‘I see progress in the team’ – Marti Cifuentes happy with QPR showing against West Brom

Marti Cifuentes felt his QPR side’s performance in their 2-2 draw against West Brom was a sign of the progress the team has made under his guidance.

Rangers were eight points from safety when Cifuentes took over as head coach at Loftus Road in October, but a Sam Field brace against his former club helped move them a point clear of the relegation zone and into 19th place in the Championship.

The Spaniard saw his side restrict the promotion chasers to just two shots on target, with QPR missing a number of chances, including a Michael Frey penalty, to win the game.

“Today is a day to praise the guys for the 75 minutes we played from minute one to when we scored the first goal, and all of the second half plus all the minutes after they scored the second goal [in the 27th minute],” said Cifuentes.

“Those minutes in between when we scored, we became a little more passive in our approach.

“We need to believe in ourselves and be brave in our approach because when we did we played perhaps the best 45 minutes of my time as manager.

“As long as we play as we did before 1-0 and in the second half then I am sure we are going to pick up a lot of points before the end of the season.

“I am aware that every game is different. It is impossible to expect we can play 90 mins against Middlesbrough [on Saturday] at the level we did the last 45 because it’s football and the opposition will prepare the game.

“But I see progress in the team. I see a team that has a clear identity and is brave on the ball and tries to press as high as we can. We are well structured when we need to be.

“The reality is we have only 39 points and will need more than this at the end of the season.”

The game against West Brom was QPR’s first since the passing of club legend Stan Bowles.

Tributes were paid to the man who scored 96 goals in 315 appearances for the club both ahead of kick-off and at half-time, and Cifuentes hoped the game was a fitting tribute to Bowles.

“I enjoyed it [the game] a lot. I like when my team plays well,” he said.

“I am the one who is training them every day. I want to have fun, and today in the second half I had fun.

“I hope it is a good tribute to Stan, but we wanted not only to play good football but as well give him the three points. Hopefully we can do it on Saturday.”


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