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The Frenchman has lost his place in the Hoops' starting XI in recent weeks, but the 48-year-old confirms the former Lazio and Liverpool man is still a key member of the squad

Mark Hughes has insisted that Djibril Cisse remains a key member of his QPR squad, despite not starting the Frenchman for the previous three Premier League games.

Cisse started the Hoops' opening two games of the campaign and has featured as a substitute in their following fixtures, but is yet to score this term.

The 31-year-old hit struck six times in eight appearances last term, although was sent off twice.

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“He started the first two games and then I changed things around with different formations and different challenges,” Hughes told reporters.

“I just felt Bobby and Andy would help us in those games. So he’s gone out of the team.

“We know exactly what Djibril gives us. He’s an outstanding finisher. As a team, we’re strong and compact and we have enough quality about us to be able to release Djibril at the right time to show what he can do.

“As I said, we haven’t quite got the solidarity in terms of performance to do that yet. But even if Djibril isn’t in the team, he’s a great impact sub to be able to bring on and change games.

“The different type of forwards I’ve got is a comfort to me. It allows me to make changes to personnel and playing different opposition, we can pose different threats to whoever we’re playing against. He’s very much in my thoughts.”

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