Hughes expects Taarabt to stay
Mark Hughes is confident Adel Taarabt will stay at QPR in January after admitting the Moroccan will be key to the club's chances of staying in the Barclays Premier League.
Taarabt found life hard in the top flight last season with rumours of indiscipline off the pitch and poor form on it leading many to claim the 23-year-old was unable to cut it at the highest level. But Hughes seems to have got the best out of the former Tottenham man since, leading to suggestions Arsenal may move for the player.
"It wouldn't surprise me if clubs were looking at him but I know for a fact that he is very happy here and he sees his future here," Hughes said. "This is the best place for him because we support him, we give him the best chance to be successful, and he understands that."
Taarabt has missed a large chunk of QPR's season thanks to a hamstring injury, but he is now fully fit and has impressed Hughes since he returned to the Rangers starting XI almost three weeks ago.
Indeed Taarabt's form has been so good that Hughes rates him up there with some of the best players he has worked with.
Given that the Welshman has played in teams containing Ryan Giggs, Paul Scholes and Roy Keane, and has managed stars like Carlos Tevez at Manchester City, such a compliment should not be taken lightly.
"He's an outstanding player," Hughes said. "In terms of ability alone he is arguably one of the best players I have played or worked with.
"Obviously that is not the whole package. There are still parts of his game that he has to work on and he understands that.
"He is working exceptionally hard for the team, which in the past has been a criticism of him. That's not the case now.
"He is in a really good place now in terms of his attitude to his work and what he is able to produce on the pitch. We are really pleased with what he is showing on the pitch."