Poor old QPR. They remind me of an alcoholic sitting in a bar bemoaning his bad luck but telling anybody who will listen that everything will be fine after he has won the lottery in January.
Yesterday was a huge kick in the cobblers and has left the Hoops curled up in agony in the corner of the Last Chance Saloon gasping for air. The last five games have yielded just one point and the joyous Noel predicted by all those following the Fernandes star has turned decidedly sour, so sour that I understand the Python team are currently planning a "Life of Tony" movie.
The trouble is, QPR, like West Ham last season, have thrown away far too many winnable home points. The Hoops have won just one home game from 9 - and that was lucky against a team of 9 players. Defeats at home to Bolton and Sunderland and draws at home to West Brom and Blackburn all represent vital points thrown away. There is a dangerous echo of West Ham here as we duplicated those results last season.
You survive by winning winnable home games, and QPR are running out of those! The target games now come down to home matches against Norwich, Swansea, Wolves, Fulham, Stoke and Wigan. That's 18 points which would take QPR to 34. Then it is a case of drawing 4 or 5 matches home or away. The trouble is, if 4 of those identified games end up as draws, QPR are then 8 points short, and their results so far make victories in all six of those games very unlikely. If you can't beat Blackburn and Sunderland at home, why should you reckon on beating Fulham, Wolves, Stoke and Norwich?
Warnock, of course, has been here before and by mid March had Shafting United sitting pretty on 32 points with some easy home games still to come. Then along came Tevez and...well the bleating started!
But at the moment Neil is smiling, ordering another stiff one and telling anybody who will listen that everything will be all right when his mate Tony Fernandes gives him a big cheque in January.
"Three or four players", he slurs, "We just need three or four players. And Tony will give me the money. Tony's a very rich man you know. He owns an airline. And a Formula 1 team. And he is going to build a shiny new stadium. After last night's defeat he will start telling everybody about it again. Just you wait and see. And we won't sell Faurlin. And there will be loads of quality players happy to join us despite our position in the table and the low attendancies to home games. They all want to play for me you see. And they all want to share a dressing room with Joey Barton. Barman, another drink. It's Christmas!"