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Sunday, December 16, 2007

Snippets: No Happy Return for Nick Ward...Watford's Lloyd Doyley?...One Year Ago: QPR's Wolves Loss

Nick Ward's Melbourne Victory lost 3-1 at home to Newcastle Jets. Ward came on as a second half sub. Teams Today's Melbourne-Newcastle Match Report FourFourTwoAustralia: "....After arriving in Melbourne earlier this week, former Queens Park Rangers midfielder Ward made his first Victory appearance as a replacement for Patafta for the second half and slotted into the attacking midfield role immediately..." Report

News of The World QPR want to sign Watford's Lloyd Doyley. (News of the World) BBC
[Lloyd Doyles is a 25-year old defender, primarily right back - See Watford Official Site profile and Wikipedia/Doyley]

One Year Ago December 16, 2006
QPR's Fifth Consecutive Loss: QPR 0 Wolves 1. The crowd was just over 12,000. Wolves goal came in the 48th minute through Knightly. The QPR team from a year ago:
QPR: Royce, Milanese, Rehman, Mancienne, Bignot, Rowlands, Smith, Gallen, Bircham (Furlong 65), Blackstock, Jones. Subs: Cole, Ward, Baidoo, Bailey.

[Wolverhampton Wanderers: Murray, Olofinjana, Breen, Craddock, McNamara, Bothroyd, Potter, Davies (Clarke 75), Little, McIndoe, Kightly.]

League Table - December 2006
Crystal Palace 23 26
Luton 23 26
QPR 23 24
Barnsley 23 23
Hull 23 20
Leeds 23 20
Southend 23 16


"...We're in trouble - serious trouble.
"We enjoyed a period of brief respite when we jumped up to mid-table, but make no mistake; we're in big trouble now....'' (Official Site)

"...Today said a lot about us....strong>After they scored, we showed a lack of quality and our delivery was awful....Some of my players are out of contract at the end of the season...That means six more paydays and then they might be out of work. If that was me, I’d be frightened to death..." (Sunday Times)

"Some of the boys who played today have six more pay packets until the end of the season and could be out of work...That would frighten me to death. They should realise they are playing for their livelihood and we need to withhold judgement until the end of the season." (People
John Gregory's Post Match Comments - QPR Official Site
John Gregory bemoaned the R's second half display after the 1-0 defeat to Wolverhampton Wanderers.
Speaking exclusively to www.qpr.co.uk, Gregory said: "I was pleased with the first half display. 0-0 is always a good score at the break and the fact we restricted them to no chances of note was a huge confident boost going in to the second half.
"The goal changed the course of the game though. It knocked the stuffing out of us and we crept back into our shells.
"We went too long and that's not something I'm encouraging the players to do once we've gone a goal down.
"We had 40 minutes to find a goal, but we lacked patience.''
The defeat left Rangers just four points above the dreaded drop zone and Gregory admits it's a dogfight for survival: "We're in trouble - serious trouble.
"We enjoyed a period of brief respite when we jumped up to mid-table, but make no mistake; we're in big trouble now.''
Despite the loss - which arrived courtesy of Michael Kightly's 49th minute strike - Gregory praised three of his defenders, commenting: "Michael Mancienne and Simon Royce were outstanding, but you can't overlook Mauro Milanese either.
"Unfortunately, the fact I'm talking about two defenders and a keeper tells the story of the second half.'' QPR

WOLVES MANAGER - Wolves Official Site
Sprightly Kightly Off The Mark

The travelling Wolves fans saw a glimpse of Michael Kightly's scoring ability as the Gray's winger buried the only goal of today's game at QPR.
The on-loan 20-year-old could have claimed more but his manager is nonetheless delighted with the progress the player has made since joining the club.
Boss McCarthy gave his players a rocket at half time after they produced little in the first 45 minutes.
His words hit home and Wolves were far more productive in the second period.
Mick said: "The first half started fairly even but they got a foothold in the game and Matt (Murray) had to make some good saves.
"But, to be fair, we were doing more to harm ourselves than they were doing to us. We weren't competing or passing the ball about.
"I think the players got the message at half-time.
"Michael did well - but he should have had four!
"He's a lad that looks as though he's going to score - he looks like a good acquisition for us.
"It's a big step up for him but there are players who can do that. And from day one he has looked comfortable in training.
"He hasn't had really had his chance yet because Lewis Gobern has been playing well at home, but he offers us something different when we are away."

QPR Official Site - Match Report
Michael Kightly notched the only goal of the game, as Rangers succumbed to a fifth defeat on the spin.
The Wolves midfielder struck early in the second half to hand Mick McCarthy's men maximum points at Loftus Road.
The last time Rangers lost five matches in a row was some two years ago, when the R's ended 2004 in similar style, with five defeats on the spin.
It could have been a far different story however, if Rangers had made the most of the chances they created in the latter stages of the first half.
After 20 minutes of inactivity, the R's were sparked into life by Jimmy Smith, who escaped the offside trap to head straight at Matt Murray.
Buoyed by that chance, the R's dominated until the break, with Marc Bircham and Ray Jones calling Murray into action.
But it was Wolves who opened the scoring early in the second half, with Kightly taking one touch to control before firing past Simon Royce from 15-yards.
Rangers huffed and puffed as the clock ticked down, but it was Wolves who continued to create chances, with Royce on hand to produce one stunning save after another in the closing stages.
John Gregory recalled fans favourite Bircham to the starting X - the midfieder returning after six weeks on the sidelines with a niggling back injury.
Zesh Rehman and Jones also returned from suspension, at the expense of Damion Stewart and Marc Nygaard respectively.
Gregory again deployed the 3-5-2 formation that worked so well at the Britannia Stadium, as Rangers went gunning for a first victory in five Championship fixtures.
A Friday morning training session at Loftus Road appeared to have very little impact early on, with Rangers guilty of conceding possesion all too often, allowing the visitors' central midfield pairing of Seyi George Olofinjana and Darren Potter plenty of time to orchestrate the play.
In truth, Wolves struggled to make the most of their early possession, with Royce - like his opposite number Matt Murray - a mere spectator in the opening 20 minutes.
When the first opening eventually arrived on 21 minutes, it inevitably fell to the hardworking Smith.
Buoyed by penning a six month extension to his loan contract with the R's just hours before kick-off, Smith arrived bang-on-cue to meet Bircham's impromptu header back into the box, only to nod straight at Murray from six-yards.
Moments later is was the returning Bircham who let fly, smashing a 25-yard right foot drive that whistled inches wide of Murray's right hand post, with the keeper seemingly beaten all ends up.
It was all Rangers by now and when Gary Breen and Murray got themselves in a horrible muddle, Martin Rowlands pounced on the latters' punch, only to loft the ball inches over the bar.
The R's were creating chances at will now and when Jones rose above a static Wolves defence to meet Smith's free-kick on 35 minutes, only a splendid tip over from Murray denied the Rangers front-man.
Jones was been gifted plenty of time and space, but after escaping the attentions of Breen and Jody Craddock on the stroke of half-time, his shot lacked pace and accuracy, falling wide of Murray's right hand post.
Jones picked up where he left off at the start of the second half, firing a fierce downward volley on target, which Murray did well to tip to safety, under pressure from Dexter Blackstock and fellow defender Mark Little.
Unbelievably, it was Wolves who opened the scoring a minute later, from their first notable attack of the contest.
Michael McIndoe roamed free down the left flank and when his cut-back was only half cleared by the otherwise outstanding Michael Mancienne, Kightly pounced to send a fearsome 12-yard strike past the outstretched Royce.
As the R's attempted to find an avenue back into the contest, Dexter Blackstock headed straight at Murray, while at the other end, Royce produced a splendid full stretch save to divert Kightly's deflected effort wide of the post.
Kightly was leading the R's defence a merry dance and when he dispossed Mancienne on the hour, he was through one on one with just Royce to beat. Inexplicably however, he got his lines horribly wrong, opting for a pass instead of a shot, and with it, squandering the chance to put the game to bed.
Wolves were creating chances at will and when Darren Potter picked up possession 25-yards from goal, Royce had to produce yet more heroics, flinging himself full stretch to his left to tip round the Liverpool loanee's stinging drive.
Sensing the game was slipping from their grasp, Gregory introduced Paul Furlong at the expense of the tiring Bircham midway through the half.
His introduction prompted a change in formation, as the R's switched back to the tried and tested 4-4-2.
Despite the reshuffle, it was Wolves who continued to pile forward, breaking at pace at every given opportunity, with Kightly forcing Royce into another flying save in the 75th minute.
Subs: Oakes, Edwards, Johnson, Ricketts.
Scorers: Kightly 48 Bookings: Breen 58, Clarke 90
Attendance: 12, 323 Referee: Mr C J Foy QPR

Kevin Gallen got the winner for MK Dons. Match Report

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