Premier League clubs Newcastle United and Queens Park Rangers (QPR) have canceled their respective holiday parties because they are having bad seasons. The aforementioned players are newcomers to the English top flight, but they won’t enjoy one of the league’s great traditions — not this year at least.
QPR is faces the real threat of relegation after enduring the worst start in Premier League history. Rangers sit in 19th place after 17 games. The players, not new manager (and reputed Scrooge) Harry Redknapp decided to cancel the holiday party earlier this month, according to the Guardian.
When asked why, a club spokesman said “Have you seen the league table?”
The BBC reports Redknapp supports the players’ decision.
“I’m not a fan of Christmas parties and we’ve got nothing to celebrate,” said Redknapp. “We need to focus on our football now — it’s the busiest time of the year.”
Newcastle finished fifth in 2011-12. The club hoped to build on last season’s success, but it has struggled mightily this term. Manager Alan Pardew thinks 15th place gives his team no reason to celebrate, according to the Press Association.
“It’s out of respect to our fans and what we have served them this year. There’s no party for us, and the same for the staff. That’s how it should be.
“Trust me, there have been horrible things said about our group and our staff, but we are together, and we are fighting and trying to put it right. The fans have to realize this isn’t just a game to us, it’s our livelihoods and our profession. It pays our bills. Not only that, we have to have a certain pressure of entertaining our fans, who pay good money to come and watch.
“Looking at all those factors, we have not done enough this year. That’s why I think it’s right we called it off.”
The holiday parties of Premier League teams often include drinking, dancing and other shenanigans. Sometimes players head to Dublin, Glasgow or another nearby city to blow off steam. Granero and the others will have to look on in envy as photos of other teams’ parties make headlines this month.