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Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Dowie on QPR's Solid Defense...Norwich Hoping for 25,000 for QPR

Norwich attendances, have over the years been very impressive.

Dowie: QPR's success will be down to "solid" defence

Author: Zehaad Hassan/http://www.sport.co.uk
Iain Dowie, the QPR manager, is delighted with the way his team have responded since they were downed 3-0 against Sheffield United five games ago and believes that a watertight rearguard is the key to promotion to the Premier League.Following that defeat at Bramall Lane he enforced a new defensive system which the players have adopted with great success, conceding twice and dropping only two points since.
The 43-year-old, whose team have moved up to fourth in the Championship and take on 17th-placed Norwich City on Wednesday, said: "I think a decent defence is the key to QPR's success this season and we have spent a lot of time on that.
"We have been working hard since the Sheffield United game - we have changed the system since that disappointing display. I am delighted with how the players have responded and we haven't looked like shipping a lot of goals since then.
"It has really made a difference to us. We look much more solid and we have big pace back there - we are not going to get run away from too many times."
Dowie hinted that his defensive midfielders Alan Mahon and Mikele Leigertwood's recent performances might even marginalise Italian international Damiano Tommasi, who signed as a free agent last Wednesday.
"[Alan] Mahon and [Mikele] Leigertwood deserve a lot of credit for the success of the new defensive system," Dowie added. "Damiano, who plays in the same position, is an established international and won't take long to get up to speed, but I have to be fair to the lads who are here and incumbent.
"However he is a very welcome addition to the squad and with when he is fully fit there will be good competition for places." Report

QPR welcome Emmanuel Ledesma back into their squad for the trip to Carrow Road to face Norwich on Wednesday evening.
The Argentinian midfielder missed Sunday's 4-1 win over Southampton through suspension, having been sent off at Bristol City a fortnight ago.
Hogan Ephraim took Ledesma's place against Saints, while club captain Martin Rowlands helped turn the game as a substitute and Akos Buzsaky (ankle) is close to returning, giving boss Iain Dowie a selection dilemma in midfield.
Centre-half Fitz Hall is back in training after three weeks out with a groin injury, but Dowie is likely to hold him back until Saturday's trip to Coventry.
Former Italy international Damiano Tommasi, who joined Rangers last week, needs to build up his match fitness and striker Rowan Vine continues his rehabilitaion from a broken leg.
Norwich midfielder Darel Russell is expected to be fit to retain his place.
Russell played 89 minutes in the 2-1 win at Plymouth on Saturday, just 10 days after a double hernia operation in Germany.
Boss Glenn Roeder said: "Rusty came though OK. He was a little bit sore, which was to be expected, on Sunday morning. I don't see that's going to be a problem."
Fellow midfielder Sammy Clingan is a out for a month after picking up a shoulder injury during Northern Ireland's 0-0 draw with the Czech Republic last week.
Elliot Omozusi returned from a thigh injury against Plymouth and will again start at right-back while midfielder David Bell could be in the squad for the first time since his summer move from Luton after returning to training following an ankle injury.
Adam Drury is out after he suffered a depressed fracture of the cheek in a behind closed doors friendly and Gary Doherty is not expected back from his ankle injury until November at the earliest. Sporting Life

Evening News 24 - Bumper crowd is expected
City's first victory of the season has grabbed the imagination of fans with a bumper crowd expected for the first midweek home game.
Saturday's 2-1 success at Plymouth, coupled with the prospect of a home debut for new signing Antoine Sibierski, prompted an extra 300 ticket sales yesterday morning alone for the visit of Queen's Park Rangers tomorrow (7.45pm).
With up to 1,200 Rangers fans expected to turn up, the Canaries are hoping to hit the 25,000 mark.
“Business has been brisk and certainly more vibrant than for the first two home games,” said Andrew Cullen, City's director of sales and marketing.
“A combination of both teams winning at the weekend and the signing of Sibierski means we expect to be busy during the course of today.
“QPR have an allocation of 1,400 tickets and we're told they are likely to bring about 1,200 supporters.”
The visit of QPR in April brought a crowd of 25,497, the biggest home gate of 2007-08. EveningNews24

Evening News 24/David Cuffley - Russell fit to face Rangers
Darel Russell has been declared fit to continue first team duties when Norwich City face Queen's Park Rangers at Carrow Road tomorrow night.
Midfielder Russell played 89 minutes in the 2-1 win at Plymouth on Saturday, just 10 days after a double hernia operation in Germany.
And manager Glenn Roeder believes the 27-year-old will be fine for Championship duty again tomorrow.
“Rusty came though OK. He was a little bit sore, which was to be expected, on Sunday morning. I don't see that's going to be a problem,” said Roeder.
“They certainly all want to play, which is important.”
Roeder also suggested that Russell - who has scored in both home games so far - had given him another selection option with his performances as a striker in earlier games.
“What he's done as a striker, I have to say he's done equally as well. There will be football judges who say he's actually done better as a striker. It was a really pleasant surprise how well he played up through the middle,” he said.
“He certainly more than proved his worth. It's another important string to his bow and because he's got physical presence and such high energy levels, he wouldn't be nice to play against.
“I could easily see Antoine Sibierski and Darel Russell playing up front together.”
French loan signing Sibierski, who started a first team game for the first time since January when he scored on his City debut at Plymouth, will also be ready for his first home appearance.
“He was pleasantly surprised how long he lasted. We've wrapped him up in cotton wool since Saturday to make sure he is OK for Wednesday,” said Roeder. Evening News

DAREL Russel has told First News that despite recently having a double hernia operation, he won't let this hold him back as City prepare to play host to QPR and Sheffield Utd this week.
Russell played 89 minutes of the weekend's game at Plymouth and said that although it was an uncomfortable first half, he was pleased with his progression.
He said: "I think I found the first 45 minutes difficult, to get myself moving and to break down the stiffness. But as that went on and as the game progressed I started to feel my way into the game a bit more and it held up well.
"I've got a couple of ugly scars but nothing too bad. For about the last two years now I've been playing with pain and last season I had an injection, which resolved the problem for a little bit. This year it became too much and the decision was made that I needed an operation. It's just when you play a lot of games consistently it becomes painful and difficult sprinting-wise. I just hope that this surgery will resolve the problem and allow me to sprint and move around more easily and pain free."
The 27-year-old added: "It came as a surprise when the gaffer mentioned that he'd like me to start, it was nerve-racking especially so soon after my operation. I'm glad I got through it and that's the main thing, once you get through it you can take confidence from that and keep pushing on and progressing with the injury."
With City's first win of the season now safely in the bag, the Canaries are now concentrating on a duo of matches at Carrow Road this week. With Norwich's game against QPR drawing close, Russell said the result against Plymouth had really given City a chance to push on and move up the table. "It was a fantastic result, we needed those three points, and the same for the goal situation because we needed to score. Now we've got those two situations boxed off, hopefully we can build on them and push on.
"I'd like to keep scoring, if I can put a couple more in that would be nice. We've got players who can score and if we play in the way that we can do, we're capable of scoring goals almost anywhere on the pitch. If we can get two fantastic results, it will put us in a position where we want to be at the end of the season. It would be a great platform to move to and they're two very important games being at home.
"When you have a lot of players coming together it's getting that consistency for the whole season, you can have times where you go through fantastic phases and you can sometimes struggle for a bit. If we can keep that consistency and get it high for long periods, then we'll have a great chance."
With Sammy Clingan now out of action due to a shoulder injury, Russell said he would be only too pleased to reclaim his place in midfield. "It's a fantastic opportunity for me to be playing in there now and it was nice to get the win whilst I was playing in there," he commented.
"It's just disapointing that I've had to come off the back of surgery so you're not fully up to speed as I would like. Hopefully with this week coming up and the games coming thick and fast, I'll be able to get up to speed pretty quickly."
Russell Looks Ahead to Rangers

- Also "Next: Norwich Away"

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