Harry Redknapp defends Rio Ferdinand amid criticism

Harry Redknapp, manager of QPR looks on during the Barclays Premier League match between Queens Park Rangers and Stoke City at Loftus Road on September 20, 2014
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Queens Park Rangers boss Harry Redknapp insists that his side's problems aren't all down to the form of defender Rio Ferdinand.

Queens Park Rangers boss Harry Redknapp has defended Rio Ferdinand following the club's poor start to the season.

The 35-year-old joined the club in the summer on a free transfer from Manchester United, but has struggled to find his feet at Loftus Road, becoming part of a defence that has conceded 18 goals in eight matches.

However, Redknapp is adamant that his side's problems are not all down to their defenders, and feels that Ferdinand has been used as a scapegoat.

He told reporters: "It has not been as easy for him obviously but it's funny how everybody is looking for a scapegoat and it's all Rio's fault.

"Obviously it's been different for him but when we didn't play well it wasn't because of Rio. When we went to Tottenham and got beat by four I thought Rio and [Steven] Caulker were our two best players, the only two who came out with any real credit.

"Last week, when he wasn't in the team he was part of the team even though he didn't start, and that's important - you need people like that round the football club."

QPR face Aston Villa in their Premier League clash later today.

Rio Ferdinand of QPR salutes the crowd at the end of the Barclays Premier League match between Manchester United and Queens Park Rangers at Old Trafford on September 14, 2014
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