Gareth Ainsworth insisted Wycombe will stay up despite seeing his side slip to the bottom of the Sky Bet Championship table following a 1-1 draw with QPR.
Anis Mehmeti’s first senior goal two minutes from time earned a point for the hosts at Adams Park after Rangers had taken a 29th-minute lead through Jason McCarthy’s second own goal of the season.
Sheffield Wednesday’s victory over Coventry meant a point was not enough for Wycombe to avoid slipping to the foot of the table but despite their winless run now standing at 10 matches, a bullish Ainsworth believes his side will remain a Championship outfit beyond this season.
“We are going to stay in this league,” he said. “There’s going to be five or six teams all smashing it up at the bottom of the league.
“We’ve got to finish above three teams and that’s what we’re going to do.
“I thought we created enough to win the game and just couldn’t stick one in. We actually stuck one in for them, which was disappointing.
“But we’re not on the end of a 4-0 or a 5-0 as we were earlier in the season. Now we’re hugely competitive and I felt we could have nicked it at the end.
“Anis (Mehmeti) will definitely be in line for international caps in the future (he has represented Albania Under-19s) and it’s been great to welcome him to Wycombe. To see him get his first goal today was fantastic.”
Ainsworth also criticised the decision not to award his side a penalty for handball early in the second half, which was met by a furious reaction from his players on the field.
He explained: “Sometimes you think ‘is it just the players claiming for anything?’ But the reactions were totally justified. The ball is just armed away from the goal line.
“I think it’s a definite penalty for us. It’s a goal that’s been stopped on the line and that would make it 1-1 with quite a while to go.
“We were definitely the more aggressive team in the second half and we could have gone on to win.”
QPR boss Mark Warburton pinpointed a lack of quality going forward as a key factor behind failing to end their own winless run, which now stands at seven matches.
Rob Dickie came close before the opening goal and Yoann Barbet’s header was well saved in the second half as the visitors looked to stretch their advantage before being hit by a late sucker punch.
“You know what type of game you’re going to get (at Wycombe),” Warburton said.
“They’re very good at what they do, they’re very direct, they get the ball forward and they’re very hard to beat here.
“We got the goal and we got our noses in front. We dealt with the onslaught fairly well and to give away a goal of that nature is more than frustrating.
“We showed a lack of quality in that final third and we’ve got to be better.
“I just wanted the players to keep the football. They can’t score if we’ve got the ball. We had enough of the ball in the second half and we were in good areas. You hope for a scrappy 1-0 but that late goal really hurts us.”
The R’s remain 19th, four points clear of the bottom three, while Wycombe are four points from safety going into the hectic festive programme.
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