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Tuesday, April 26, 2011

More Stories re QPR Behind the Scenes...Hull Reports/Comments Compilation..Fan Forum Flashback



Series of Great Photos
- Throughout the day, updates, comments and perspectives re QPR and football in general are posted and discussed on the QPR Report Messageboard...Also Follow: QPR REPORT ON TWITTER

- - Four Years Ago Today (April 26, 2007): QPR's Last Club Fan Forum (Report Flashback of that Meeting)

- QPR Face Mass Points Deduction...Warnock May Axed at End of Season (Three Tabloids Reporting this)

- "Inside the Mind of a Football Blogger"

- Five Year Flashback: Paladini on Playoffs...Waddock on Releasing Players


Meddling millionaires pose greatest threat to Rangers' continued rise

Warnock's bread-and-butter approach may be at risk, says Glenn Moore

Tuesday, 26 April 2011

When the millionaires arrived at Loftus Road in 2007 the expectation was that Bernie Ecclestone, Flavio Briatore and Lakshmi Mittal would fund a Roman Abramovich-style spending spree to return QPR to the Premier League. With the list of likely recruits headed by such luminaries as Zinedine Zidane and Luis Figo, Rangers fans dreamed of challenging their moneyed west London rivals instead of flirting with bankruptcy.

It did not quite work out like that. There were some exotic imports, but no one of the first rank. More significantly the club was ridden with instability as managers were hired, fired, or quit. Briatore, the F1 and clothing magnate, was strongly suspected of, at best, being behind the managerial carousel, at worst of trying to pick the team. Cash had been spent on bringing the corporate facilities upmarket, but at a price, with some sizeable ticket-price increases. The dream was, for QPR fans, turning sour.

Then in March 2010, with the Indian influence at the club growing, QPR hired Neil Warnock whose promotion bid at Crystal Palace had been derailed by administration. Warnock was the club's seventh manager in less than three years (not including five caretakers). Warnock inherited a squad drifting into relegation trouble and so heavily staffed with loanees the club would have been fined for fielding too many in his first game had not one of them, Marcus Bent, pointed this out to Warnock when the team-sheet went up. By the end of the season 37 players had been used in 46 league games.

Warnock steered QPR to mid-table safety then rebuilt the squad. All the loanees were sent back except Adel Taarabt, who was signed for £1.5m from Tottenham. Eight further players were signed including Tommy Smith and Rob Hulse for £1m fees. In addition Heidar Helguson returned from a loan at Watford and Kyle Walker was borrowed from Spurs. The total outlay was about £5m, akin to Middlesbrough's.

This XI has formed the bulk of Warnock's promotion-winning team. Hulse, restricted by injury, has begun only 12 matches but the rest have all started at least 20. Indeed, of 14 players who have started at least 20 matches, only three were not signed by Warnock.

The trio who have spent most time on the park are the men who best represent the manager on the pitch: Paddy Kenny, Clint Hill and Shaun Derry. All had played under Warnock before, Kenny at Sheffield United, Hill at Crystal Palace, Derry at both. They are what Warnock calls his "bread-and-butter players" and their hard-nosed experience has provided Rangers with a spine that had been absent. They provide the platform for Taarabt, the division's most talented player, to shine. Alejandro Faurlin, who came to wider notice when the club was charged with transfer irregularities, has also made a significant impact playing alongside Derry in a 4-2-3-1 formation.

Rangers have spent the entire season in the promotion places. Beginning the campaign with three straight victories in which they scored nine goals without reply, they were unbeaten until their 20th match. Having been briefly headed by Cardiff City in late autumn, they gradually pulled clear. Neither the loss of Jamie Mackie, whose early burst of goals had won him a Scotland cap, to a bad leg break in January, nor Walker's return to the top flight, discomfited them. Warnock loaned Wayne Routledge from Newcastle, who had bought him from Loftus Road a year earlier, and the winger provided timely impetus, linking well with Taarabt and scoring important goals.

Rangers hope to make Routledge's move permanent in what is likely to be the first of a raft of signings, assuming they are ultimately promoted. Warnock is likely to replace most of a back four which lacks pace, and is likely to be in the market for a new central striker as neither Helguson, 33, nor Hulse, 31, are likely to be able to do the front-running and goalscoring required in the top flight.

The summer's big issue will be what sort of players are signed. Warnock has mellowed enough to incorporate players like Taarabt, whose sloth would have seen him omitted in Warnock's younger days, but he generally prefers experienced British players who put in a shift.

Success appears to have rekindled Briatore's enthusiasm and there are signs he wishes to become more hands-on again (though no longer a shareholder, he is influential on football matters). That may well mean a desire for marquee signings, even a more famous manager – Briatore was quoted earlier this season saying he'd like to appoint Marcello Lippi.

It has not escaped the notice of QPR fans that success and stability have come with Briatore in the background. Their fate next season may depend on how the uncertainty about the club's ownership – Ecclestone has hinted at selling his 62 per cent stake – is resolved. Independent

Talksport/Michael Wade - Exclusive - Warnock dismisses speculation linking him with QPR exit
- Queens Park Rangers manager Neil Warnock has brushed off speculation that he is set to be replaced as manager of the club.
- Warnock has led Rangers to the brink of promotion to the Premier League but stories in some papers over the weekend claimed he may be sacked in order for former Italy and Juventus boss Marcello Lippi to take over.
- But Warnock told talkSPORT he expects there to be speculation around the club as they are doing so well.
- Speaking to Call Collymore he said: “I absolutely love it [at QPR]. Flavio [Briatore] rang me today and said ‘I have not spoken to anybody, I promise you’.
- “But you’re going to get things like that. It’s like the hearing for Alejandro Faurlin. You’re going to get tabloids that never let facts get in the way of a good story.”
- Warnock also spoke of his disappointment that Rangers had been unable to seal promotion against Hull.
- Norwich’s dramatic late win against Derby leaves QPR waiting for the away game against Watford on Saturday for their chance to seal their fate and Warnock admitted: “I wanted to have a couple of games enjoying myself and getting on with things.
- “But it wasn’t to be and that’s the Championship. There’s no easy game and you can’t ever take your foot off the pedal.”
- “It’s another point on the way. It’s a nice position to be in but I am disappointed but that’s professionalism. I’m always disappointed when we don’t win.” TALKSPORT

MAIL/Christian Sylt - Formula One boss Ecclestone puts £100m price tag on QPR

Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone indicated he would consider selling his West London football team Queens Park Rangers with a £100m price tag.

Suggestions he may pull out of QPR come as the 80-year-old hinted at the weekend he may retire from his role at F1 if Rupert Murdoch’s media empire takes control.

However, the motor racing tycoon admitted his ability to sell depends on former shareholder Flavio Briatore.

Ecclestone has a 62pc stake in QPR after buying out Briatore in December last year but says at the time of that deal the Italian got an option to take back the stake if he were to sell.
F1 supremo boss Bernie Ecclestone

Major shareholder: Bernie Ecclestone has a 62pc stake in the west London club

Last month it was reported that a group of American and Asian businessmen want to buy out Ecclestone and the club said in a statement that it ‘has entered into preliminary discussions, which may or may not result in an offer being made.’

However, Ecclestone says that Briatore holds the keys to a sale.

‘I don’t have any choice staying in or going out,’ says Ecclestone adding ‘Flavio would probably be the one to sell if anybody’.

‘It is dependent on Flavio.’ He adds that ‘if somebody bought that team today it would be a very good punt. It is probably worth £100m.’

QPR is aiming for a return to the Premier League for the first time since 1996. However, its performance is not thanks to a cash injection from Ecclestone, who has made an estimated £2.4bn from F1.

QPR made an £18.8m after-tax loss in 2008-09 when it finished 11th in the division and then lost another £13.7m last year when it finished 13th.

Ecclestone says ‘you see a lot of these clubs today that are nowhere as high in the league as we are, playing people that have fallen from the top and beating them so there is no need to spend these fortunes.’

Ecclestone at the weekend hinted he is ready to quit as boss of F1 if Rupert Murdoch’s media empire succeeds in a bid to take control of the sport.

Ecclestone, who has previously dismissed the idea of retirement, said in an interview: ‘I’m old enough to get a pension, so I don’t have to get a job. I’d have to be sure the people (who end up owning F1) are people I would like to work with and whether they would want to work with me.’

Murdoch’s News Corporation is reported to have held early talks with Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim and at least one of the sport’s big car manufacturers about forming a consortium to acquire control.
- Private equity firm CVC is said to be conducting a strategic review and could sell. Daily Mail


- Video: Warnock Still Confident

- Series of Great Photos

Posted on: Mon 25 Apr 2011

Neil Warnock refused to be too downbeat, despite seeing his QPR side draw 1-1 with Hull City - a result that denied them promotion to the Premier League.

Speaking exclusively to www.qpr.co.uk, Warnock said: "I'm disappointed not to have tied the Championship up.

"I thought that we had more than enough opportunities to kill the game off.

"To concede a goal like we did from Paddy Kenny's kick is not acceptable at any level.

"That's what makes the Championship so difficult. There's never an easy match.

"But I can't complain. My players have been brilliant."

He added: "We're six points clear of third with two games to go and 13 goals better off - you couldn't ask for more than that at the start of the season.

"We've done all this in 13 months - it's fantastic.

"I think the fans know the goal difference is crucial - unless we do something that we haven't done in a while.

"It's a healthy position to be in.

"It makes the Watford game all the more appetising."

QPR Official Site
QPR put themselves on the verge of the Premier League thanks to 1-1 draw with Hull City at Loftus Road.
The R's share of the spoils with the Tigers means that Rangers are now six points clear of Cardiff City in third place with only six left to play for, with a superior goal difference meaning that promotion is now firmly on the cards for Neil Warnock's charges.

Wayne Routledge put QPR into the lead in the ninth minute, after latching on to Adel Taarabt's through ball and rifling home with a neat finish.

But the Tigers drew level in 81st minute, meaning that Rangers must wait until their trip to Vicarage Road - the home of local neighbours Watford - next Saturday to rubber-stamp a return to the top flight.

David Amoo controlled a ball from deep on the edge of the box, before making no mistake with a bullet effort that left Paddy Kenny with no chance.

Alejandro Faurlin almost won it for the R's in the dying minutes, only to see his stunning effort from a free-kick force an equally magnificent save from Matt Duke.

Fitz Hall replaced Matt Connolly in only one change for the R's from their 2-2 draw at Cardiff City on Saturday lunchtime, in a 4-2-3-1 formation.

Kenny was in goal for QPR, behind Bradley Orr, Hall, Kaspars Gorkss and Clint Hill in defence.

Shaun Derry and Faurlin were deployed just in front of the back four, while Routledge, Taarabt and Tommy Smith were in attacking midfield.

Heidar Helguson led the Rangers line in attack.

The scenes prior to kick-off were something to behold in W12, with R's fans in fine voice to welcome their team on to the field.

It was the visitors who were to have the first shot in anger, with Kenny forced into a smart save with his feet to keep the Tigers at bay early on.

Former QPR loanee Jay Simpson picked up possession midway into the R's half and, when he slid a clever through pass into Matty Fryatt, the Hull front-man took a touch before firing an effort straight at Kenny from 10-yards out.

Rangers soon went close themselves. After Taarabt was initially felled for a free-kick out wide on the right, the Moroccan ace dusted himself down to send over a teasing centre that was met by Helguson, whose header whistled inches over the crossbar from close range.

But the R's weren't to spurn their next opportunity and, after just nine minutes, this partisan Loftus Road crowd were treated to their first goal of the afternoon.

Taarabt played the architect, receiving possession on half way before finding the more advanced Routledge with a perfectly-weighted pass.

One-on-one with the last defender, the diminutive wide-man used his blistering pace to burst through on goal and smash the ball home past the onrushing Duke from 16-yards out.

The R's almost doubled their lead on 20 minutes when Hall's long throw was met by Helguson, who rose highest to power a header at goal that forced a superb save from Duke, who reacted well to tip the ball over the bar.

QPR were now firmly in control, with only a goal-line clearance preventing the R's from extending their lead in the 30th minute.

Taarabt's free-kick from the right was nodded across goal by Helguson at the back post and, when Gorkss reacted first to nod an effort on target, Richard Garcia was on the line to deflect the ball clear.

Rangers took time to get going after the interval but did go close on 56 minutes - Taarabt's free-kick going just past the right-hand upright, after Helguson was tripped 20 yards from goal.

But Hull were far from spectators in the second period. Indeed, substitute Aaron Mclean was unlucky not to do better with his effort, after seeing his header from Garcia cross go just wide of the bottom left-hand post.

Moments later, the Tigers were again on the attack.

Fryatt latched on to a pass from deep that looped over the top of the QPR defence and, as the former Leicester City striker looked to steal in on goal, Hall was on hand with a sweeping low tackle to clear the ball to safety.

Taarabt missed a glorious chance to put Rangers out of touch on 70 minutes.

The R's playmaker picked up possession just into the QPR half after Derry's sliding intervention, before driving past his marker to smash a left-footed effort into the side netting.

Hull grabbed a share of the spoils in the 81st minute.

Substitute Amoo controlled a ball from deep, before powering an effort past Kenny and into the back of the net from 18-yards out.

Faurlin almost won it for the R's late on but for a tremendous save from Duke, who tipped the Argentine midfield man's curling free-kick onto the post and out of play.

QPR: Kenny, Orr, Hill, Derry, Hall, Taarabt, Helguson (Agyemang 77), Faurlin, Gorkss, Routledge, Smith (Ephraim 68).

Subs: Cerny, Buzsaky, Connolly, Hulse, Shittu.

Goals: Routledge (9)

Hull City: Duke, Dawson, Hobbs, Garcia, Harper, Fryatt, Cairney (Mclean 46), Chester, Simpson (Amoo 71), Gerrard, Evans (Akpan 12).

Subs: Oxley, Devitt, Solano, Belaid.

Goals: Amoo (81)

Bookings: Dawson (49), Garcia (56)

Referee: Mr C H Webster

Attendance: 17,399 (1109)

Yann Tear/Gazette - Party time as QPR see an end to their 15-year exile
IN THE end, it was not exactly a vintage performance, but you would be hard pressed to find anyone in the Loft End who gives a fig.

Rangers are up on the basis that their 13-goal advantage over third-placed Cardiff cannot be beaten. Only a few pedants might disagree and realistically, only the suits in a darkened courtroom can now banish the joyous feeling of promotion achieved at a sunkissed Loftus Road.

The fans massed on the pitch at the final whistle to acclaim their heroes were in no mood to allow a little technicality get in the way of a big knees-up.

Some of the gloss was taken off the occasion for home fans by an 82nd minute goal from Hull sub David Amoo which cancelled out Wayne Routledge's ninth minute opener.

But the bigger picture sees Neil Warnock's men back to a land last frequented by the club 15 years ago – and without recourse to anything so tawdry as play-offs.

It's going to be a summer of fantasy for fans as they savour the June fixture list and watch the recruitment of players in preparation for August in the Premier League.

Rangers were caught out by a long ball over the top that Amoo gleefully took advantage of, but most of the match was played out against a backdrop of a one goal lead for the home side.

Adel Taarabt was catalyst rather than scorer this time, but the same spacial awareness that brought him two goals at Cardiff on Saturday was on show again as his smart pass infield allowed Routledge (pictured) to take possession, scamper on past a flailing Anthony Gerrard and crash home a rising shot past keeper Matt Duke.

It was a liberating moment for players and fans alike and not even news that Cardiff were winning at Preston seemed likely to be relevant.

Taarabt was in showboating mood almost immediately and eager to rattle off his full repertoire of tricks and audaciousness.

He thought nothing of fizzing a free-kick directly at goal from 40 yards and defenders were soon picking up the signal to get forward and do their bit on this historic day.

Heidar Helguson may have missed a late opportunity to hog the glory all for himself in Cardiff, but he looked intent on making up for that with many a clever flick of the head to create panic in the Tigers' ranks.

He almost caught out Duke with a touch on from a long throw by Hall in the first half that the Hull stopper did well to tip over.

City, still chasing a play-off place at the outset almost stole an early lead when Matty Fryatt's low shot cannoned into the legs of the ever-alert Paddy Kenny and they worked their way back into the match after the break.

But give or take the odd mini opening, Rangers did not have too many alarming moments to disturb their afternoon until that late goal. But it was too little, too late to spoil the party.

Alejandro Faurlin's late free-kick almost brought a late winner by the way - but for a fine save from Duke. How fitting if the man at the centre of the FA charges had applied the coup de grace." Ealing Gazette

PRESS ASSOCIATION - QPR party put on hold
A late equaliser from Hull's on-loan forward David Amoo and an even later winner by Simeon Jackson for Norwich spoiled QPR's promotion party at Loftus Road.

A 1-1 draw for Rangers looked like being enough to secure a return to the Barclays Premier League - pending a Football Association ruling regarding the third-party ownership of Alejandro Faurlin - for the first time since 1996 as Norwich were being held 2-2 by Derby.

Winger Wayne Routledge had given the hosts a ninth-minute lead but Amoo, on loan from Liverpool, struck in the 81st minute. However, Jackson completed his hat-trick in the sixth-minute of added time as Norwich beat Derby 3-2 to delay celebrations for Neil Warnock's table-toppers.

But there was despair at the other end of the table as Preston were relegated to League One as a result of Crystal Palace's win at home to Leeds.

Neil Danns' second minute goal at Selhurst Park, coupled with Preston's defeat, sent Phil Brown's side down.

The goal for Danns - who was sent off late on for a second bookable offence - also made it likely the Eagles will be safe for another season as both Sheffield United and Sc**thorpe are six points adrift, both with inferior goal difference, with two matches remaining.

The Blades appear to at least be going down fighting as they battled back from 2-0 down to beat Reading 3-2.

Noel Hunt and Hal Robson-Kanu had put the hosts into a comfortable lead but Darius Henderson scored twice - his first goals of the season - either side of Lee Williamson's strike to give them victory.

Sc**thorpe's 2-1 defeat at home to Millwall also all-but confirmed their relegation as Michael O'Connor's late penalty was academic after two from John Marquis either side of half-time.

The late drama at Carrow Road means Norwich remain second behind QPR but just a point ahead of Cardiff. Jackson twice put his side ahead only for Steve Davies and Alberto Bueno to peg back their hosts but the Canaries forward had the final say. Press Association


QPR 1 - 1 Hull Loftus Road desperately wanted to see QPR guarantee a Premier League return Queens Park Rangers remain poised to return to the Premier League despite having to put their promotion party on ice after Hull grabbed a late draw.

QPR looked set to seal the Championship title but Hull's equaliser, and a Norwich win against Derby, means they need a point to be sure of going up.

Third-placed Cardiff could still catch leaders QPR, but the west Londoners have a greater goal difference by 13.

Wayne Routledge hit the early opener but David Amoo volleyed in for Hull.

Neil Warnock's team, who have led the Championship virtually all season, are making hard work of ending their 15-year absence from the top flight.

They did not come out for a lap of honour in the sun having failed to seal the victory they craved - which would have guaranteed the title - in front of their expectant home fans.

Supporters still streamed on to the pitch at full-time celebrating what they thought was certain promotion.

But, seconds later, news filtered through that Simeon Jackson had nicked a late winner for Norwich, meaning that QPR are still not technically promoted - although there remains a strong likelihood it will happen.

Nor are Rangers certain to be champions, with Norwich five points behind them with two matches left to play.

Amoo's late equaliser means QPR must wait to celebrate liekly promotion The late drama was a brutally stark contrast to what felt like a Bank Holiday stroll for a team continually inspired by the talent of playmaker Adel Taarabt.

Hull striker Matty Fryatt could have made more of free space in the area after two minutes as Paddy Kenny saved with his right foot, but QPR had more cutting edge in the final third.

Richard Garcia's sharp challenge on Taarabt by the corner flag meant the gifted Moroccan could whip a free-kick over, from which Heidar Helguson headed just over.

But nine minutes in, a perceptive square pass from Taarabt freed Routledge near the half-way line.

With Hull's defensive unit caught napping too far forward, Routledge sped away from Jack Hobbs and Anthony Gerrard to crack the ball past Matt Duke upon reaching the penalty area to send Loftus Road wild.

Soon after, in-form Hull midfielder Corry Evans - brother of Manchester United's Jonny - was replaced by Hope Akpan and, flushed with confidence, the hosts knocked the ball around with aplomb.

Yet their next good chance came from a long throw-in slung into the box, from which another Helguson header had Duke tipping the dipping ball over his bar.

Routledge, a willing accomplice for Taarabt's invention, swung in a dangerous bouncing cross on the half-hour - but it flummoxed his own slow-to-react team-mates, as well as the visitor's defence.

A breathtaking piece of juggling skill from Taarabt, who will be determined to prove he can turn it on in the top-flight having failed to establish himself at Tottenham previously, preceded his audacious waist-high free-kick from 40 yards which whistled past the post.

With Hull struggling to keep hold of the ball, Tommy Smith set up a blocked Fitz Hall effort while Shaun Derry - an effective screen for the home defence - nearly freed Helguson in bizarre fashion with a 30-yard headed through-ball.

Two injuries alarms either side of half-time proved, thankfully, to be nothing more than brief scares.

QPR goalkeeper Kenny came to gather a short cross but, despite landing awkwardly on his neck after somersaulting in the air, the former Sheffield United man was able to continue.

And so was second-half substitute Aaron Mclean, a striker on for midfielder Tom Crainey, after Derry accidentally stood heavily on his ankle just 30 seconds after the restart.

With a more ambitious mindset, and altered line-up to match, Hull put QPR under more pressure in the middle of the park, but goalmouth action was distinctly lacking - a long-range Taarabt free-kick sailing over the bar after 55 minutes.

Click to play
QPR's promotion party ruined by late Norwich goal
Hall, however, produced an alert sliding block in the penalty area when Fryatt muscled his way through to shoot in the 62nd minute.

Fans favourite Taarabt was inches from producing a fitting goal for himself with 20 minutes remaining but, after cleverly spinning away from a defender on the half-way line to accelerate towards goal, his left-foot shot from 15 yards just evaded the top corner.

With Hull aware that they needed at least a point to keep their own slim play-off hopes alive, the visitors pushed harder - and hit a shock equaliser with nine minutes left to play.

Substitube Amoo - a striker on loan from Liverpool - sprang the offside trap before smashing the ball high past Kenny after letting it drop over his shoulder from a clever lofted pass.

QPR substitute Patrick Agyemang did have a late chance to hit what would have been a glorious winner, but he overhit a lob when well placed to score.


Late goal puts QPR promotion party on hold

LONDON (Reuters) - Queens Park Rangers fans invaded their Loftus Road pitch on Monday but had to put celebrations on hold when a late goal in another game meant their promotion to the Premier League was not quite confirmed.

The London side were seconds away from securing a return to the English top flight for the first time in 15 years thanks to a 1-1 draw at home to Hull City before fellow promotion contenders Norwich City struck late to beat Derby County 3-2.

The results left QPR top of the Championship (second division) with 85 points, five ahead of Norwich in the second automatic promotion slot and six ahead of third-placed Cardiff City with two games to play.

The players had been gearing up to celebrate promotion and fans had run on to the pitch to join in but they were stopped in their tracks by news of Norwich's stoppage-time goal and manager Neil Warnock was left shaking his head.

A vastly superior goal difference and the fact they need only one more point means QPR's promotion is likely to be a mere formality and they will be keen to seal the deal next weekend when they visit Watford.

The west London club were founder members of the Premier League in 1992 but were relegated in 1996.

A dark cloud hovers above them as next month a Football Association regulatory commission will rule on seven charges against the club relating to the transfer and contract renewal of Argentine midfielder Alejandro Faurlin.

If found guilty after the May 3 hearing, they could face a points deduction. QPR have denied all the charges against them.

(Writing by Sonia Oxley; Editing by Ed Osmond ; To comment on this story: sportsfeedback@thomsonreuters.com)


Tigers Fight Back At QPR

Hull City remain unbeaten on the road since September after claiming an impressive point at League leaders QPR. Wayne Routledge gave the home team an early lead, finishing well after eight minutes, though Nigel Pearson's side gained in confidence as the match wore on, and their second-half play was rewarded with ten minutes to go as substitute David Amoo finished emphatically past Paddy Kenny.

Injuries to Vito Mannone, Liam Rosenior and Robert Koren in last Saturday's match against Middlesbrough forced manager Nigel Pearson into three changes to the starting line-up as Matt Duke, James Harper and Tom Cairney all came into the side. There was also a place on the bench for teenage midfielder Hope Akpan.

QPR started the match knowing that three points would secure their place in the top-flight, and there was a real sense of expectancy around Lofus Road prior to kick-off. It was City that began the brighter of the two though, having the first chance of the match less than two minutes in as Matty Fryatt forced Paddy Kenny into a stop after cutting in from the right.

On seven minutes Ranger's had their first meaningful chance as Helguson headed narrowly over from an Adel Taarabt free-kick. Only a minute later they made no mistake as Wayne Routledge was sent clean through and buried the ball past the helpless Matt Duke.

Things quickly went from bad to worse for Nigel Pearson's side, as Corry Evans limped off after only 11 minutes to be replaced by debutant Hope Akpan.

Helguson was close to extending QPR's lead on 19 minutes, this time finding the target with his header to force Matt Duke into a smart reaction save.

The Tigers had to wait until the 25th minute for their second attempt on goal as Fryatt teed up Simpson for a long-range effort that curled harmlessly wide of the post.

The home team were looking threatening from set-pieces, and on 31 minutes a corner resulted in more nervy moments as Dawson eventually cleared off the line after a scramble in the six-yard area.

On 40 minutes Ranger's had an injury concern of their own as keeper Paddy Kenny fell awkwardly after jumping through a crowd of players to collect a cross. The former Sheffield United stopper underwent lengthy treatment on the field of play before gingerly returning to his feet. That was the last noteworty incident of the first-half, as QPR left the pitch relatively comfortable in their 1-0 lead.

Half-time: QPR 1 HULL CITY 0

In response to the first half showing Nigel Pearson made a substitution during the break as Tom Cairney was replaced by Aaron Mclean. less than a minute after coming on, the striker landed awkardly, though he was able to return to action after undergoing a spell of treatment.

On 48 minutes City skipper Andy Dawson was shown the first yellow card of the afternoon following a challenge on Adel Taarabt. A second booking went the way of Richard Garcia seven minutes later, as he was pulled up following a challenge on Helguson on the edge of the area. Taarabt curled a shot narrowly over the top pf the crossbar from the resulting set-piece.

The Tigers' resilience away from home began to shine through, as after enjoying a spell of possession Matty Fratt connected with a James Chester cross on 61 minutes, though his effort drifted wide of the mark. The striker had an even better chance on 65 minutes, as after latching on to a ball over the top from James Harper, it took the outstretched leg of Fitz Hall to deny him.

Niel Warnock made his first substitution of the match on 67 minutes as forward Tommy Smith was replaced by Hogan Ephraim.

On 69 minutes the R's had a glorious chance to make it 2-0 only two minutes later as after a skillfull turn in the centre circle Taarabt raced through on goal only to smash his effort wide of the target.

Nigel Pearson made his third and final substitution after 70 minutes as Jay Simpson came off to be replaced by David Amoo. Amoo slotted into the left-side of midfield, as Maclean pushed on to partner Matty Fryatt.

Five minutes later, Warnock responded with a change of his own, as Helguson left the pitch to be replaced by Patrick Agyemang.

With ten minutes to go, it was the Tigers who were doing all the pressing, and they were duly rewarded with an equaliser as substitute David Amoo latched onto a lofted ball over the top before finishing in emphatic style.

The Tigers' tails were clearly up as on 82 minutes Jack Hobbs shot wide from long range. The game was poised for an exciting final few minutes with both teams pressing for the winner.

On 86 minutes Agyemang had his first effort on goal, though his lofted shot cleared the cross-bar.

Into time added on the R's had a golden chance to clinch all three points with a free kick just right of centre. Faurlin took the set-piece only to be denied by a spectacular save by Matt Duke.

Full time: QPR 1 Hull City 0

Tigers: Matt Duke, James Chester, Jack Hobbs, Anthony Gerrard, Andy Dawson, Richard Garcia, Corry Evans (Akpan 11), James Harper, Tom Cairney(Aaron Mclean 46), Jay Simpson, Matty Fryatt.

Subs: Mark Oxley, Jamie Devitt, Nolberto Solano, David Amoo, Aaron Mclean, Tijani Belaid, Hope Akpan.

QPR: Paddy Kenny, Bradley Orr, Clint Hill, Shaun Derry, Fitz Hall, Adel Taarabt, Heidar Helguson, Alejandro Faurlin, Kaspar Gorkss, Wayne Routledge, Tommy Smith (Ephraim 67).

Subs: Radek Cerny, Akos Buzsaky, Matthew Connolly, Patrick Agyemang, Rob Hulse, Hogan Ephraim, Danny Shittu.

Referee: Mr C H Webster.

Attendance: 17399 (1109)


- Ex-QPR's Mel Johnson Joins Liverpool Scouting Team

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