Santos poised for QPR move

GEORGES Santos is today poised to leave Ipswich Town and sign for Championship rivals Queens Park Rangers on a free transfer.Santos' agent, Mick Mills, has been in negotiations with the London club and the two parties are close to agreeing a deal.

GEORGES Santos is today poised to leave Ipswich Town and sign for Championship rivals Queens Park Rangers on a free transfer.

Santos' agent, Mick Mills, has been in negotiations with the London club and the two parties are close to agreeing a deal.

QPR manager Ian Holloway today said: “We are being allowed to talk to Santos, but I am sure we will have to wait until Monday or Tuesday to finalise things.

“We have held tentative talks with his agent and we have talked about an offer and explained our wage structure. We have made Santos an offer and we are not going to up it.

“I hope to have things sorted out by Monday or Tuesday.

“He can play midfield and centre half and I like the way he plays in both positions.

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“He is the sort of player we need and he is a player I have had my eye on for a while.

“I wanted to bring him in last year, but Ipswich would not let him go.

“He plays the way I want, he is very quick, a great communicator and I am looking forward to working with him.”

Santos, 33, was offered a two-year contract at Loftus Road and would have to pass a medical to complete the deal.

He had been targeted as a replacement for former QPR defender Clarke Carlisle, who joined Leeds United earlier this summer.

QPR's next friendly is away at Bristol Rovers on Tuesday, but it's unlikely that Santos would have recovered from his broken nose, sustained in Ipswich Reserves' 2-1 defeat at Barnet on Wednesday.

This was the fourth time he had broken his nose in his career and he could not head the ball in a training session at Ipswich yesterday. Santos said: “My headache has gone, but I did not head the ball in training and will have to wait five or six days to do some headers.

“I have to be careful, I do not want to have any more operations.”

A more realistic option for him to play his first game for QPR would be their next home match, against Crystal Palace, on Saturday, July 31.

Ipswich Town manager Joe Royle today wished Santos well for the future. He said: “It has not gone wrong for him at Ipswich and he did a good job last year.

“I brought him in as cover for defence and centre midfield, but I said to him that his opportunities are going to be limited this season.

“I hope he does fine, apart from against us. He is a nice man, a good professional, looks after himself well and is very fit.”

Santos, who still had one year left on his contract at Portman Road, joined Ipswich in July 2003 from Grimsby. He started 28 league matches last season, but his form dipped and he was pushed further down the pecking order when Matt Elliott joined Ipswich on loan from Leicester in March.

With Jason De Vos moving to Portman Road in May, Santos was deemed surplus to requirements and QPR, Burnley and Stoke all expressed an interest in signing him.

With Santos on the verge of joining QPR, it could open the way for Joe Royle to bring in a new player before the start of the season. Royle had previously stated that he is after a strong striker who can hold up the ball and another midfielder.

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