IF QPR need an enforcer to claw back their Premier League place – Karl Henry just put his hand up.
However, the combative midfielder reckons he’s more sinned against than sinner – just like new team-mate Joey Barton .
The two were daggers drawn when Wolves clashed with Rangers the season before last, and Henry joked he was ready to introduce himself as ‘Kelvin’ when the two finally met up pre-season – this time on the same team.
“Joey changes opposite me in the changing room,” said the new man, “and when we shook hands I was going to call myself Kelvin but he knew who I was.
“He’s a good lad, and when you play against someone it’s not always a true reflection of their character.
“People see me on the pitch as a bit of an arse at times, but when they meet me off it, hopefully they see someone different.”
But the man who was an inch from joining Hoops in 2006 when at Stoke admits he’s not the player to shirk a tackle.
Henry said: “If there’s a ball there to be won I’ll try and win it.
“A few years ago in the Premier League I got unfairly tagged as a dirty player - and that’s certainly not in my character.
“But I’m a ball winner and I like chasing back that maybe some midfielders are not so keen on and that’s part of a game. So if that makes me an enforcer – then I’m an enforcer.”
Henry faces former Wolves boss Mick McCarthy on Saturday when Hoops meet Ipswich at Loftus Road, with the midfielder confident he can put one over a manager who boosted his career at Molineux.
He said: “I’ve compared this (QPR) team to Wolves last year, and already the difference is this team has goals in it, and we struggled in that department at Wolves.
“Mick’s done a lot for me and I owe him a lot, and he knows how to get out of the Championship.
“I think it probably does add something to the game, but I would be doing myself an injustice if I said I give an extra 10 per cent just because I came up against someone I knew.”