‘Mixed feelings’ – QPR boss Cifuentes reflects on home debut draw against Bristol City

QPR head coach Marti Cifuentes felt there were both positives and negatives to take away from his side’s 0-0 draw against Bristol City at Loftus Road.

Cifuentes was given a warm welcome by supporters in his first home game in charge, but QPR failed to register a shot on target as their winless run extended to 11 matches.

The result means the west Londoners remain 23rd in the Championship table, five points from safety, yet the Spaniard still felt he saw moments of promise.

“[I have] mixed feelings,” Cifuentes said of his Loftus Road debut. “From one side I’m impressed, we had amazing support for 95 minutes. I was looking forward to delivering a good performance and a victory. Unfortunately, we couldn’t deliver the victory.

“I’m looking forward to keep building the togetherness I felt today with the supporters and the players. We can be really strong in the future at home.

“The result was not enough according to what we wanted, but at the same time in the performance there were some small improvements from last week and that is what I’m looking for.”

Picture: Rob Avis – QPR vs Bristol City, 11th November 2023, SkyBet Championship

Even though QPR struggled to create goalscoring opportunities, there were signs that Cifuentes’ determination to change the team’s style of play and try to dominate possession were paying off.

They attempted 505 passes against Bristol City, which is almost 300 more than they did in Gareth Ainsworth’s final home game in charge against Leicester City.

“We have a long way to go still,” admitted Cifuentes. “I am glad people can see glimpses. I really want to make sure this is the way for us to win football games.

“That is my task, and we are going to try to play a style that is about using the ball to break lines and create chances, and so we can counter-press and regain the ball high up the pitch. If we do this we will create more chances than we concede.

“I want to produce results and the best way to win football games is this style.

“I see a stable team, a team that is trying to have a clear identity of how they want to play from the back, the courage to pass the ball and trust each other, to try to press high.

“Everything we are doing about building up from behind, the purpose is to arrive in better conditions to the box. It is not just to look fancy, it’s to create situations where we can fill the box. Today we just missed a killer instinct in the last third.

“Every day since my arrival has been a step forward. When I see today’s performance I think we are taking steps. We need to be critical and aware as well. So far it has not been enough to win games in this league. We miss a little bit of end product and the capacity to break lines. If the players just keep working as they are, I’m sure we can get better.”


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