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Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Ambitious, Wealthy QPR

Mirror/Derek McGovern - Figo's Helena to be put to Sword
If I had as much money as supermodel swordsman Flavio Briatore, I'd have it in a very safe bank.
I'd also have it in the bike shed, on a plane, in the Jacuzzi, in fact pretty much anywhere and with anyone, though chiefly Naomi Campbell.
Italian playboy and F1 boss Briatore has so much money he doesn't know who to do with it.
But the amazing thing is, he's a pauper compared to fellow QPR owners Bernie Ecclestone and Lakshmi Mittal, with whom he has launched a charm offensive at Loftus Road. Briatore's the charm, Ecclestone the offensive.
When the three go out to dinner, Briatore has revealed, it's the other two who generally pick up the tab, no doubt leaving Flavio to pick up the girls.
It's Briatore's plan to move QPR to a bigger stadium, one large enough to accommodate his wallet, and he has further shown his ambition by trying to sign Portuguese legend Luis Figo.
Swarthy Figo is not the player he was - in fact he's a five o'clock shadow of his former self - but Briatore knows he would pull in the crowds, leaving him free to try to pull Figo's impossibly beautiful supermodel wife Helena Svedin.
Qpr, moving up the Championship table as coolly as Briatore trying to pull a supermodel, are 6-1 with Bet365 to reach the play-offs this season and 12-1 to get promoted.
More intriguingly they get a 20-1 quote from Paddy Power to be playing in the Champions League before the end of 2012, and Figo is 7-1 to be at Loftus Road at the start of next season.
Additional reporting by John Shaw - Mirror

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