Hughes wary of Spurs new boys
Mark Hughes knows QPR will must shackle Mousa Dembele and Clint Dempsey if they are to get anything at Spurs on Sunday. The Hoops boss managed the pair in his spell at Fulham during the 2010/11 season in which he led the Cottagers to an eighth-placed finish. United States international Dempsey shone under Hughes, who can take much credit for bringing Dembele to the club from AZ Alkmaar. Fulham made a hefty profit on the 25-year-old when they sold him to Tottenham this summer and Hughes is well aware what a threat he poses on Sunday. "I've got huge regard for Mousa," the QPR manager said. "He is an outstanding football player and now he is at a club which, and this is no disrespect to Fulham, has a higher profile and is getting a lot more attention. "But he was still producing what people have seen in a short period of time, week in, week out for me and Martin Jol when I left. "He is an outstanding footballer and I always knew when he came to the Premier League that he would make an immediate impact. He certainly has done that. "He is technically very, very accomplished. He is able to play in a number of positions: he can play off the front, right up top, he can play in midfield, he can play in wide positions. That's the quality of the player that we are talking about. "I knew almost immediately when he went to Tottenham that he would enjoy it and be able to fit in very, very quickly because he is an outstanding football player." While Dembele will likely receive a warm reception whenever he returns to Fulham, Dempsey - much like Hughes - somewhat tarnished his time at the club by the way he departed. The 29-year-old made it clear that he wanted to leave SW6 and, after a move to Liverpool failed to materialise, joined Dembele at White Hart Lane. "If players want to move, they can instigate moves," Hughes said when asked about Dempsey. "That seems to have been the case but I am not privy to the details. "In the end, Fulham ideally I imagine would have liked to keep him. "Sometimes you have to accept that the player wants to move on and at that point you have to make sure you get the best deal for your club and I am sure that is what Fulham did. "Clint is a very single-minded young man and he is a guy that is very, very driven. "He wants to progress in his career and he does everything to that end. "He works exceptionally hard in training, had an outstanding season obviously when I was manager and probably topped that with the amount of goals he scored for Fulham last year. "You probably felt it was the right time for him to move. He was at the peak of his powers and he wanted to move on to pastures new. "It was a little bit of a surprise that he ended up at Spurs because there was a lot of talk he would go elsewhere." Dempsey could make his Premier League debut for Tottenham tomorrow in a match in which QPR are struggling for numbers due to injuries. The west Londoners' defence will be without Anton Ferdinand, Fabio, Stephane Mbia and Armand Traore for the White Hart Lane clash. Samba Diakite and Andrew Johnson are also unavailable, while Adel Taarabt is a doubt after picking up a hamstring injury yesterday.
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