Mark Warburton has revealed that Charlie Kelman will not be leaving Queens Park Rangers on loan in January.
Kelman joined from Southend United last summer, but has spent the majority of his time in West London player for Rangers’ Under-23s, although the teenager has recently come into the first-team frame.
The striker made his Championship debut as a late substitute during QPR’s defeat to Bristol City last month, and has gone on to make three further substitute appearances, including Saturday’s FA Cup defeat to rivals Fulham at Loftus Road.
However, with Charlie Austin’s return to the club confirmed on the weekend, the youngster has been pushed further down the pecking order in what is already a competitive strike-department.
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But Warburton admitted that he doesn’t want Kelman to leave this month despite Austin’s arrival.
He told West London Sport: “Bringing a player in gives us four strikers but we need to make sure we have cover. If we get an injury then we’re back down to three strikers.
“We’ve got to make sure we look after QPR and each individual player’s development. At 19 years of age, getting pitch time at QPR in the first team is a tremendous part of his development.”
This is a difficult situation for Warburton.
Whilst he clearly sees potential in Kelman, echoed by his recent involvement with the first-team, the signing of Austin is clearly going to lower his chances of further opportunities.
And therefore, I believe that a loan deal would benefit the teenager far greater than staying at QPR and getting the odd appearance here and there, so it’ll be interesting to see how this one develops.