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Sandro pressing claims for QPR recall

Published 22/09/2016

Queens Park Rangers' manager Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink is happy with his side's progress since the 6-0 defeat to Newcastle
Queens Park Rangers' manager Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink is happy with his side's progress since the 6-0 defeat to Newcastle

QPR manager Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink has admitted that Sandro is pushing for a start in Saturday's Sky Bet Championship game against Birmingham.

The Brazilian scored in the Hoops' 2-1 defeat to Sunderland in the EFL Cup on Wednesday, his third goal of the season, but he is yet to play in the Championship.

Sandro saw his move to Sporting Lisbon fall through in August, after he failed a medical, but Hasselbaink has been impressed with his commitment to the London club.

He said: "Sandro has got quality, we all know that.

"I have said after the window to Sandro that he will be judged and he will be treated like (the others). He wanted to go but he is still here.

"He has conducted himself really well in training and he is pushing himself forward for a starting position.

"He played ever so well (against Sunderland), he was a leader, he was one of a number of players who had the right voice but also at the end he ran a little bit out of steam because he does not have enough games under his belt.

"You can see how much work he has done in the first half and his intensity, how high that was. Second half that dropped a little bit but still he played well and I was very happy with his performance.

"I asked him to give me a very difficult selection for Saturday and that is what he has done."

QPR have lost their past three games in all competitions, including a 6-0 defeat at home to Newcastle which saw the side booed off the pitch by fans, but Hasselbaink believes the problems at the club have been exaggerated.

He said: "Let's not forget we are four points off the play-offs. Let's keep things in perspective.

"We are changing a lot, the budget has gone down drastically.

"We have brought in seven young players, the only older one is Joel Lynch because we needed an experienced centre half.

"Let's keep things in perspective, there is lots of things going round of panic.

"Do I want to lose 6-0? No. It is not in my nature and we should not have lost 6-0. We are still improving and we have got to keep working."

Sunderland manager David Moyes announced after the EFL Cup game that the club would be making a statement with regards to Patrick van Aanholt.

The 26-year-old left-back played the full game at Loftus Road after being pulled out of their Premier League game against Tottenham at the weekend due to medical advice.

Moyes said: "The club will say something more about it in the next day or so but all I will say is that the decision was made in the best interests of him and we will try and make sure things are a bit clearer in the next few days."

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