuss a move the two clubs failed to reach an agreement and the deal was called off.

Speaking to the website, Johnson said: “It was a bit of a whirlwind last night, but I’m really pleased to still be a QPR player.

“The interest from Palace was flattering, but I never once asked for a transfer and like I said a few weeks back, I owe it to QPR – who stood by me when I was injured last season – to stay and help get this club back to the Premier League.

“I am one hundred per-cent committed to QPR and will continue to give my all to help us build on what has been a promising start to the season.”

The statement also said that Johnson, who has scored two goals in four appearances this season, remains in manager’s Harry Redknapp’s first team plans, and will compete with Bobby Zamora, Charlie Austin and youngster Tom Hitchcock to start in his attack.

Redknapp told “We reluctantly gave Andy the chance to speak to Palace, who are a club close to his heart. They were keen to offer him a two or three year deal and we felt we couldn’t hold him back from at least talking to them.

QPR do appear to be short on their attacking options at the moment, with just three first-team strikers on their books having released Djibril Cisse, Rob Hulse, Jay Bothroyd and DJ Campbell, while allowing  Loic Remy to leave on loan and selling Jamie Mackie to Nottingham Forest.

“However, when it became apparent we weren’t going to be able to get sufficient cover in ourselves in that department before the deadline, we knew we couldn’t let Andy go.”

He added: “Andy has been great for us in the opening month of the season and remains a key player for us.

“He’s committed and looking forward to the challenge of helping us challenge for a return to the Premier League.”

Redknapp could still bring in one or two names on-loan as he looks to bolster his squad, although he managed to complete the moves for Tottenham duo Benoit Assou-Ekotto and Tom Carroll on a season-long deal.

Redknapp claims Johnson remains in his first team plans