Jeff Hendrick completed a loan move from Newcastle United to Queens Park Rangers on deadline day – and is targeting promotion to the Premier League.
Hendrick had not started a single Premier League game this season before his January switch. Indeed, his only four appearances included three off the bench in the league and one start in the Carabao Cup.
After making 23 appearances in all competitions last season, his reduced gametime prompted a desire for an exit.
Middlesbrough wanted to keep him in the north east. But the answer came instead in the shape of QPR. They have taken him down to the Championship on loan for the rest of the season.
Currently fourth in the table, the West London outfit are aiming to win promotion by the end of the campaign.
And after signing up, Hendrick – who was celebrating his 30th birthday – insisted such a target is within reach.
He told QPR’s website: “It’s been a bit of a crazy birthday, just waiting for this to happen, but I am really excited.
“I have been following the team throughout this season and you are in a good position in the league. Hopefully, I can come in and help give that last push to get promoted.”
— QPR FC (@QPR) February 1, 2022
After adding that he thinks QPR will be the “right fit”, Hendrick confessed he was eager to get away from Newcastle.
A new era is taking shape at St James’ Park, where two deadline-day signings joined three additions from earlier in the month. But Hendrick knew he needed gametime.
He added: “Anyone who knows me will know I will be disappointed with the game time I have got this season. So I wanted to get out, get games and enjoy my football.
“I wasn’t just going to sit around. A big thing for me is to push myself and enjoy my football.”
QPR boss explains Jeff Hendrick addition
Hendrick has played in the Premier League with Burnley and Newcastle. Before that, he was a Championship player at Derby County.
His experience at both levels will be beneficial to QPR, according to their manager Mark Warburton.
He said: “I am delighted to bring Jeff in.
“We are always looking to add experience and quality to our ranks, especially ahead of such an important stage of the season.
“Jeff has shown his quality at the highest level on the international stage and in the Premier League.
“He also possesses that Championship experience, too, which can be so important.
“Everyone you speak to speaks so highly of Jeff, of his character and his work ethic and there is no doubt he will add another layer of quality to the squad.”