Mark Warburton refused to get carried away after QPR moved to third in the Championship table by beating Derby 2-1 at Pride Park thanks to Andre Gray’s magnificent injury-time winner.
Gray hooked home after Ilias Chair had nodded Chris Willock’s cross onto the post to clinch a come-from-behind victory after a poor first-half display saw Derby lead 1-0 at the break.
“I thought first half we were tentative, lacking in pace and purpose to our play and gave away a soft goal,” Rangers boss Warburton said.
“Although they never really threatened after that goal, we lacked a bit of quality to deserve an equaliser if I am honest.
“We needed to be quicker, which is what we do when we are playing well.
“In the second half we played far more forward and were positive in decision-making. We looked a good team in the second half and I think we deserved to win the game.”
Willock’s smart finish from a Charlie Austin cross levelled midway through the second half and from that point Rangers looked the only side who were going to win the game as they dominated the final 30 minutes.
But they were frustrated by some poor finishing, with Chair somehow heading over with the goal at his mercy, before Gray, who was told by the QPR medical staff he really needed another week out following a knee injury, pounced in the 90th minute.
“We got the equaliser at the right time. Charlie put in a really good shift for us and to have somebody of Andre Gray’s quality come off the bench and do that was very pleasing,” Warburton said.
“I know Andre inside out and he was ringing me at home and saying ‘I am ready to play’ all weekend.
“But we have to look after the players. He is a loan player and we have a responsibility to him and his club.
“He was ready for 15 or 20 minutes and it was a fantastic finish. He has that in his locker. He will frustrate you and sometimes that will go in row X, but sometimes it’ll go in the top corner like tonight.
“He has that quality and we needed that to win this game. Derby have had a good run, beaten Bournemouth, drawn with Fulham, and they play with a unity and a cause.”