The Queen's Park Rangers midfielder Esteban Granero has said that commitment to the club's cause from their new acquisitions, which was called into question by the defender Clint Hill, is no longer in doubt following their remarkable victory over Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday.
Granero is one of several players who have found themselves in and out of favour under Harry Redknapp, starting just three of the new manager's seven games prior to Wednesday, but he was one of the most impressive performers against Chelsea. Hill's comments before the defeat against Liverpool on Sunday had been aimed more specifically at Jose Bosingwa, who had refused to sit on the bench against Fulham.
Although Granero, who joined from Real Madrid in August, at first claimed the notion that some of the previous manager Mark Hughes' summer arrivals were not performing had come from "outside the club", he added that Wednesday's performance was proof that the likes of himself, Julio Cesar, Fabio da Silva and Stéphane Mbia were committed to the cause.
Granero said: "[Against Chelsea] everyone saw that the players who arrived in the summer gave everything, that they cared just as much as any players on the pitch. We were happy for the chance to show our commitment and we did that."
QPR are expected to sign free agent Tal Ben Haim on a deal to the end of the season. He has been training with the club since the start of December. Having been turned down by Joe Cole, Redknapp would also like the Tottenham midfielder Tom Huddlestone on loan, but there is no interest at Spurs in letting him go unless it is on a permanent deal.
QPR are at home to West Bromwich Albion in the FA Cup third round tomorrow. Shaun Wright-Phillips, who scored the winner against Chelsea, said his side had set a template for approaching the final 17 games of the season. "If Chelsea struggled to break us down, with the way we played against them, a lot of teams will," he said. "We've never stopped believing we could escape since we got in this situation. We still believe it strongly and it was a great relief to get that result at Stamford Bridge. Away from home we haven't been the best and we've dropped a lot of points, so this is something we have to consolidate now."
- More about:
- Chelsea F.c.
- Harry Redknapp
- Jose Bosingwa
- Liverpool FC
- Mark Hughes
- Premier League
- Real Madrid