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Hamalainen returning to QPR following end of Kilmarnock loan

The Scottish Premiership season was concluded earlier this week following the FA’s consultation with all 12 top-flight sides. For QPR loanee Niko Hamalainen, his strong season with Kilmarnock has also come to an end now heading back to London.

Born in Florida, Hamalainen came through the ranks of FC Dallas’ Academy before moving to QPR in 2014. However, first team minutes for the EFL Championship side have been hard to come by, with Hamalainen earning only six combined appearances at QPR.

After an unsuccessful loan spell with LAFC in 2019, Hamalainen joined Kilmarnock and became a starter in the SPFL. In total this season, the 21-year-old has made 32 appearances in Scotland, registering two assists in league play.

His loan was not extended by Kilmarnock however and could very well be searching for a new club this summer. Hamalainen’s current contract with QPR is set to expire June 30th, but could be pushed longer due to the pause of the EFL Championship season.

“It is never easy to see players depart the club, especially in these circumstances where the guys have not had the chance to say goodbye to the crowd and the fans have not had the opportunity to thank the players for their contribution,” Kilmarnock manager Alex Dyer said in an interview with the club’s website.

Eligible to represent both the U.S. Men’s National Team and Finland, Hamalainen will also have a decision to make regarding his international future. Mainly he’s played for Finland’s Youth National Teams before earning his first senior cap in Jan. 2019 in a friendly against Estonia.

He was also rewarded by U.S. Under-23 Men’s National Team head coach Jason Kreis back in Aug. 2019, being called up to an American team for the first time at any level.

A talented and versatile left back, Hamalainen will have a major decision to make over the summer with the 2020 European Championships pushed to 2021. Finland qualified for the summer tournament for the first time in the country’s history after posting a 6-0-4 record during qualifying.

Hamalainen may find it tough representing the USMNT with several talented left backs in the system. Regardless, the young defender excelled in Scotland this season which could see him earn a new contract domestically and a new challenge in the United States.


  1. Somehow I believe he has a chance at the left back position second only to Antonee Robinson, in my opinion.

  2. Good luck to his next season. He’s a real LB and not a converted one, (Lima, or Dest). He was a starter, for a 1st team, this past season,( Gloster, & Vines). He’s been in Europe since’ 14, and he’s Olympic U23 age, (Gasper, Lovitz, Sweat, and Hollingshead). I hope he chooses US over Finland.

  3. the problem with all the serial loan crap is if one works but they’re too cheap to buy it’s on to the next place where half the time they collect splinters. rarely does it seem the loan pays off. they often seem to just burn through a contract rotated around several places. i wish we would look less at name brands and more at where we fit in the teams we sign. if you sign straight to Kilmarnock for slightly less money then you stay put and grow.

  4. bummer. was hoping they’d buy him.
    couple years at Kilmarnock, followed by a year or two at Rangers, and then who knows what.
    hope QPR’s got a plan for him.


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