Millwall boss rejects 'near miss' plaudits, while QPR gaffer savours burst of form
Gary Rowett admitted his side had wasted a golden opportunity to take the play-off charge to the last game of the season – and refused to take consolation from going so close.
The Lions have prided themselves on being a tough nut to crack this season and punched above their weight. But their defending was shocking at QPR as they capitulated 4-3 – a result which does not fully reflect the number of chances created by the home side.
"I could easily stand here and say that we've come so far, done so well and are proud of what we've achieved. But that's not me,” said the Millwall boss. “I don't want us to play the 'little old Millwall' card. We needed to capitalise on the opportunity.
"I'm disappointed. I think when the pressure came on, we've not managed to step up and handle it very well. We didn't start well and I just felt that defensively we were very vulnerable. We didn't do our jobs in the right areas around the box."
QPR have struggled since the restart and were abject in their previous home game – a 3-0 loss to Sheffield Wednesday. So boss Mark Warburton had every reason to feel great satisfaction at such an unexpectedly thrilling performance
"I say this full of respect for Millwall, who are a very good team, but we could have scored eight, nine or 10 goals there,” Warburton said. “We've missed a couple of great chances, their keeper's produced a couple of world-class saves and we've hit the bar.
"We looked really dangerous going forward. We knew they had to throw bodies forward and we could transition on them really quickly. We had to get bodies forward today. You can't keep it all very nice without hurting them.
“We hurt them. We got in behind them and had bodies in the box. We looked very good for long periods of the game."