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Tuesday, January 30, 2007

QPR Drop Into The Relegation Trio with a Loss at Barnsley

QPR, who are in the middle of a terrible run, lost again tonight. From QPR's Last 12 League Games: 10 Losses and 2 wins: Form QPR lost 0-2 at Barnsley with goals in the last minute of each half. As a result of this loss, Barnsley go above QPR. As other results also went against QPR, QPR are in some trouble. It might be noted that the transfer window closes at Midnight, Wednesday, so QPR have 24 more hours to buy or sell.

League Table After Tonight

17 Norwich 29 -11 34
18 Leicester 29 -9 33
19 Barnsley 30 -15 32
20 Hull 30 -11 31
21 Luton 30 -14 31
22 QPR 30 -12 30
23 Southend 30 -21 27
24 Leeds 29 -22 27

John Gregory's Post-Match Comments - QPR Official Site "We'll Battle On"
"John Gregory vowed that there is more to come from his men and predicts there will be a few more twists and turns yet.
After what he admitted was a disappoiting display, the gaffer was resolute in his admission that Rangers would continue to battle against the current lack of form.
"We had the majority of the play in the first half, they got their chance and took it whereas we didn't take the three or four that fell our way.
"It's a massive concern obviously, we've been down the bottom fighting relegation all season, but I'm sure there will be more twists and turns before this campaign finishes.
"You can't knock our spirit, if there's one thing these lads can do it's fight and I know they will come good.
"Tough times don't last, but tough guys do."
JG was concerned that the result would have been a lot different had the referee given a second half penalty.
"I saw it, all eleven players saw it and so did all of the fans. But when times are hard you don't get the breaks." QPR

John Gregory's men slipped into the relegation zone after a disappointing result against fellow strugglers Barnsley.
It was billed as a 'must win' game, but Rangers failed to take anything from Oakwell as the Tykes won this batle at the bottom.
The first half was quiet and careful from both sides, who were both clearly well aware of the dangers that one simple mistake could create.
And it was one lapse in concentration that allowed Marc Richards to put the Tykes ahead in first half injury time.
The second half failed to bring better news for Rangers as a penalty decision was waved away before Brian Howard sailed the ball over Royce from 20 yards out in the 90th minute
John Gregory called upon new signing Adam Bolder to take up a place in the middle of the park and up front, Paul Furlong joined Dexter Blackstock in the attack.

Zesh Rehman carved out the first of Rangers' attacks when he stormed down the right flank, sold a dummy to his marker and crossed for Blackstock to just head wide of the post.

Antony Kay then almost gifted Rangers the opener when his stray leg diverted Lomas' cross into the arms of Nick Colgan in the Barnsley goal.

New signing Adam Bolder was certainly vocal in the middle of the park and was full of orders and arm movements for his team mates.

With 15 minutes on the clock, Cook swung in a free kick from outside the box which narrowly evaded Damion Stewart at the far post as Rangers grew ever closer to breaking the deadlock.

The action then became as quiet as the Oakwell crowd where a strange 'reserve game' atmosphere was only ever broken up by the vocal travelling support, who though short in numbers, were in fine voice.

With three minutes of the half remaining, Jimmy Smith became the second Rangers man to have a certain goal denied thanks to an unassuming defender. Paul Reid deflected Smith's cracking strike over the bar, despite not knowing too much about it.

But the game took a turn for the worse when Barnsley pulled ahead.

Deep into injury time, Marc Richards stole through, completely unopposed and stuck home the ball past Royce to completely shock the visiting team. Seconds after, the referee blew for half time to signal the worst possible end of the half for Rangers.

Barnsley signalled their intentions in the second half by sitting ten men behind the ball quite literally, moving only to hit Rangers on the break. Even despite their drastic measures, the defending was still quite comical at times.

Rangers were still carving out space though. Blackstock forced Colgan to save at his near post before Furlong cannoned the ball over the bar from close range.

With 20 minutes of the second half played, John Gregory and the travelling support behind the goal were all on their feet when referee Boyeson waved away their appeals for a penalty. Rangers felt that their shouts of hand ball were strong, but the official refused to budge on the matter.

Gregory then introduced Ray Jones and Gareth Ainsworth at the expense of Furlong and Lomas in a bid to get a grip on the game.

Cook continued to ravage the Tykes defence with some formiddable twists and turns, but his finishing was wayward when he blazed the ball over the bar.

Barnsley then enjoyed a spell of pressure causing Rangers to live on the edge at times.
It finally paid off when Brian Howard lobbed Simon Royce in injury time once again after spotting the keeper off his line in the 90th minute. Despite the four minutes of stoppages, Rangers were out of time.
Barnsley: Colgan, Hassell, Reid, Togwell, Richards, Howard, Kay (K Reid 74), Eckersley, Nardiello, Devaney, McCann
Subs: Lucas, Coulson, Atkinson, Mattis
Scorers: Richards 45, Howard 90
Bookings: Togwell
QPR: Royce, Rehman (Nygaard 85), Bolder, Lomas (Ainsworth 74), Cook, Stewart, Timoska, Furlong (Jones 70), Blackstock, Smith, Mancienne
Subs: Cole, Kanyuka
Bookings: Timoska, Mancienne
Att: 9,890
Ref: C Boyeson QPR


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By Ross Heppenstall, PA Sport

Barnsley manager Simon Davey compared Brian Howard to Wayne Rooney after his spectacular strike sealed a priceless 2-0 Coca-Cola Championship win over relegation rivals QPR.

Tykes midfielder Howard capped an impressive display with a delightful chipped effort in the closing stages to add to Marc Richards' opener.

The goal was similar to Rooney's second strike in Manchester United's 2-1 FA Cup fourth-round victory against Portsmouth last weekend.

"It was Wayne Rooney-like," said Davey. "It was a cultured finish and he's won the game for us with an excellent goal, so you can't argue with that.

"We're very pleased to get the victory and we've said in the last couple of weeks it's the result that matters.

"We've now put together two wins and that's what we need at this stage of the season."

Richards regained his scoring touch when it mattered most as Barnsley secured a priceless victory that saw them leapfrog Rangers.

Goalless in his previous 15 appearances and under increased pressure following the arrival of Hungary forward Peter Rajczi, the striker responded in the best possible manner.

His close-range finish put the Tykes ahead on the stroke of half-time and Howard's last-minute strike from 20 yards sealed the points.

Davey added: "Pretty football doesn't get you results and if we need to grind out results - get everybody behind the ball and put a chance away when we get it - then that's what we'll do.

"Rangers were very physical and it was the same when we went down to Loftus Road.

"I don't think there's a player under 6ft 3in there and they put us under pressure at times.

"But we withheld the pressure and defended magnificently. I don't look at the table but if we keep picking up points then I'll be happy."

It was tough on John Gregory's side, who now reside in the relegation zone, as they created a succession of half-chances only to be thwarted by an excellent defensive display from Barnsley.

This was the Tykes' second successive win and the availability of Rajczi for Friday's trip to Cardiff will serve as another boost to their survival prospects.

The striker, who has been capped nine times and scored 23 goals last term in domestic competition, has agreed to a loan move from Ujpest Dozsa until the end of the season with a view to completing a permanent deal in the summer.

He was ineligible to face Rangers as he awaits international clearance and was forced to watch in frustration from Oakwell's main stand.

Davey added: "He should be available for Friday's game at Cardiff but he'll have to work hard to get into the side and rightly so."

Rangers, who handed a debut to Adam Bolder in the centre of midfield following his arrival from Derby, created the better chances for much of the game.

But, as John Gregory admitted, they badly lacked a killer touch.

"I thought we had dominated the first half and put a lot of pressure on them but we got punched on the nose when Richards scored," said the Rangers boss.

"We know that through this difficult period, it will turn. Tough times don't last but tough people do and this lost certainly just kept going and going.
"This lot have never given in and that's why the fans have stuck with us, home and away.
"What we might lack in quality, we certainly make up for in our effort and our enthusiasm.
"The results will turn because, once again, the boys gave everything." Sporting Life

BBC - Barnsley 2-0 QPR
Barnsley leapfrogged relegation rivals QPR, who plunged into the bottom three as a result of the defeat at Oakwell.

Marc Richards put the home side ahead on the stroke of half-time and, despite a suspicion of offside, he converted a Martin Devaney cross from close range.

Rangers mounted an impressive fightback but Paul Furlong and Dexter Blackstock failed to capitalise when presented with promising chances.

Barnsley wrapped up the win when Brian Howard chipped in from 20 yards.

Barnsley manager Simon Davey:
"We're pleased to get the win and we've said in the last couple of weeks it's the result that matters.

"We've now put together two wins and that's what we need at this stage of the season.

"Pretty football doesn't get you results and if we need to grind out results then that's what we'll do." BBC


A WONDER goal by Brian Howard put the icing on the cake as the Reds battled to claim a fine victory at Oakwell against Championship rivals QPR.

Reds boss Simon Davey, unsurprisingly, kept faith with the side that did so well at Luton last time out. There was no place again in the 16 for Paul Hayes or Paul Heckingbottom and new signing Peter Rajczi got his first taste of Oakwell watching from the stands.

QPR started strongly with full back Zesh Rehman managing to get the better of Adam Eckersley on three minutes down the flank. Rehman's cross was excellent but it was matched by Paul Reid's goal-saving header to clear the danger on the six yard line.

At the other end Daniel Nardiello almost got half a yard to get a shot away in the area on seven minutes but found his path to goal blocked by Damion Stewart.

Another cynical foul by Rangers left Marc Richards in a heap on nine minutes and the striker managed to brush himself down to glance Martin Devaney's free kick against a defender and wide of the target.

Howard, who seemed again to be the target for QPR, was left in agony by another ridiculously heavy challenge on 14 minutes as this time it was Adam Bolder's turn to kick lumps out of the Reds midfielder.

Nick Colgan had to be alert on 17 minutes to grab Lee Cook's free kick under pressure from Stewart and Paul Furlong although Dexter Blackstock's dive to con the foul in the first place under Antony Kay's challenge should never have been allowed.

The Reds were almost punished for some hesitant defending on 21 minutes as Jimmy Smith crashed a shot just wide from the edge of the area after the Barnsley backline had struggled to deal with Bolder's cross.

Sam Timoska and Sam Togwell traded yellow cards before a wonderful piece of play by Howard split the QPR defence wide open on 35 minutes to send Richards in but Simon Royce made an outstanding save although a late offside flag would have ruled out any goal.

Howard almost grabbed the opener on 40 minutes as he broke well from the middle of the park before slamming a left-footed shot high over the top of Royce's goal.

Smith went close again on 43 minutes as he smashed a shot against Kay from 18 yards although the chance was created more by Furlong's handball in the area than anything. From the corner Richards had to be alert to hook the ball over his own bar from six yards out.

The opening goal finally came deep in stoppage time as Richards somehow managed to beat the offside trap to reach Bobby Hassell's cross and coolly slotted the ball past Royce from four yards out.

QPR came out after the break with all guns blazing although they had some kamikaze Reds defending and distribution to thank for much of their early pressure. Cook managed to get in behind Hassell on 50 minutes on cross well but Eckersley really earned his money with an outstanding header at the back post to deny Blackstock an easy tap in.

Smith then took advantage of another defensive slip to hammer the ball across the face of goal on 56 minutes but Furlong could not turn it in from six yards out. Rehman finally forced Colgan into a save on 58 minutes as he met Cook's free kick at the back post but could only head straight at the Reds keeper.

The Reds had a massive let off on 63 minutes as Blackstock's downward header from Cook's cross appeared to strike an arm in the area but the referee gave nothing despite huge protests from the QPR players and bench.

Bolder lashed a wild effort high over on 69 minutes before Timoska went one better by threatening to smash the top row of seats in the North Stand with an equally ferocious strike off target five minutes later. At the other end Richards almost caught out Royce with a snap shot on 76 minutes that the QPR keeper did well to parry away.

Livewire winger Cook had the Rangers faithful on their feet on 80 minutes as he was given time and space to run at the Barnsley defence again but his low shot lacked the quality of his burst through the middle of the park and flew well, well wide.

The Reds could have made the game safe on 87 minutes as Hassell met Devaney's corner with purpose but could not direct his header on target from 12 yards out.

Howard did end the contest in the first minute of stoppage time with another goal of the season contender. The midfielder broke forward before sending an exquisite chip over Royce and into the back of the net from 25 yards. Barnsley

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