Michael Beale would have been forgiven for snatching at the first opportunity at a Premier League job with Wolves. But he should be commended for sticking with a club on the rise in QPR.
When reports emerged of Beale being linked with the coaching vacancy at Wolves, a wave of inevitability crept over the footballing world that QPR were about to be left without a manager.
This would have been a mighty blow to the Hoops, who invested a lot in giving Beale his first job in management this summer after taking the precarious step to part ways with Mark Warburton.
You hear nothing but good things about Beale, but this was a move that could have gone very wrong for QPR.
On early evidence, the club’s hierarchy have been made to look quite astute as Beale has masterminded a superb start to the season that sees QPR sit top of the Championship – albeit with what feels like all other 23 clubs breathing down their necks.
All this looked like it may have been undone this week when it was revealed that Wolves had identified him as their first choice to replace Bruno Lage.
Truthfully, he was actually their second option, as they had already failed to tempt Julen Lopetegui to the West Midlands.
That felt like an ambitious pursuit that unsurprisingly fell on deaf ears for personal reasons. They then went from one end of the scale to the other with their next pick.
A manager in Beale, who has done bloody well in a short time, but has just three months of experience as a manager.
As good as he could prove to be, the timing of this potential appointment felt off as it was coming at least a year too soon.
With that said, when a Premier League club comes calling for a Championship manager, it often ends only one way. The second-tier boss jumps ship, because of course they do. It is a shot at the big time in the league all managers want to compete in.
Beale himself has not been shy to admit that it is his ambition to eventually manage in the Premier League.
There is nothing wrong with that, and at a time when honesty is so rare, this is refreshing.
And if Beale took the first opportunity to realise his dream he could be forgiven, but it would leave a bitter taste in the mouth of QPR and football fans as a whole.
He has committed to a project at Loftus Road with the ultimate goal of getting the club back into the Premier League within the next couple of seasons at the latest.
So if he gave them the finger at the earliest opportunity, it would have made getting him a wasted exercise as QPR would have been back to square one once again.
It was welcome news that Beale has seen the light on this occasion and opted to stick with QPR.
A move back to the Midlands would have surely been tempting after he masterfully made Steven Gerrard look like a competent manager at Villa Park.
Beale deserves a lot of plaudits for realising that QPR has the potential to be a better prospect than Wolves, at least in the short-term.
That may seem baffling right now as QPR for some still have a stigma after the prior mess created by Tony Fernandes and Harry Redknapp. What a crazy time had by all that was.
They are a very different proposition now, with a newfound focus placed on young and enthusiastic players.
Ilias Chair and Chris Willock are ready for the Premier League whenever they get the call.
Wolves, meanwhile, are a club that have slowly stagnated over the past couple of years. After initially being so fun to watch under Nuno Espirito Santo, this turned into a whole lot of boredom by the end.
And this trend continued under Lage, with the club struggling for goals and the funk that made them many people’s second favourite team a few years ago.
For young managers like Beale, the decision on who to join when interest comes is a major one.
He only needs to look at how Rob Edwards fared at Watford to see how badly it can go wrong if you make a poor choice.
And for top prospects in the Football League, Wolves are one to avoid as they are steadily becoming likely candidates for relegation.
While Wolves are going backwards, QPR are building something quite special and that is only helped by Beale’s decision to stick around.
QPR supporters would have likely snapped your hands off if they were proposed a play-off spot before the season started.
The race for promotion in the Championship is arguably as tight as it has ever been, and QPR have not had a better chance to sneak into the top two in quite some time.
Had Beale gone, they would have likely had to forget about a play-off spot. But now they will be galvanised and more focused than ever to produce something unforgettable.
QPR could be a force this season, while Wolves are left with their tail between their legs after being snubbed by two managers. Fair f***s to Beale for seeing the bigger picture.
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