x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

Premier League round-up: Redknapp hopes win at Chelsea boosts QPR's transfer push

Rodger's hails Suarez's "Messi-like" qualities, while Newcastle's Pardew expects Cisse to step up.

Qpr's Shaun Wright Phillips, second right, with team mates after his winner against former club Chelsea last night. Ian Walton / Getty Images
Qpr's Shaun Wright Phillips, second right, with team mates after his winner against former club Chelsea last night. Ian Walton / Getty Images

Harry Redknapp hopes last night's 1-0 Premier League victory over Chelsea will enable Queens Park Rangers to attract players in the transfer window after expressing his disappointment at missing out on Joe Cole.

Shaun Wright-Phillips fired an outstanding 78th-minute winner against his former club as QPR secured their first triumph at Stamford Bridge in three decades. Redknapp believes new signings are required if QPR, who remain at the foot of the table on goal difference, are to escape relegation.

Liverpool playmaker Cole topped Redknapp's wish list but the 31 year old has opted to return to boyhood club West Ham, according to the QPR manager.

"If I can improve the squad in the window it will give us a chance. This win is very important for us when it comes to signing players," Redknapp said.

He added: "They might think that now we do have a chance and it would be nice to try and help us get out of this mess and achieve something. Let's be up for the challenge.

"I lost Joe who would have been my first signing. He probably looked here and thought 'Harry I love you but you're not going to stay up'. I like Joe and he would have been good for me. He's West Ham and they love him there. I thought he was coming for sure but West Ham came in today."

The three points has invigorated QPR's battle against relegation and was the perfect response to their 3-0 surrender to Liverpool at Loftus Road last Sunday. Only goal difference separates them from 19th-placed Reading while they remain five points away from safety.

Chelsea interim manager Rafael Benitez rested Ramires, Juan Mata and Eden Hazard on the bench but still created more than enough chances to win a fifth successive match. The Spaniard insists his rotation policy was justified given the club's heavy workload.

"We were tired and weren't precise. We made a mistake and gave them their chance," Benitez said. "I don't regret the changes because we can't carry on with the same players in every game. If you're playing a team at the bottom of the table at home, you have to trust your players and I trust them."

Benitez admitted Fernando Torres, Chelsea's only striker, needed a rest but refused to elaborate on the club's pursuit of Demba Ba after Newcastle revealed their £7million striker is having talks at Stamford Bridge.

"I don't have any official information about the situation. Officially he's not our player," he said. "The club is working and hopefully we can see someone soon. Then we can talk about the player. If we can do the business quickly hopefully he'll be available for the weekend, but we can't say too much."

Elsewhere, Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers hailed the Lionel Messi-like character of Luis Suarez after the striker scored twice in the 3-0 defeat of Sunderland.

The Uruguay international took his Premier League tally to 15 for the season - the first Liverpool player to do so since Fernando Torres in 2009-10 - as he followed Raheem Sterling's clever lob which itself had elements of the Barcelona star.

Rodgers was not comparing the two South Americans in terms of talent but attitude, although the form Suarez is in at the moment he is quickly escalating himself into one of the best in the world.

"When you work with players like Luis Suarez, he is a Messi-type character in terms of he is angry when I give him a breather," said the Liverpool manager.

"At the start of the season I tried to rest him and he didn't want it.

"He is a player that to be at his top of his game has to play two or three times a week, one game is not enough.

"He needs to be playing and you see the response you get from him.

"His work has never dropped, he is a real team player, he trains every single day, is never in the treatment room and then he goes out and performs."

Alan Pardew is hoping striker Papiss Cisse will return to last season's form to fire Newcastle out of trouble.

The Senegal international gave Newcastle a second-minute lead over Everton with his sixth goal of the season as compatriot Demba Ba closed in on his move to Chelsea last night.

However, it was not enough to prevent his side from slipping to a ninth defeat in 11 Premier League games as the visitors hit back to snatch a 2-1 victory.

But as the club launched the search for Ba's replacement, Pardew challenged Cisse to rediscover the touch which brought him 13 goals in 14 appearances following his arrival on Tyneside 12 months ago.

Asked if the former Freiburg frontman was relishing the role of main man, he said: "I think so, and we are hoping he has the second half of the year he had last year, where he was absolutely terrific for us and scoring goals for fun.

"That's where we need to get him."