QPR boss defends out-of-form Willock

QPR boss Neil Critchley has leapt to the defence of Chris Willock and believes the forward is close to recapturing his outstanding early-season form.

Willock scored six goals before Christmas but suffered another hamstring injury in October and has struggled since returning to the side. He was withdrawn again by Critchley in the 2-2 draw at Reading.

But Critchley insists patience is needed with the 24-year-old and that Willock is committed to the club.

“I think it’s understandable why Chris is out of form at the moment,” Critchley said.

“He had no pre-season, comes back, does really well, then gets injured again.

“Then when he comes back he is just getting going again and then the World Cup comes, so it’s been real stop-start for him. It’s about recapturing that rhythm and consistency.

“We had a good chat in the week and it’s about him playing himself back into form and giving everything he’s got and working hard.

“There’s no doubting his ability. It will come, it’s just about being patient with him.

“He really cares, he thinks a lot about his game, he loves playing for this football club, loves being here and is probably over-thinking things at the moment.

“We just need to simplify things for him at the moment. He’s got to know we think a lot of him.

“Patience is very hard in football because people are always thinking Chrissy Willock is going to be the match-decider. but the moment that is not happening for him.

“Chris is a conscientious player about his game and at the moment he is very frustrated because he wants to get back to his best.

“It’s my job as a coach to help him find that.”