Despite His White Boots

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

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

QPR 1 Blackpool 1

This was a definite improvement on Saturday, and in the end Rangers could count themselves unlucky not to win. The home team passed the ball well for 15 minutes, and created a couple of half-chances, when Blackpool suddenly scored out of nowhere. A long punt forward fell to Gary Taylor-Fletcher and he had time to flick the ball up and send a fine volley swerving into the top corner. This knocked Rangers' confidence and they only threatened close to half-time when Dexter Blackstock could have done better from two wicked Lee Cook crosses.

Iain Dowie wasted no time in replacing Latin lightweights Parejo and Ledesma with the more forthright presences of Leigertwood and Agyemang, and Rangers were soon on the front foot. Cook's low drive was saved well by Rachubka, and after a string of corners delivered into the heart of the 6-yard box by Rowlands and Cook, Dexter Blackstock headed one in, only to be denied by a very late flag after the referee had clearly given the goal.

While Rangers dominated possession, the final ball just wouldn't quite come and it seemed like a set piece would be their best best. So it proved, in a way, as third substitute Akos Buzsaky sent a sublime free-kick onto the crossbar, with Blackstock diving to head the rebound in. The anticipated late assault proceeded in fits and starts as Rangers were too anxious to win possession back and gave away a number of momentum-stalling free kicks. The closest they came was when Leigertwood's header was deflected over by a defender who knew very little about it. Four injury time corners tested the visiting defence to the limit, but they clung on for the point.

The last two home games have been a bit of a reality check for Rangers, and while they could have timed this a bit better than just after I backed them for everything, it might not do any harm in the long run. Parejo and Ledesma are finding it more difficult against physical opponents, and I have to say I really don't like Parejo playing in the 2 of a 4-2-3-1 because he has a tendency to play over-ambitious passes, which isn't so bad in the last third, but can cause a lot of problems on half-way. Still, there's plenty of time to work with it, and with Wolves, Birmingham and Reading looking a clear cut above the rest of the division, we can settle in and try to work towards a play-off spot IMO.


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