Despite His White Boots

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

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Match Reports

Saved up from my little jaunt up West. I have to say it was pretty sweet just being 5 stops on the tube from LR.

QPR 1 Swansea 0

Writing this a few days after the game, there wasn't really a lot in it ; 0-0 would have been a fair representation but Michele Leigertwood headed in from Jordi Lopez' free kick ftw. For once the ragged Loftus Road pitch probably inhibited the visitors more than the home team, and Rangers held on for a morale-boosting 3 points, a good effort considering the injury list at the time. Adel Tarrabt made a very lively debut on loan from Tottenham and Hogan Ephraim added impetus to the centre of the midfield where he looked surprisingly comfortable.

QPR 2 Bristol City 1

Rangers kept their "faint playoff hopes" alive by winning an entertaining game. Paolo Sousa kept faith with the side and the formation that beat Swansea in the week, but was able to name a very strong bench with Cook, Routledge, Helguson and Vine all substitutes. Rangers started brightly but City came into the game with Adebola a defenders' nightmare as usual, and had two excellent chances, Sproule and Maynard both firing over from less than 10 yards. At the other end, City keeper Basso read Samuel di Carmine's curling shot, and the referee spiced matters up by booking Adel Tarrabt for a dive in the City box.

Wayne Routledge came on at half-time, but City pressed quite strongly until Heidar Helguson also joined the fray to make a 4-4-2 after Matt Connolly limped off. The impressive Jordi Lopez (or is it Gomez ? No, Lopez definitely) curled a free kick to force Basso into a low save, and then five minutes later flighted a beauty into the top corner from the same spot. Helguson skimmed a shot just wide as Rangers looked likely to increase their advantage on the break, but after some careless play in the left-back area, Sproule was allowed to cross for McIndoe to volley in at the far post.

During the Swansea game, you looked at Tarrabt and you would be surprised that he hadn't seen any action for Spurs. Then today, you could suddenly see why - City doubled up on him quite often but he still wanted to try a trick every time instead of playing it simply to someone in space. Nonetheless, there's a lot of ability there, and luckily when Damien Delaney broke down the left and sent over a great low cross, there was no option for Tarrabt to try a backheel or a double stepover, and instead he lifted the ball over Basso for the winner. Routledge could have eased the nerves with an acrobatic volley but even so the game was seen off without too many alarms.

Special credit to Michele Leigertwood today who did really well after having to play the last half hour at centre half. While we have had quite a few injuries lately, we have been lucky that six defenders have been enough up to this point of the season. Kaspars Gorkss also starred and he looks pretty much like the main man at the back now. To be honest we still need a miracle to make the play-offs but at least these two wins have lifted the mood, the players looked a lot more confident and the crowd were quite up for it as well, so it was a good day all round.


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