Despite His White Boots

Football, football, football and, if the mood takes me, more football.

Sunday, April 06, 2008

QPR 2 Preston 2

Rangers pulled out a ludicrous runner-runner chop yesterday after being comfortably second best for the entire game. With Vine, Buzsaky and Delaney all missing, and three or four others playing well short of par, there would have been no complaints if Preston had gone away 2-0 winners. However, Gareth Ainsworth inspired an unlikely comeback in injury time to snatch a point.

Lee Camp had already saved well from Mellor and the excellent Whaley before Rangers forced their first effort on goal, Dexter Blackstock nicking the ball off the visiting defence and having his fierce shot pushed away by Lonergan. Preston went straight upfield, won a corner that could surely have been avoided, and from the set-piece Mawene's header fell to Mellor who blasted a volley past the helpless Camp. Michael Mancienne, Rangers' best outfield player on the day, fired wide from 25 yards just before the break, but that was it for the home side in an off-colour first half.

Matters soon worsened when Whaley and Sedgwick doubled up on the isolated Mancienne and Sedgwick's cross was bundled in by a combination of Priskin and defender Connolly. Camp had to pull out a fine save from Priskin's header and with a better cutting edge the visitors would have been out of sight. Luigi de Canio shuffled his pack as best he could, but with 5 minutes left large swathes of the home support were heading for the exits.

Suddenly though Ainsworth, who had been completely ineffective up to that point, stuck a leg out onto a low cross and somehow lobbed the ball over Lonergan for what looked like a consolation. Rangers woke up and threw caution to the wind, Camp coming forward for a corner, and remarkably Ainsworth found room to swing over a good cross which Blackstock converted after nipping in front of his marker.

Naturally we celebrated this as though we had just been promoted. Well you do, don't you. All in all, Preston were as good as anyone I've seen at Loftus Road this season, and confirmed my current thinking that you'd much rather play one of the "table-topping" sides right now than the form teams. Unfortunately for us it's a trip to Hull next week, the form team of them all. But it's a good test, and that's what the rest of the season is all about, testing ourselves and trying to gel all the elements together into a team to challenge next season.


Post a Comment

<< Home