QPR boss Harry Redknapp has admitted trying to “shut up shop” at half-time during his side’s 3-0 defeat to Liverpool on Sunday.
The Reds scored all three of their goals in the first half but saw their chances limited by the Rs in the second period after Redknapp introduced Shaun Derry to the midfield in place of striker Djibril Cisse.
And the Englishman has conceded that he simply hoped to prevent the scoreline becoming embarrassing for the west London side.
“At half-time, you are sitting watching the game – did you think we were going to win 4-3? No, neither did I. You have to be realistic in football,” he told reporters.
“Do you want to get beaten 8-0? Or do you want to keep a little bit of pride intact? Damage limitation is what it’s called, and it’s not a nice situation to be in, but that’s what I had to do.
“I had to change how we played and try to shut up shop. Maybe I should have done that from the start. Maybe I’ve come in thinking we need a win, and we played with an open team.
“But at 3-0 you’re thinking hang on, this could be seven or eight if we’re not careful, just like Chelsea the other day. They could’ve got 10 or 11 against Aston Villa. I didn’t want that happening today but I could see it coming when they were three up.”
The former Tottenham boss went on to lament the quality gap between his side and the expensively assembled visitors.
“What can you do? Norwich got smashed [by them] earlier in the year, how many did they let in? Five-whatever,” he continued.
“It can happen, can’t it. They’ve got better quality players, it can happen on the wrong day. There’s a difference in quality wherever you go in football.
“Chelsea, Man United, Man City, Tottenham, they’re different quality. And today, Liverpool I’m afraid had too many good players, we couldn’t get near them.
“They’ve got Joe Allen – £20 million; Henderson – £20m, Steven Gerrard worth £50m, or whatever he’s been worth. Have a look at what they’ve got.
“You’ve got to try to match that with a team that’s… It’s different levels, people don’t seem to understand. You look at the quality from back to front. They’re just a team of outstanding players who should be pushing to be in the top four.”
Redknapp also hailed the performance of Liverpool forward Luis Suarez, who took his Premier League goal tally for the season to 13 by netting twice.
“I think I’ve seen [Suarez] do that to everyone he’s played against this year,” he added.
“It’s not something he’s just suddenly done today, is it? It’s what he is. He’s the most fantastic striker. He’s one of the best, in the half a dozen in the world, without a doubt.
“My two centre-halves gave everything. They’re both 35 and they gave everything they’ve got. Clint Hill, you couldn’t ask for more.”