A dejected Harry Redknapp claimed to have endured the toughest result of his career after watching Queens Park Rangers concede an injury-time equaliser to draw 1-1 with Wigan Athletic when his team looked set for victory with 10 men.
QPR, a man down after Bobby Zamora's 21st-minute sending-off, could sense a route away from relegation when Loïc Rémy gave them the lead with a stunning right-foot shot on 85 minutes but, four minutes into stoppage time, Shaun Maloney curled a free-kick he had won past Júlio César and into the top corner.
The result leaves QPR, who are without a win in three games, in 19th, seven points from safety with only six Premier League fixtures to play.
"[This is the toughest result] in my football career, never mind the season," Redknapp said. "We didn't deserve that, we deserved to win. We played with 10 men for nearly the whole game. It was a fantastic performance from every player and for them to lose is criminal. What have they [Wigan] done? They've kept the ball, passed it in front of us, but how many saves has our keeper had to make? Hardly any. My players are very low, as am I.
"If we had come off with three points with 10 men it would have given us a massive boost, a massive lift, and you'd have thought we could still win four games. But now it is going to be very hard [to stay up]."
Redknapp did not disagree with the decision of the referee, Phil Dowd, to send off Zamora after the striker planted studs into Jordi Gómez's head having mistimed an attempt to stop the Spaniard collecting Maloney's throw-in. "It was a rash challenge," said the manager, with his counterpart, Roberto Martínez, describing the incident as "shocking" and claiming Gómez was lucky not to have been struck in the eye.
This draw leaves Wigan in the relegation zone ahead of their meeting with Millwall in Saturday's FA Cup semi-final but they are behind Sunderland in 17th only on goal difference and with a game in hand on Paolo Di Canio's side.
Martínez agreed that his side had been fortunate to leave with a point. "Overall I'm very disappointed with our performance.; to have just two open chances against 10 men is not good enough," he said. "But to get a positive result when everything is against us makes me extremely proud."