Premier League: Red-hot Sakho sinks shoddy QPR

Frank Dalleres
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Diafra Sakho has scored on all five of his West Ham starts since his £3.5m switch from French second division side Metz in August

UNDER-PRESSURE QPR manager Harry Redknapp blamed a lack of fitness rather than a shortage of determination for his toothless team’s woeful form after they suffered a fifth Premier League defeat yesterday.

A Nedum Onuoha own goal and Diafra Sakho’s fifth strike in as many games underlined West Ham’s superiority, continued their fine start to the campaign and lifted them to seventh in the table. In contrast QPR looked rudderless, might have lost by a greater margin and look unlikely to clamber off the bottom of the division soon – though Redknapp insists the solution is simple.

“It wasn’t great, that’s for sure. I’ve seen some diabolical performances of late as well but we won’t go into that,” he said.

“We need to get them fitter. I’ve put a lot of faith in Sandro. Unfortunately he’s had an injury and we need to get him fit. When he’s fit he’s a fantastic player – I had him at Tottenham, he’s an excellent player – but at the moment he’s short of fitness.

“There’s a lot of teams down there. One win changes everything. What are you supposed to do? You have to keep going. We’re not going to give up are we? It’s early days.”

Hammers boss Sam Allardyce admits that striker Sakho, who has scored in all of his starts since moving from Metz for just £3.5m in August, has adapted far better than the club had expected. He said: “I’d have seen Sakho as being a player, coming from the French second division, playing maybe 10 to 15 games for us and finding out about the Premier League, but he is so desperate to do well and he seems to have the knack – and that’s the hardest knack of all – of turning up in the right place at the right time.”

West Ham went ahead in the fifth minute when Onuoha turned Stewart Downing’s corner into his own net under pressure from Sakho

The Senegal forward added the second goal just before the hour mark when he nodded into an unguarded net from centre-back James Tomkins’ hopeful hooked centre.