This article forms part of our The Ones That Got Away feature series, which is where Football Transfer Tavern take a look back at players linked with moves in the past, and see how they would have made an impact had they signed for the interested side.
Queens Park Rangers avoided the drop after promotion to the top flight in 2011/12, but their final day survival may not have been required had they brought in a Premier League winner in the winter window.
Back in January 2012, Carlos Tevez was a hotly sought-after prospect. A few months earlier, he had incensed his Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini for allegedly refusing to warm up in a Champions League group game at Bayern Munich, prompting the Italian to declare that he wanted Tevez out of the club.
Offers came in from across Europe for the striker, with both Inter and AC Milan vying for the Argentinian’s signature.
While neither offer came close to City’s valuation for Tevez, an unlikely name was included among Tevez’s potential suitors – that of Queens Park Rangers.
Backed by new owner Tony Fernandes – who had overseen QPR spending almost five times more than the summer before their promotion to the Premier League – the Hoops were linked with an unlikely swoop for Tevez as Mark Hughes (not long in the job after Neil Warnock’s sacking) sought to keep the side up with the team 17th in the Premier League.
A move under Warnock may have been unthinkable – due to the history between Tevez and Warnock’s Sheffield United side that were relegated in 2007. Warnock even insisted Tevez should leave the country following his behaviour in Munich.
But a loan move (via the Guardian at the time) for the striker was mooted – with Hughes even suggesting that Tevez could help City’s cause in a QPR shirt as the Welshman attempted to lure his former employers into a deal as the January window entered its final days.
A move never occurred – and Tevez ended up facing QPR on that fateful day in May 2012 that saw City secure the title in the most dramatic fashion.
With QPR surviving nonetheless, perhaps there is little regret over missing out on Tevez. Though contrary to Hughes’ claims, perhaps a loan move would have worked against City with Mancini’s men only just squeezing past the Hoops on that historic afternoon.
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