London Football News

Derby County could beat QPR to Clarke loan deal

QPR are reportedly confident they can win the race to sign Jack Clarke on loan from Tottenham – but the player has indicated he would prefer a move to Derby County.

Football Insider say Rangers believe they are well placed to beat several other interested Championship clubs, including Nottingham Forest, Derby and Fulham, to the loan signing of Clarke this month.

Clarke has returned to Spurs following an unsuccessful spell back on loan at his former club Leeds United.

Spurs are keen for the youngster to go back out on loan in order for him to play first-team football during the second half of the season.

Reports suggest they would like him to join a London club in order to get used to living in the capital, but Clarke would prefer to be in the north in order to be closer to his family.

That could leave Derby, who are very keen to snap Clarke up, in pole position.

Taking Clarke on loan would no doubt lead to QPR boss Mark Warburton being even more determined to loan out Olamide Shodipo this month.

Winger Shodipo is fit again after injury and came on as a substitute against Swansea for his first outing since the opening day of the season.

But he already faces stiff competition for his place with the likes of Ebere Eze, Bright Osayi-Samuel and Marc Pugh in the squad and the arrival of Clarke would push Shodipo even further down the pecking order at Loftus Road.

“He’s another player that needs to go and play,” Warburton recently told West London Sport.

“You can stick them on the bench and say ‘It’s great to see them on the bench’. Go and play 15 games or 18 games.

“Go and terrorise a (lower) level, come back with rave reviews as Ilias did from Stevenage, have 10 clubs phone in the summer wanting to take you on loan.

“It’s a challenge for these boys to go out. The best players go out and they learn from it.