Queens Park Rangers are languishing at the bottom of the table, with four points, no wins and a growing sense of unease in the stands. Nicolas Anelka is currently languishing in the Chinese Super League (no disrespect to any Chinese football fans, but Shanghai Shanhua is a far cry from the likes of Chelsea and Manchester City).
Recently linked with Rangers (via the Daily Mail), could the former French front-man become the savior for the not-so-super hoops?
Let's look at the facts. Nicolas Anelka has scored 137 goals across the English, French, Turkish, Chinese and Spanish Leagues in 18 years (via Soccerbase). Queens Park Rangers are currently missing a striker who can score more than one every few games, with Bobby Zamora and Djibril Cisse showing less than poachers' instincts in front of goal so far this season.
The duo have only scored four goals between them in 11 League games (via Soccerbase). Needless to say, Rangers need a proven goalscorer if they are going to start winning.
Nicolas Anelka is commonly referred to as the Incredible Sulk (via BBC). Another egotistical, self-bemoaning, petulant footballer at the club—surely not, I hear you cry. Well, surprisingly, I say yes.
Anelka may well have fallen out with managers in the past, and he may well have caused a ruckus in various squads (via BBC)—but he has a passion and fire for the game that many players at Loftus Road do not seem to be currently exhibiting.
What some consider to be sulky could also be seen as determination and drive by others. And that characteristic is desperately missing from the Rangers' changing room at the moment.
Would Nicolas Anelka would be a good fit at QPR?
With West Ham and Liverpool also being touted as possibilities for the Frenchman (via the Daily Mail), QPR may have a fight on their hands to land his signature. However, with the financial backing from Tony Fernandes—and Rangers' needs greater than the other clubs mentioned—this may result in a strong bid being made from West London.
Is Nicolas Anelka trouble? Possibly. But I'm sure QPR fans would be willing to tolerate that for six months, if he scores crucial goals, keeps them in the Premier League and aggravates his former club Chelsea when they visit on January 2nd.
And Mark Hughes would most likely add Anelka to his Christmas card list if he keeps him in a job.