Unsung hero in Hoops

Alejandro Faurlin’s form for Queens Park Rangers this season has not gone unnoticed. The Argentinean midfield maestro has impressed in his maiden season in the Premier League as QPR have made a solid start back to life in the Barclays Premier League after a 16-year exile.

Operating in the central role of midfield, Faurlin has already moulded a good partnership with the controversial Joey Barton and has continued to operate well alongside Shaun Derry, after forming a formidable double attack at the heart of the Rangers midfield with the veteran midfielder last season, as Rangers secured promotion to the Premier League.

After joining the R’s in 2009 from Instituto de Córdoba, Faurlin enjoyed an excellent first season picking up both the Players’ and Supporters’ Player of the Year accolade in a season to remember for the Argentine midfielder.

The following season was one of mixed emotions for Faurlin after the joy of promotion and a lingering court case which threatened to spoil Rangers’ party. Their place in the Premier League came under serious jeopardy after the club were charged with breaching strict third -party ownership rules concerning his move from Instituto in 2009.

Luckily for Rangers and Faurlin, the club were found guilty of just two out of the seven charges and escaped with a £875,000 fine, but more importantly no point’s deduction.

Faurlin has since come out in the media and claimed he would have killed himself had Rangers been docked points and missed out on promotion.

“We were so happy it ­finished in the right way, otherwise I would have killed myself. From the beginning of the season to the end we were ­always top of the league and worked hard for every single point.

“Imagine how I would have felt if I had let down my team. It wasn’t about me, just about my contract. But my name was there and I really felt it.”

Faurlin, now nearly halfway through his third season at the club, has reiterated in the press at  how much he is enjoying life at Loftus Road and how pleased he is that he decided to join the West London club, turning down a number of clubs in Italy, Spain and Greece.

Inter Milan were believed to be extremely interested in securing the services of Faurlin however it is believed that Faurlin turned down the chance to sign for the Italian club after Jose Mourinho could not guarantee him first-team football.

Faurlin, now aged 25, has without doubt a very bright future ahead of him. There has already been speculation that Napoli are looking to sign the midfielder, with Chelsea and Arsenal also monitoring the Argentine’s form. Faurlin has insisted he is happy at Loftus Road, but it is a matter of time before the midfielder moves on to a bigger club in Europe.

However the notion that he is the most underrated player in the League is one I would strenuously disagree with. Faurlin is currently in his first season in the Barclays Premier League so it would be unfair to judge his overall potential in the league until at least a season, although he has proved to be very consistent as thus far.

In my eyes the likes of Micah Richards of Manchester City and Lucas Leiva of Liverpool are two far more illustrious examples of a player’s potential being underrated. Richards is continuously being overlooked by national manager Fabio Capello despite being in outstanding form for table-toppers Manchester City. His versatility is another reason why he should be in the England squad, but clearly Fabio disagrees.

 Lucas is without doubt one of the best defensive midfielders in the Premier League and the progress he has made over the last few years has been nothing short of remarkable. Albeit he has been given praise in the media, in my eyes he has not been given enough, he has been consistently good for a sustained period of time, and is currently one of the top midfielders in Europe let alone the Premier League.

Although Faurlin is without doubt a talented midfielder who will inevitably one day play for a top team in Europe, it is too hasty a statement to make to say he is the most underrated player in the league. A player’s potential and form should be judged over the time span of a year or more, not three months into a season.

Sean Gallagher

Leave a Comment