Belfast Telegraph

Warnock expects response

QPR manager Neil Warnock has been pleased by his team's response to the 6-0 drubbing at Fulham and expects Blackburn to feel the backlash on Saturday.

Having performed well since their promotion, QPR looked a shell of their normal self at Craven Cottage as Andrew Johnson's hat-trick saw Fulham romp to their first Barclays Premier League victory of the season. Warnock was understandably disappointed by the result at their local rivals, but expects a response against struggling Rovers.

"(The players' reaction) has been good," he said. "You are bound to be disappointed with a drubbing but it is one of those things. It just really shows that we need to keep the back lads together. We need all hands on deck really so it is important that the lads (get a result)."

He added: "Hopefully (Matthew) Connolly will be available again at the weekend, but that will be touch and go I would imagine. To lose him and others such as [Armand] Traore was a blow to us.

"I felt the QPR fans at Fulham last time out were absolutely fantastic. They know how quickly we have got where we have got now and I think it is great for a manager to get that support.

"It would have been easy to slaughter me and the players in a local derby. It was almost like they thought 'ok, we've lost but let's look forward to the next game', which I thought was a great attitude."

While QPR fans may have rallied behind Warnock, his weekend counterpart Steve Kean does not enjoy quite the same luxury. The Rovers boss has come under increasing criticism from a large section of fans, who want the former Fulham assistant manager to leave the club.

Warnock has sympathy for Kean's predicament but believes such pressure is part of being a manager in the spotlight.

"I think you've got so many complex situations as a manager, you don't really worry about anybody else," he said. "You've got enough worries with yourselves in the Premier League as every week is tough and that is what you have to deal with.

"When one manager comes under pressure it is usually because of the media, the fans and everything else. It sells papers, doesn't it? It is Steve one minute and I think last year, within three or four weeks, I remember there were three different managers one after the other, which I suppose keeps you lads in the job."

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