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Saturday, September 19, 2009

QPR Win in Cardiff: Compilation of Reports and Managerial Comments

- The QPR Report Messageboard: Visit - and even post on - the combination quasi-blog and messageboard for additional up-to-the-minute news about QPR, mixed with QPR nostalgia and items of general football interest.

- QPR REPORT Available on TWITTER!

- A couple of devestating pieces re Briatore/Crashgate/Cheating

- Two Goals today for QPR's out-on-loan Helguson ["...[T]he Watford Observer understands will see Rangers pay almost half the striker’s wages during his temporary return and didn’t involve a loan fee..." The Helguson Loan Update
- Tony Hazell Turns Sixty-Two (David Seaman Turns 46?)
- Dave Thomas/AKUTRS: Some Weekly Blog ("Flog") Posts
- One QPR Player in Actim Top 100 Players in Championship: - Wayne Routledge (who moves up to #44)

- Updated League Table

QPR Official Site - Cardiff 0 QPR 2
- Jay Simpson was at the double, as Jim Magilton's men cruised to a comfortable victory against high-flying Cardiff City.
- The Arsenal loanee bagged a first-half brace, on a day when Rangers turned on the style to clinch back-to-back away wins.

In truth, the 2-0 scoreline totally flattered the hosts, with the midfielder quartet of Wayne Routledge, Martin Rowlands, Ben Watson and Akos Buzsaky instrumental throughout, as Rangers dominated proceedings from the first whistle to the last.

Magilton was forced into changes for the trip to the new Cardiff City Stadium.

Adel Taarabt (mumps) and Matthew Connolly (virus) both missed out, as Magilton opted for an attacking 4-4-2 formation in South Wales.

Radek Cerny started in goal, behind a back four of Gary Borrowdale, Kaspars Gorkss, Damion Stewart and Mikele Leigertwood.

Skipper Rowlands returned to partner Watson in midfield, with Routledge and the returning Buzsaky occupying the wide berths.

In attack, hot-shot Simpson was partnered by Rowan Vine.

Cardiff midfielder Joe Ledley passed a late fitness test to take his place in Dave Jones' starting line-up, but there was no place for the suspended Steven McPhail.

In-form front-man Michael Chopra was joined in attack by Jay Bothroyd.

As the match commenced in front of a typically lively atmosphere, both sides were doing a good job of cancelling out each other's advances.

Indeed it took just under 10 minutes for the first clear opportunity of the game to come, though it was Rangers who were to have it.

After Simpson was dispossessed on the edge of the area the ball fell to Buzsaky, though the Magical Magyar could only shoot high and wide of the goal.

Moments later, the pair combined again as Buzsaky played Simpson through on goal, but the Arsenal loanee ran the ball too far in front of himself, as the hosts' backline cleared the danger.

There could be no doubt as to which side were having the better of the affair, and you could sense that an R's opener could be in the offing.

And soon after, Rangers didn't disappoint, taking a 19th minute lead in the process.

So much of the R's early play had consisted of some neat, intricate play - and it was exactly that brand of football that was on show for the opening strike of the game.

After Borrowdale picked the ball up wide on the left, he played the ball up to Vine on the edge of the area.

The former Birmingham marksman used his strength to hold of a defender before sending an exquisite through ball to Simpson who made no mistake thereafter, coolly slotting the ball down low past Marshall despite claims for offside from the Cardiff backline.

The R's were undoubtedly good value for their lead, as the hosts were struggling to get a foothold in the game.

Indeed that was evident with the fact that it took over 20 minutes for the Bluebirds to have their first shot on target; an effort from Ledley that flew straight at Cerny

Soon after, Rangers were again on the attack again and should - in fairness - have added a second. After a defence splitting pass from midfield by Watson, Simpson again found himself free down the right.

With time at his mercy, the striker breezed past one defender before cutting in to shoot, but his effort went agonisingly wide of the bottom left-hand corner.

Rangers were dictating the pace of the game, and only a brief opportunity - as Burke's rasping shot was well held by Cerny - was to give the visitors any trouble to note.

And such was the R's dominance in the opening half, that they added a another goal just before the break, as Simpson notched his second in the 40th minute.

After a clever switch to the opposite flank with Buzsaky, Routledge received the ball around halfway and made a darting run before playing Simpson through again down the right.

The Arsenal loanee wasn't to pass on this opportunity though, putting his head down before drilling home low into the bottom left-hand corner.

Rangers two up at the interval - and it was no more than they had deserved.

Buoyed by their performance in the first half, the R's came out after the break with a certain swagger about their play.

In fact they could have added a third early on when Watson's dangerous corner was diverted goalwards by Simpson, only for a forest of legs on the line to deny him his hat-trick.

This was pure dominance from Rangers, coupled with an abundance of total football - and quite how Vine failed to add that killer third moments later is anyone's guess.

After a deflection saw the ball enter his path, the fit-again striker was through on goal down the left and when he cut back, his curling shot clipped the outside of the post and went wide.

Moments later, Vine was again getting in on the act as he drove at the Cardiff defence after picking the ball up just after the halfway line, though his driving shot was well dealt with by Marshall.

With time running out, Magilton was keen to freshen things up. Alessandro Pellicori replaced goalscorer Simpson, before Patrick Agyemang entered the fray at the expense of the outstanding Vine.

The changes did little to halt the R's charge, with Buzsaky nearly adding a third with a late free-kick that curled inches wide.

Cardiff City: Marshall, Kennedy, Hudson, Whittingham (Magennis 54), Chopra, Bothroyd (Scimeca 67), Burke, Quinn, Gerrard, Ledley, Taiwo (Rae 54).
Subs not used: Enckelman, Gyepes, Capaldi, Comminges.
Bookings: Quinn (81), Chopra (84)
QPR: Cerny, Stewart, Leigertwood, Routledge, Vine (Agyemang 82), Buzsaky, Gorkss, Rowlands, Watson, Simpson (Pellicori 77), Borrowdale.
Subs not used: Heaton, Ramage, Mahon, Faurlin, Ephraim.
Goals: Simpson (19 & 40) Bookings: Stewart (26), Pellicori (87)
Referee: Mr L Probert Attendance: 20, 121 QPR

The Times - Jay Simpson hits the ground running for QPR

On-loan Arsenal youngster Jay Simpson struck twice to give QPR a 2-0 win at Cardiff City Stadium.

The 20-year-old, whose pace troubled the home side all afternoon, registered his first two goals for Rangers in just his third appearance with a pair of well-taken first-half strikes.

The home side made an encouraging start with some neat interplay pushing Rangers back in to their own half.

Perhaps the best chance for the Bluebirds early on fell to Jay Bothroyd but his drive was diverted wide by the outstretched leg of Mikele Leigertwood.

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The visitors created their first real chance 10 minutes in when Akos Buzsaky found himself with time and space to line up a shot, but it was always rising and never really troubled home goalkeeper David Marshall who watched it over the bar.

A midfield battle ensued and chances became scarce. Midfielder Chris Burke and Bothroyd both tried their luck from distance - both were well wide.

But the opener arrived in the 19th minute when Simpson notched his first goal for the Rs.

Against the run of play defender Gary Borrowdale lofted the ball into the box and while the City defenders hesitated and appealed for the offside Simpson pounced to stab home a deflected Rowan Vine effort from close range.

Midfielder Peter Whittingham had a shot blocked by Ben Watson, while Joe Ledley fired a harmless effort straight into Radek Cerny's arms as the hosts tried to find an equaliser.

QPR's Simpson could and should have doubled his tally on the half-hour mark but skewed his shot wide of the left-hand post from a promising position.

But it did not matter as he helped himself to a second five minutes before the interval.

Wayne Routledge, who went racing down the right, threaded a neat little ball in behind the Bluebirds defence and Simpson, who came in on the angle, advanced towards goal before thumping the ball underneath Marshall.

It could easily have been three shortly after the interval but for Cardiff's Mark Kennedy, who cleared a Routledge shot off the line.

With 53 minutes gone Vine hit the post, curling the ball beyond Marshall who was relieved to see it come back off the woodwork.

Gavin Rae and Burke both had tame efforts dealt with by Cerny as Rangers were clearly happy to sit on their two-goal lead and absorb whatever the hosts could throw at them.

There were few clear cut chances in the closing stages but Burke was denied by Cerny, while Vine had a shot held by Marshall.

The impressive Simpson was withdrawn 13 minutes from time and the scoreline remained the same as the London club, who had only scored two goals on their travels until today, made it back-to-back wins on the road. The Times


Jim Magilton was full of praise for his magnificent R's side, as they picked up back-to-back away wins with a 2-0 defeat of Cardiff City this afternoon.

Jay Simpson's first-half brace ensured Rangers would travel back to W12 with all three points, and Gaffer Magilton told www.qpr.co.uk: "We executed the plan to perfection.

"To a man, we were outstanding and I'm delighted for the lads.

"It's never easy in the Championship, but we got out of the blocks really quickly and stamped our authority on the game.

"We were clinical today. Jay took his two goals well.

"We've had a steady start without really finishing teams off. Today we managed to score at the right times, and some of our football was fantastic.

"We knew what to expect here, Cardiff are a very good side. Dave Jones' sides are never easy to play against.

"They (Cardiff) are always well organised and they've got a potent threat in (Michael) Chopra and (Jay) Bothroyd.

"But we thought if we kept them quiet, which we did, we'd have every chance of winning the game."

Although the R's were excellent to a man, Magilton was keen to pay tribute to a front pairing of Rowan Vine and Simpson, commenting: "Jay's come in and been great. His work ethic has been outstanding.

"He was unlucky not to score against Scunthorpe and Peterborough. He just needed a goal to get him going and today thankfully he got his just rewards.

"I thought Rowan Vine was very good too. It's nice to have him back in the side. He was unlucky not to score what would have been a great goal for him, when the ball came back off the post."

With much of the media talk after the R's victory centred around off-the-field issues involving Flavio Briatore, Magilton added: "This victory is for Mr Briatore as much as everybody else.

"I'm sure he will be delighted tonight QPR


QPR manager Jim Magilton claimed his side had been near faultless after their game plan worked to perfection in their 2-0 win at Cardiff.

A first-half brace from Jay Simpson sent the Bluebirds spinning to their second successive home defeat at their new stadium.

He latched on to a ball from Rowan Vine in the 18th minute to rifle home from close range and then repeated the dose five minutes before the interval.

Wayne Routledge switched play to the right to wrongfoot the home defence and Simpson raced in unmarked to shoot across David Marshall and into the far corner.

Magilton said: "We executed our plans to perfection which rarely happens although it helped that we never had a midweek match while I saw Cardiff go down to 10 men in their game and forced to work very hard in their match against Reading.

"Some of our play today was excellent, we were clinical and Jay Simpson scored two good goals to earn just reward for a great performance.

"I don't want to get too carried away but to come to Cardiff and win in such a manner was very pleasing.

"This is a difficult division to get out of and I am no different to all the other managers who believe they can make an impact."

Cardiff rarely played like a side challenging at the top and Michael Chopra and Jay Bothroyd rarely had a shot on goal.

If Vine had found the net on the hour instead of hitting the far post the result would have been much worse for Dave Jones' side.

"We never got going and looked slow and lack lustre," said Jones.

"When it is going wrong you have to stick at it and it took an 18-year-old in Josh Magennis to show the rest of the players the way.

"Perhaps some of them thought they only had to turn up but football has a habit of kicking you in the teeth.

"Our forwards were non-existent although Chris Burke did try but there were some who failed to put a decent shift in.

"I will forgive the players if their passing is off but I can't defend them for that performance because you cannot stroll around the pitch and all the hard work in midweek has been lost.

"The opening goal is always important and their first was offside but we shouldn't have stood still trying to play it.

"We never worked hard enough today and that is what has let us down." Sporting Life

Cardiff Official Site - DAVE: THAT WAS SO LACKLUSTRE
- Dave Jones emerged from a 40-minute after-match inquest with his team to say: "Nobody emerges from that dressing room with any credibility apart from an 18-year-old."

Manager Jones singled out teenage sub Josh Magennis as the only player to escape criticism after the 2-0 defeat by QPR.

He said: "Nothing seemed to come off for us today. People looked devoid of any passing movement. Too many people weren't prepared to put a shift in. Everything that could have gone wrong went wrong.

"I don't believe that it's because we played Wednesday and it took a lot out of us. Today, maybe one or two thought it was going to happen for them, and football has a tendency to kick you in the teeth. We showed all our strengths at Reading, and we were the opposite of that today.

"We had an 18-year-old who ran around and tried to make things happen. One or two others need to take a leaf out of that book somewhere along the line. And you can't rely on an 18-year-old to go on and set our play up. Our forward play was non-existent today. Burkey tried and tried and tried but if there's no movement in front of him, he's just going to run up blind alleys.

"You get games like that through your career as a player but it''s the ones who keep running and chasing who can make it happen. Everything will desert you - your passing, your decision making - but it never stops you running.

"Before the match, we spoke about Rangers being more dangerous away from home because they are getting flak at home. They are probably more comfortable away. We didn't shut them down and make life difficult for them.

"The first goal was offside but we shouldn't have been playing offside anyway. We were caught out of shape because somebody didn't want to run five yards to stop them from playing the ball.

"Too many of our players want to play the way they want to play instead of the way we want them to play.

"Young Josh tried to make things happen, but I'm relying on a kid to get us back into a game of football. He's learning his trade and training with us and he needs to play, but not lead the line. There were enough people on that pitch today to lead the line but they didn't want to do it. That's a bitter pill for them.

"We never started with any tempo Sadly that was true of my front line. People at the back will lump balls if there is no movement in front of them.

"There are not many times I've come in as manager of this club and said that about the players. But this was probably the most lacklustre performance I've seen from us in a long time. They didn't compete hard enough.

"I can't defend them in any way whatsoever. What I can't accept is that we didn't work hard enough. I've been in the dressing room and that all know that." Cardiff


Following the disappointing loss against Queens Park Rangers, substitute Gavin Rae pulled no punches with his honest assessment of the performance, admitting that the squad took full responsibility and are keen to make amends quickly.

He said: "After a defeat like that you just want another game as soon as possible, it's going to be a tough game at Villa but, it's better to get today out of our system as quickly as possible.

"It was frustrating watching from the bench because you obviously want the boys to do well and keep the momentum going, but we've not really got going at all today.

"I think all the players would agree that nothing happened for us today, nothing we tried came off - it was one of those games. The Reading game was a good battling performance, but today, losing two goals in the first half made it tough to come back from.

"The manager made it clear at half-time that he was going to change things soon after, depending on how it went. Obviously I was glad to get on, but I was disappointed that I couldn't help to change the result.

"The gaffer was obviously raging and he went through every player and told us what's what. We'll obviously keep what was said in house, but it just wasn't good enough. If you perform like that then there's nothing you can come back with.

"That's why it was so frustrating - when you're not playing well you certainly try your heart out and maybe the effort just wasn't there today.

"As players we've got to remember this result because we have to remember that we can't play that badly again if we want to do well in this league.

"That's certainly up there as one of our worst performances. Luckily there haven't been handfuls of performances like today, but it certainly wasn't a good day." Cardiff

Cardiff Official Site by Mark Denham, from Cardiff City Stadium.

Cardiff City succumbed to a second consecutive home defeat to QPR on Saturday afternoon.

Fresh on the back of a good midweek win, the Bluebirds struggled to find any real rhythm against a stubborn QPR side. Jay Simpson was the man who secured the points for the away side, firing home from six yards out after twenty minutes and again from the right hand side of the area five minutes from half time.

City struggled to get back in to the game in the second half, Rangers looking more likely to get a third than City did to score. It was a frustrating afternoon for the twenty thousand strong Bluebirds crowd, a game that Dave Jones' men will quickly look to forget as they prepare for Villa next Wednesday.

Chronological Report

City kicked off from left to right on a bright afternoon at Cardiff City Stadium. The opening exchanges were quiet, though the Bluebirds soon got in to their stride.

City won a free kick just outside the Rangers penalty area on seven minutes after Joe Ledley had been brought down following a neat Whittingham through ball. Whittingham took the free-kick, aiming for the head of Jay Bothroyd, but the returning Kaspars Gorkss headed away the danger for the away side.

The game seemed to settle after this early moment of excitement, the following ten minutes only really broken up by a strong, committed challenge by Paul Quinn on the returning Wayne Routledge. Jay Simpson looked for a moment to be in behind Mark Hudson in front of goal on the fifteen minute mark, though the slide rule pass from Rowan Vine had just too much pace on it for the on-loan Arsenal man to reach.

It was Rangers who took the lead after nineteen minutes when Simpson slotted home the easiest of finishes from six yards out. Rowan Vine again caused disruption on the edge of the City area, his tame shot being deflected through the legs of Anthony Gerrard before falling nicely in to the stride of Simpson. The away side deserved the lead, perhaps being the better of the two sides after twenty minutes of play in a game that struggled to find flow or rhythm.

GOAL: Cardiff City0-1 QPR (Jay Simpson, 19).

Apparently rocked by the early goal, City looked somewhat panicked in attack for the subsequent passages of play. It was Solomon Taiwo who looked the most likely to settle the home side down, his neat and tidy midfield play standing out among other rather frenetic moments of play.

City earned a free-kick thirty yards out after twenty-six minutes of play, Whittingham's disguised shot deflecting for a corner on the far left of the field. Whittingham's corner was dangerous, though the curl of the ball evaded everyone allowing Rangers to clear easily.

It was approaching the half hour mark before City had their first chance on goal; Whittingham again ventured forward up the left hand touch line before laying off Joe Ledley to strike at Rangers 'keeper Cerny. There was venom in the effort, though Cerny was right down the line of it and collected easily.

Rangers had a golden opportunity to double their lead in the very next attack. The diminutive Simpson again found space in behind the Bluebirds back-four before cutting inside and shooting when he arguably should have played in a demonstrative and superbly placed Rowan Vine. The score remained the same, though Rangers could have sealed this up before the interval.

This was a first-half void of significant penalty area activity. City began looking more dangerous in the final third, though their opportunities on goal, similar to those that Rangers created, were long range efforts that failed to threaten.

That was until the fortieth minute. Simpson got his second goal of the game after Taiwo had been much too easily dispossessed by Routledge in the centre of midfield. Routledge ran directly at the heart of the Bluebirds defence before playing in Simpson superbly with the outside of his boot. Simpson was composed and clinical, striking home from the right hand side of the area past a flailing David Marshall.

GOAL: Cardiff City 0-2 QPR (Jay Simpson, 40).

The half played out without much more real activity, City appearing frustrated with QPR as they knocked the ball fluidly around the centre of the park.

HALF TIME: Cardiff City 0-2 QPR

QPR started the second half in much the same fashion as they finished the first. An apparently scuffed corner from the far side taken by Ben Watson would have fallen for either Simpson or Gorkss to tuck home from two yards out had Paul Quinn not managed to hook the ball away at the death.

Cardiff were struggling to clear their lines, allowing Rangers to ping the ball back and forth around and inside the City area. Rowan Vine was an inch from settling the game on fifty-two minutes when he beat Marshall from the left of the area and struck the upright after being played onside by Quinn.

Dave Jones made changes on fifty-five minutes, introducing Gavin Rae and Josh Magennis in place of Solomon Taiwo and Peter Whittingham. City seemed to lack urgency and much of that crisp, urgent football that has been part of their early season form.

Substitutions: Cardiff City - Gavin Rae for Solomon Taiwo and Josh Magennis for Peter Whittingham (54 mins).

City's three pronged attack offered more options in theory, though the Bluebirds continued to struggle against a resistant Rangers back-line. Josh Magennis began to see a lot of the ball, though even his physical presence seemed unable to threaten Cerny. Riccy Scimeca was introduced with twenty-five minutes to play as City reverted to type to try and get back in to the game.

Substitution: Cardiff City - Riccy Scimeca for Jay Bothroyd (65 mins).

Cardiff's most likely goal threat continued to look like Chris Burke. The wide man struck low and hard again from just outside the area on seventy-four minutes, preceding Cardiff's best chance of the game. Josh Magennis found himself free inside the Rangers penalty area after evading the challenge of Mikele Leigertwood, though the youngster mis-hit his effort when one on one with Cerny to the frustration of the 20,000 strong crowd.

Substitution: QPR - Allesandro Pellicori for Jay Simpson (76 mins).

Substitution: QPR - Patrick Agyemang for Rowan Vine (82 mins).

The remaining ten minutes of the game were uneventful. Rangers pumped their balls long towards Agyemang and denied City any possession in the centre of the park. It was a sorry afternoon for Dave Jones' men, one they will need to quickly put behind them.

Full Time: Cardiff City 0-2 QPR - Cardiff

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