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Jol and Redknapp talk about Zamora

last updated Monday 01st April 2013, 12:44 PM

Fulham manager Martin Jol
Fulham manager
Martin Jol
Martin Jol
Former Fulham striker Bobby Zamora has been passed fit to tonight face his old team-mates in a must-win game for QPR.

Zamora left Craven Cottage for Loftus Road in January 2012 but his former manager Martin Jol has few regrets at losing a player with a dubious fitness record.

'Bobby wanted to move,' said Jol ahead of the west London derby. 'He felt he could help QPR. Hopefully, after our game, he will help them. If he is fit he can help any team because he is a good striker.

'When he played he did ever so well but he missed 30 or 40 per cent of the games.

'If he was fit he was selected for the national team.

'He has got all the qualities, but when Bobby was not there we had a problem up front and that is why we changed it and now we have Bryan Ruiz and Hugo Rodallega and Dimitar Berbatov and most of the time they are fit to select.'

Former Fulham striker Bobby Zamora
Former Fulham striker
Bobby Zamora
Bobby Zamora
QPR boss Harry Redknapp, meanwhile, has told Fulham fans that Zamora deserves a hero's welcome on his return to Craven Cottage.

Zamora's goals helped fire Fulham into the 2010 Europa League final and he spent four years at the club before moving to QPR in January 2010.

'I went to watch them play Juventus that night (in the Europa League). That was one of the best footballing nights I have ever been to.

'Fulham went 1-0 down and they were something like 4-1 down on aggregate (but came back to win 4-1 on the night) and Bobby ripped them to pieces.

'What a night of football, I loved every minute of it.

After starting the season with a bang, scoring four times in his first five matches, Zamora has only found the net once since last September.

But Redknapp believes his return to fitness after overcoming an ankle injury and a dose of the flu is vital to QPR's chances of Premier League survival.

QPR manager Harry Redknapp'He is important to us. He holds the ball up, he knows what he is doing and he knows how to play. Going back to Fulham will be interesting for him,' Redknapp said.

Jol and Redknapp are big pals away from the managerial dugout, incidentally, but there will be precious little goodwill on show when their two teams meet at Craven Cottage tonight.

A win will place mid-table Fulham just one short of Jol's 40-point safety target while QPR, who lie second from bottom on goal difference, are scrapping for their Premier League lives.

Jol insists there will be no favours, although he believes Redknapp can still secure survival for his team.

'I have no preference [who goes down],' said Jol. 'But I won't say I would like them [QPR] to go down because I like Harry Redknapp - he's a fantastic man and good manager.

'At the end the league won't lie. They will fight to the end because there's still 24 points (to play for) and that's a lot.

'If QPR manage to win four or five they still have a chance to stay up.'

Jol is not content with just securing survival for Fulham, he wants the team to finish as high as possible.

Asked about his target, he said: 'The higher the better for the club and for the players, because some of them have bonuses in their contract if they are in the top six, top eight, top 10. 'But that's a financial thing. I would like to be in the top 10.'

Source Frank Malley at Sportsmail
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