Manager reflects on capital reverse

by Kate Smith

Boss O’Neill on QPR comeback.

Sunderland manager Martin O’Neill watched his side slip to a 3-1 defeat against Queens Park Rangers, despite taking an early lead through Steven Fletcher's 11th goal of the season.

Loic Remy made the most of a huge slice of luck to grab an equaliser for Harry Redknapp’s side, after the ball deflected into his path for him to tuck away with ease. 

When times are tough you’re never in control until you see it on the scoreboard.

- Martin O'Neill

Clearly boosted by the visitors’ misfortune, the hosts didn’t look back. A wonder-goal from Andros Townsend and a late Jermaine Jenas strike in the second half secured all three points for the West London side.

Following the game at Loftus Road, O’Neill told safc.com: “It was always going to be a difficult game for us.

“QPR were buoyed by their win over Southampton last week and we had to counteract that and deal with the swell of euphoria from the crowd, which I thought we did well.

 “We put ourselves in front and it’s a wonder-goal from them to take the game to 2-1.”

Sunderland looked the better of the two teams following the break, however, they were unable to carve out ant clear-cut chances to get back into the game.

“We have to give QPR credit, but having said that it’s extremely disappointing to lose the game.”

“From the second half onwards we looked as though we were in control of the game and that’s the frustrating aspect of it,” O’Neill continued.

“When times are tough you’re never in control until you see it on the scoreboard.

“I thought QPR caused us problems and it was difficult for us. Craig Gardner stuck to the task admirably, as a midfielder playing at full-back - and the same at the other side of the field.”

Now Sunderland have back-to-back home games to prepare for, with the first being against fellow mid table side Norwich City next Sunday, followed by title chasing Manchester United.

“It’s a tough old set of fixtures for us between now and the end of the season,” the manager added.

“We need to get some points on the board.

“The players in the dressing room are disappointed, but we’re looking to respond as we have done before.

“It’s a big game next week.”