Steve McClaren facing tough team selection after changes make impact

QPR boss Steve McClaren revealed Conor Washington and Pawel Wszolek are in contention to keep their places after impressing in the 2-0 win over Peterborough in the Carabao Cup.

Goals in the first six minutes, scored by Luke Freeman and Wszolek, gave Rangers a place in the second round and their first win under McClaren.

Striker Washington, recalled to play against his former club, was involved in the build-up to both goals.

Freeman netted after Washington’s cross was weakly parried by keeper Aaron Chapman.

And Washington then threaded a pass through to Wszolek, who finished coolly.

“We made some changes but only to give a chance to players who deserved it,” said McClaren.

“We brought Conor in because we felt we needed energy and pace running in beyond. He certainly did that.

“He got us up the field instead of being pressed. He provided us with an outlet and that gave us a good platform from the front.

“We dominated the first half and that’s the kind of football that we want to bring here; controlling the game, switching the play, good attacking football, plenty of crosses into the box.”

Wszolek was also among the players brought in by McClaren, who lost both his first Sky Bet Championship matches as R’s boss.

The Polish winger’s energetic display means he is now very much in contention for Saturday’s game at West Brom.

“He deserved his opportunity because we needed consistency and energy in wide areas and he gave us that,” McClaren said.

“I’ve always liked Pavel. I remember when they first signed him here, I thought he was very good.

“I had no hesitation in picking him tonight and he showed his experience. It’s a difficult team now to pick on Saturday.”

Peterborough boss Steve Evans admitted the League One side paid the price for their sloppy early defending.

“It doesn’t give you a chance. It’s very difficult to stop the momentum that QPR get from two quick goals,” said Evans.

“I think we were by far the better side in the second half. We made some chances but didn’t take them.

“They got two chances and took them. We made two or three chances in the second half and took none of them.

“I was pleased with the second half but we didn’t turn up for the first half and that was disappointing.

“They scored twice in the space of four minutes. Steve McClaren will be thinking it was very easy in the first half.

“We’ll feel the pain because we hate losing and the group is better than we showed in that first period. The second period was more like us.

“We’ll learn from it. We’ve got some good players but you cannot go anywhere and concede two early goals like that.”

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Football Paradise Staff Reporter

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