QPR boss defends ‘outstanding’ keeper after mistake against City
- Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd
Queens Park Rangers boss Mark Warburton defended Seny Dieng after the goalkeeper’s mistake gave Norwich City the advantage during the leaders’ 3-1 win.
The Senegal international was returning from a one-game ban and playing with a mask to protect a broken nose. He let Xavi Quintilla’s swerving 25-yard shot slip through his arms and couldn’t prevent the ball crossing his line in the 32nd minute.
“He’s human,” said the QPR boss. “Messi makes mistakes, Ronaldo makes mistakes, the very best players in the world make mistakes.
“Seny’s had an outstanding season, he’s just human, as simple as that.”
The already promoted Canaries eventually won 3-1 to remain five points clear at the top but had to work hard for the win in London, having seven shots on target and 58 per cent of possession, but with Rangers also managing five shots on target.
“They’re going to be champions of the league, I think, so we know they’re a very good side,” added Warburton.
“Disappointed that we showed too much respect in the first half and didn’t play to our strengths but then pleased with the reaction of the second half, just disappointed with the way we didn’t manage the game for the last 10 or 15 minutes.”
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Tim Krul saved a Lyndon Dykes penalty in the 55th minute and Max Aarons swiftly capitalised, with the right-back turning in a Kenny McLean cross to make it 2-0 within a few minutes.
The hosts enjoyed a spell of pressure after bringing on the experience of winger Albert Adomah and striker Charlie Austin in the 66th minute and the duo were involved as Dykes pulled a goal back five minutes later – only for McLean to tee up Emi Buendia as City sealed the victory in the 82nd minute.
“They deserved the lead,” Warburton continued. “It was a soft goal but in the first half they were dominating possession and our area.
“Then second half, yes, we could have gone 1-1 with a penalty but then we found ourselves two down and in truth we could have been three down with Pukki missing that big chance.
“Then we get the goal and it’s 2-1 and then we have four or five really good chances to go to 2-2, so that’s the disappointing bit.
“But 2-1, with 10 minutes to go, you’ve got to manage the game better.”