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Tuesday, August 25, 2009

QPR Scrape Into The Third Round...Reports and Managerial Comments re QPR vs Accrington

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QPR 2 Accrington Stanley 1

- Jim Magilton failed to hide his disappointment with the R's first half display, despite seeing his side progress to the third round of the Carling Cup at the expense of an excellent Accrington Stanley side.
- Goals from Hogan Ephraim and Wayne Routledge eventually handed Rangers a 2-1 victory, but the Hoops boss was far from impressed, commenting: "They came here with nothing to lose, but you can only commend them for a quite magnificent display.
- "They totally outplayed us in the first half.
- "The goal gave us a lift, but we couldn't have played any worse than we did in the first half.
- "You can't defend that first half display. It's just not good enough and things need to improve very, very quickly."
- Magilton added: "I expect far, far better from the lads.
- "It was a real potential banana skin, but Accrington deserve credit - they were outstanding to a man.
- "Unfortunately, we've got a certain few who believe they can just turn it on and off, but you can't in this game.
- "You always need to show your opponents respect, but one or two of our lads were kidding themselves tonight with their performances.
- "I'm going to shake the living daylights of them

QPR Official Site QPR vs Accrington 2 - 1 Attendance:
5,203 Referee:
Hogan Ephraim and Wayne Routledge continued their scoring runs in the Carling Cup against Accrington Stanley, as they put Rangers into round three.

Stanley, in all fairness, did pose some threat to the R's in the first half.

But Rangers were much the better after the break, with Ephraim's looping effort finding the goal in the 68th minute after a good spell of possession.

Routledge added a second in injury time, before Michael Symes netted a consolation for Accrington.

Rangers Gaffer Jim Magilton made no less than eight changes to the side that drew with Nottingham Forest at Loftus Road on Saturday afternoon.

Only Peter Ramage, Damion Stewart and goalscorer at the weekend Mikele Leigertwood kept their places in the R's starting XI against League Two visitors Accrington Stanley.

Though the changes didn't mean that Rangers were short on quality, with the likes of Akos Buzsaky, Ephraim and Rowan Vine all involved in an attempt to put the hosts into round three.

In other team news, goalkeeper Tom Heaton made his first R's start following a three-month emergency loan move from Manchester United.

As the game kicked off under the beam of the Loftus Road floodlights, tributes were made to the late Ray Jones to mark the second anniversary of his tragic passing.

And it was Rangers who started the brighter, creating the game's first chance. After a long pass up to Ephraim, he played a cushioned ball into Vine, who cut in to beat one man before shooting straight at keeper Alan Martin in the Stanley goal.

Play then switched to the other end, as Stanley broke at pace and had the best opportunity of the tie to date to take the lead. After a neat pass found its way to Sean McConville down the right, he had the time and space to pick out Symes on the edge of the area.

The Accrington forward did all he could after that, unleashing a rasping shot at the bottom right-hand corner. Fortunately though for the R's, Heaton was more than equal to the effort to tip it wide.

The game wasn't exactly being played at a frantic pace, though chances were forthcoming. Soon after, good link-up play between Vine and Ephraim enabled the latter to cut in and shoot - though that effort went just wide of the Accrington goal.

Stanley, to their credit, were far from passengers in this second round tie and were doing a good job of frustrating Rangers. Heaton was forced into another save after a dangerous free-kick from Luke Joyce looked to be heading for the bottom right-hand corner, though the Red Devils loanee got down well to palm the ball to safety.

Moments later it was the visitors who again threatened to take the lead with arguably the best chance of the first period. After a fantastic long pass, Symes chested down fantastically before beating his full-back and shooting for goal, though that effort went just wide of Heaton's right-hand post.

Just before the break Rangers could have taken the lead when Vine was played through on goal down the left, though he could only blast his effort straight at Martin, who parried the ball out for a corner.

Rangers were far from the free-flowing footballing side that they had been in previous fixtures. Mindful of that, R's Manager Magilton made a double switch come half-time. Gary Borrowdale and Adel Taarabt replaced Kaspars Gorkss and Patrick Agyemang respectively for the hosts.

And they were changes that seemed to spring Rangers into life as soon after the interval, they nearly broke the deadlock.

After a superb centre from a corner by Buzsaky, the ball broke loose to Stewart from close range, who could only thunder the ball over the crossbar.

Buoyed by that chance the R's then went on the attack again, and when Buzsaky gave the ball to Taarabt in the middle of the park, he beat one man before shooting just wide from 25-yards out.

There could be no question that Rangers were now having the better of the possession. After a ball was played over to Ephraim on the left, he cut in before unleashing a fierce strike in at goal and it was a shot that had to be beaten away by Martin in the visitors' net.

The introduction of Taarabt was something that seemed to give the R's that little bit extra, and it was that man who played a part, as Rangers took a 68th minute lead.

Driving through the middle, Taarabt played a lovely, measured pass out wide to Peter Ramage. The right-back then crossed for Ephraim, who controlled well on the edge of the box before sending a looping effort home to put Rangers in front.

Not long after that, the R's were on the attack once again, and only a fine diving save from Martin - who pushed the ball away for a corner - could stop Vine from scoring after a clever through ball from Leigertwood.

In added time, Rangers put the tie beyond Stanley. After receiving the ball from a throw-in, Routledge cut in past two men before sending in a thunderous strike on the edge of the area that hit the underside of the crossbar and went in.

That scoreline may have been a little unjust on the visitors, so maybe it was deserved that Symes sent home a late consolation for Stanley.

Though that was all it was to be, as the R's put themselves into the hat for Saturday's Carling Cup third round draw.

QPR: Heaton, Ramage, Stewart, Mahon (Routledge 68), Leigertwood, Vine, Buzsaky, Agyemang (Taarabt 46), Gorkss (Borrowdale 46), Connolly, Ephraim.

Subs: Helguson, Pellicori, Balanta, Cerny.

Goals: Ephraim (68), Routledge (90).

Bookings: Ramage (28).

Accrington Stanley: Martin, Kempson, Procter, Miles, Joyce, Edwards, Ryan (Turner 81), Winnard, McConville (Grant 73), Symes, Murphy (Kee 73).
Subs: Richardson, Mullin, King, Dunbavin.
Goals: Symes (90).
Bookings: Ryan (38).
Referee: Mr C L Pawson.
Attendance: 5, 203. QPR

Goals from Hogan Ephraim and Wayne Routledge eased the pressure on QPR manager Jim Magilton as brave Accrington bowed out of the Carling Cup at the second-round stage.

Magilton, who took over the helm at Loftus Road in the summer, is already under fire with Rangers having failed to win a game in the Championship this season - and chairman Flavio Briatore is not renowned for his patience.

But after being given an almighty scare by their League Two opponents, Ephraim pounced for the winner in the 68th minute and Routledge made sure in the last minute to send the 1967 winners into the hat for the third-round draw on Saturday.

Michael Symes was a handful for QPR all night and he deservedly got a consolation goal for Stanley in stoppage time.

After QPR striker Patrick Agyemang blasted a shot over the crossbar, Accrington, who knocked Nottingham Forest out of the Carling Cup in 2006, nearly took a shock lead.

Symes unleashed a 25-yard effort which was saved by QPR goalkeeper Tom Heaton, on loan from Manchester United.

Heaton was called into action again in the 12th minute to deny Symes for a second time before Gavin Mahon's 18-yard shot was comfortably dealt with by Stanley stopper Alan Martin.

Symes was in the thick of the action again 12 minutes later. After he was up-ended by Mikele Leigertwood, James Ryan produced a decent attemt from 30 yards which Heaton parried.

QPR were struggling to handle Symes and he was on hand to fire another attempt at goal but could not find the target from 18 yards.

The home side responded and Rowan Vine's effort was parried away by Martin.

Magilton made a double substitution at the break as he targeted an improvement in the second half and within 65 seconds Akos Buzsaky blasted a shot wide before Damion Stewart put his effort over the bar from six yards.

QPR were starting to dominate and after Adel Taarabt was off-target, Buzsaky forced Martin into a smart save to deny him from 20 yards.

Stanley were coming under increasing pressure and Martin was called into action again to keep out Gavin Mahon's strike from range.

The home side finally broke Accrington's resistance in the 68th minute through Ephraim

Peter Ramage delivered the cross and Ephraim brought the ball down before producing a neat lob from 18 yards.

They nearly added to their lead moments later only for Martin to come out on top yet again to thwart Vine.

Stanley pressed for an equaliser and Billy Kee and Dean Winnard fired efforts off-target either side of John Miles being denied by Heaton before Routledge thumped home a second.

There was still time for Accrington to deservedly get a goal through the impressive Symes. SPORTING LIFE

Lancashire Telegraph FULL TIME: QPR 2 Accrington Stanley 1
ACCRINGTON Stanley were left to rue missed first-half chances as they were knocked out of the Carling Cup at QPR tonight.

The Reds had the better of the first 45 minutes in the second round tie but eventually went down to goals from Hogan Ephraim and Wayne Routledge in the second half, with Michael Symes scoring a late consolation.

Symes - brought into the side for Paul Mullin - saw an early chance saved, although Alan Martin had to save Gavin Mahon’s free kick at the other end.

Jimmy Ryan came close with a free kick of his own for Stanley, with Rangers keeper Tom Heaton saving before Symes was offside from the rebound.

A fine Stanley move then should have seen them go ahead, but Symes fired wide from Ryan’s pass.

QPR almost scored when Martin saved from Rowan Vine, but the hosts were booed off at the interval before bringing on Adel Taarabt and Gary Borrowdale for the second half.

Akos Buzsaky put a shot wide just after the break, while QPR kept the pressure on and Damion Stewart turned the ball over the bar from close range when he should have scored.

Taarabt missed the target with a shot before Martin saved from Buzsaky and Mahon.

But the home side broke the deadlock in the 68th minute when Peter Ramage put in a cross from the right and Ephraim volleyed past Martin.

Immediately afterwards the Stanley keeper had to save from Vine as QPR sought a second goal.

The Reds, though, did not give up on an equaliser and John Miles forced a good save from Heaton.

But QPR sealed their progression to the third round when Wayne Routledge slammed home off the underside of the bar in injury time.

Symes found the net on the turn in the dying seconds for Stanley but it was always going to be too late to rescue a result.

Stanley: Alan Martin, Peter Murphy (Billy Kee 73), Phil Edwards, Darran Kempson, Dean Winnard, Jimmy Ryan (Chris Turner 81), Luke Joyce, Andy Procter, John Miles, Sean McConville (Bobby Grant 73), Michael Symes.

Subs not used: Ian Dunbavin, Leam Richardson, Gary King, Paul Mullin.

QPR: Tom Heaton, Peter Ramage, Damion Stewart, Kaspars Gorkss (Gary Borrowdale 46), Matt Connolly, Rowan Vine, Gavin Mahon (Wayne Routledge 68), Mikele Leigertwood, Akos Buzsaky, Hogan Ephraim, Patrick Agyemang (Adel Taarabt 46).

Subs not used: Radek Cerny, Wayne Routledge, Angelo Balanta, Alessandro Pellicori, Heidar Helguson.

Referee: Craig Pawson (South Yorkshire

Lancashire Telegraph

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