The Hornets have not given up on signing Samba Diakite on loan despite Queens Park Rangers boss Harry Redknapp claiming the player won't be leaving, the Watford Observer understands.

Diakite has been frozen out by Redknapp for several months and has only appeared once for the R’s this season - and that came in the Capital One Cup in August when he was substituted in the 56th minute.

It has been reported that Watford held talks with the combative midfielder last week about a loan move with a view to a permanent deal.

But a number of injuries saw Diakite return to the QPR squad on Saturday as an unused substitute.

Before the match, Redknapp told West London Sport: "No, he’s not [joining Watford]. He’s in the squad for tomorrow.

"He played for the reserves in midweek and played very well. He’s a player that might be very much back in the picture again now.

"Hopefully we can get him going and get the best out of him, and if we can he’s a very good player."

The Mali international, who turns 25 on Friday, initially joined Rangers on loan from Nancy in January 2012 before the move was made permanent in the summer, when he signed a four-year deal.

Diakite made ten appearances last season before Mark Hughes was replaced by Redknapp.

He made a further five outings for QPR before heading to the African Cup of Nations where he was injured in Mali’s fourth game of the tournament.

Diakite only made one more appearances for QPR last season, which means he has not featured in a league match for more than a year.

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