QPR’s Mackie determined to book place in Premier League

Queens Park Rangers top scorer Jamie Mackie can hardly wait to resume Championship duties against Norwich City – after his first taste of international action.

“I can’t wait to get going again,” he told the club’s official website. “Playing for Scotland was a massive moment in my career, but I love playing for QPR week in, week out.

“I had a taste of the top level last week and my sole aim now is to get QPR back to the Premier League this season.”

Mackie last faced the Canaries as a Plymouth player in 2009, and scored against them for Exeter in a pre-season friendly in 2007.

Though Rangers are top of the table and unbeaten in 10 matches – and yet to concede a goal at home in the league – he said he was fully aware of the threat posed by Paul Lambert’s side.

“This is a massive game for us,” he said. “They’re a very, very good side, but we are too.

“We always concentrate on what we can do, and if we produce the quality we know we’re capable of, then we’ll be just fine. But Norwich have made a solid start to the season and we’ll have to be at our best.”

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Mackie’s sudden promotion to international football, winning his first cap against the Czech Republic last week, has given him further reason to keep trying to knock in the goals for his club.

Scotland are not in action again until they face Northern Ireland in the Nations Cup in Dublin in February, but Mackie wants to continue his run of good form and convince manager Craig Levein to reintroduce him to the fold.

“I feel I am here on merit, the same as the other players,” Mackie said after the 3-2 defeat by Spain at Hampden Park.

“I think it’s been a brilliant experience and, now I’ve had a little taste, especially here at Hampden, I want more.

“It has given me more motivation to go back to my club and do my best. Like I say, I’ve had a little sniff of it and I want a lot more.”

Rangers team-mate Hogan Ephraim is hoping to follow Mackie into the international arena – but admits it will be much easier if his club are in the Premier League.

The former West Ham winger has the added luxury of being able to choose from three countries.

Ephraim said: “I qualify for England, Nigeria and the Republic of Ireland – but it will be easier to prove I’m worth a chance if we’re in the Premier League next season. The truth is you’re more likely to get looked at if you’re in the top league.”

Rangers have one doubt ahead of City’s visit, with defender Clint Hill suffering a stomach bug.