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Hughes hopes to harness Taarabt

Adel Taarabt

QPR manager Mark Hughes feels Adel Taarabt can channel his "free spirit" to become a major player in the Barclays Premier League.

The 22-year-old Moroccan was instrumental in helping QPR win the npower Championship last year, but this season the former Tottenham midfielder endured a difficult relationship with ex-manager Neil Warnock and was linked with a big-money move to France.

However, Hughes feels Taarabt can make it to the top, and said: "Adel has been a free spirit in the past, just played off the cuff, which is fine and you can affect games at a lower level, but at Premier League level you have to have discipline to your play, understand the game and be involved totally from the first minute to the last minute."

Taarabt netted his first goal in the top flight on Saturday as Arsenal were beaten 2-1 at Loftus Road to boost Rangers' survival hopes.

Hughes added: "You cannot just flit in and flit out. He really understood he needed to do the defensive work well and the goal was really well taken.

"Adel is an undoubted talent, he just needs to harness it. If he listens to what myself and the coaches tell him, then he will be a top Premier League player. He just has to understand how he can use his ability to the best and he is learning very quickly."

QPR certainly have a tough run-in as they aim for Premier League survival, with a trip to Old Trafford next weekend and games against Tottenham and Chelsea to come before the final match of the season away at Manchester City.

But Hughes remains as positive as ever.

He said: "Our home form has been excellent of late, so if we can win all of our remaining home games and pick up something on our travels, then I feel we will have enough.

"We are probably ahead of what we felt we would have got from the last 10 games in terms of points because of the quality of opposition we have gone up against. If we can make sure that we can acquire wins in the games we highlighted to get three points on the board, then these results we have just had will really help us."