MARK HUGHES has spoken of his pride after watching his QPR team more than match Chelsea at Loftus Road this afternoon.
A pulsating West London derby finished goalless in W12, and Rangers players left the pitch with a sense of disappointment that they only had a point to show for their efforts.
“In terms of controlling the game I thought we were able to do that, which augurs well for the future,” Hughes told www.qpr.co.uk shortly after the final whistle.
“We equipped ourselves really well and it just shows the longer we are together as a group and the longer we play as a group, the better we will become.”
Rangers went into the match looking to avenge their last league performance on home soil which resulted in a 5-0 opening-day defeat to Swansea, and Hughes added: “In our last outing here in the Premier League we didn’t do so well, but in terms of an improved performance that was as good as we could have expected today.”
QPR carved out a number of great opportunities, with Ji-Sung Park, Bobby Zamora and Djibril Cisse all going close.
“We were always looking to try and win the game, and always looking to try and create things,” Hughes said. “We had a couple of good chances. Ji probably had more time than he realised and could have brought the ball down instead of heading it, and Bobby rounded the keeper, and Djib had a good opportunity as well.”
Hughes was delighted with the performance of his squad as a whole but singled out his central defensive partnership for special praise.
“I thought Anton (Ferdinand) and Ryan Nelsen were excellent today,” he added. “Ryan has travelled half-way round the world in the week and I thought he produced an outstanding performance for us.
“All in all, as a performance, it was an improvement on what we produced against Manchester City and that’s what we were looking for.
“Now we’re looking for more good performances which, in the end, will almost certainly bring us positive results.
“Chelsea knew they had to perform today in order to stay in the game and I would imagine they are pleased with the point they gained.
“It’s proof that we are going in the right direction. It’s only a matter of time before we get the win on board and then we can really start to build our season.”