Gareth Ainsworth: R’s will ramp right up after international break

QPR boss Gareth Ainsworth is predicting his side will “ramp right up” after the upcoming international break at the start of September.

The Hoops suffered a 1-0 defeat to Championship table-toppers Ipswich Town last weekend but went close through Sinclair Armstrong and Morgan Fox in the first half.

Osman Kaykay also went close to giving the west Londoners the lead in the second half at Loftus Road, poking an effort wide from just in front of Vaclav Hladky’s goal.

QPR head to early promotion candidates Southampton on Saturday and take on Michael Carrick’s Middlesbrough before the first break of the 2023-24 season.

Ainsworth told the club’s YouTube channel after the defeat last weekend: “We have got a couple of games and then we have an international break.

“I’m saying we can get beat Southampton and Middlesbrough away. We get to the international break, and after that, I see this team ramping right up.

“We haven’t gone off like a train, like last year. We’re steady – probably where people expected us – but you wait.

“This team is going to achieve. There are some super players coming back. Jimmy Dunne, Jake Clarke-Salter and Lyndon Dykes. Some super players who weren’t playing and can really add to us.

Chris Willock played his first 45 minutes of the season before being replaced at half-time by new summer signing Jack Colback.

“He was withdrawn because he had nothing left in the tank,” added the former Wycombe boss.

“Chris missed a week of training and we accelerated his recovery to get him back into the team.

“He was great in the first half. He showed those touches which makes him one of the best players in this league.

“Please stick with us. That’s coming. Chris will get fitter from last weekend. Please get behind these boys. If you see them, say: ‘Well played,’ because they did play well.”

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