x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 26 July 2017

Redknapp unhappy as 'three worst goals' lost to Fulham damage QPR survival hopes

The Queens Park Rangers coach criticised his side's 'sloppy' start as poor defending left them 3-0 down within 40 minutes at Loftus Road before battling back to 3-2.

Dimitar Berbatov scores from the penalty spot for Fulham against Queens Park Rangers.
Dimitar Berbatov scores from the penalty spot for Fulham against Queens Park Rangers.

Fulham 3 QPR 2
Fulham: Berbatov 8' (p), 22'; Hill 41 (og)
QPR: Taarabt 45', Remy 51

Harry Redknapp was left to rue QPR's "sloppy" start against west London rivals Fulham after a 3-2 defeat delivered a heavy blow to the Hoops' survival hopes.

Dimitar Berbatov scored from the spot after just eight minutes when Christopher Samba, signed during the January transfer window, fouled Ashkan Dejagah to concede an early penalty. Samba was at fault again for the second, after being caught in possession to allow the Bulgarian striker to add his second halfway through the first half.

And an own goal from Samba's central defensive partner Clint Hill saw QPR fall 3-0 down before Adel Taarabt pulled a goal back before the interval.

After the break Rangers were much improved and Loic Remy thundered home a second for the visitors, but only after he had seen a tame penalty saved by Mark Schwarzer.

Redknapp felt the game was there for the taking, especially after Fulham midfielder Steven Sidwell was sent off for a challenge on Armand Traore, but the former Tottenham boss was left bemoaning the poor opening to the match.

"We started sloppy," Redknapp said after the match.

"We gave an early goal away and suddenly you're on the back foot, you can't give goals away like that and win football matches.

"They were the worst three goals you could ever wish to see given away.

"They didn't have to work for their goals, the penalty we got caught in possession, then we lost the ball and then with the own goal - you couldn't have seen three worse goals.

"We did well to come back from there and in the second half we deserved to get something out of the game - we battered them second half. At 3-2 I could see only one winner."

The result moves Fulham nine points clear of the relegation zone, with Berbatov's brace taking his tally to 13 goals for the season.

But while Martin Jol, the Fulham manager, was pleased with the side's early performances, he criticised a collective lapse in concentration from his players which threatened to allow QPR back into the game.

"We lifted their spirit and that was my worry," said Jol.

"We played ever so well to be 3-0 up in a derby game. I wouldn't say we relaxed but it was nice and then we gave them the ball and I still can't understand why.

"There was maybe a lack of concentration and at half-time we realised that if they scored another one it would be difficult for us and that is exactly what happened.

"We started making mistakes in possession but that is not what you should do. If it was 3-0 at half-time I would have been convinced we would have scored a fourth and a fifth but we made it difficult for ourselves."

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