Lofty Heights... 'Ohhh Bobby Zamooooora!!!'

A look at Queens Park Rangers F.C. through the eyes of the fans - follow us on twitter @loftyheights70, @LoftyQPR and @qprleeroy

Monday, December 28, 2009

Stead-y Jon breaks Paul's Hart

Rangers headed into their second game in three days as the busy festive period continues to entertain all football lovers. Today gave us the opportunity to go to Ipswich and pinch three points in East Anglia.

For the first time this season, and the first time in quite some time, there was no representation from the Lofty Heights crew so a full match analysis and our frank opinions will be slightly less accurate as I lay here listening to the match on the radio trying to write this as it happens. Reasons for us boycotting the fixture were the price of todays ticket, £33 for a championship game is too much especially at this time of year, mind you we do charge £30 don't we? Ah well I'm sure away fans moan at us for being money grabbers as well.

Paul Hart made two changes from the battling victory over Bristol City. Damion Stewart and Adel Taarabt returned to the starting line up in the the place of Fitz Hall and Alejandro Faurlin.


The game started frantically with both teams looking to break quickly but it was Ipswich that dealt the first blow of the afternoon. Shortly after a Rangers attack was broken down it was Ipswich that attacked Ramage down the Rangers right and when the cross came over Jon Walters was on hand to tuck the ball into the back of the net and give Rangers the worst possible start.
After the goal Ipswich dominated proceedings and had the Rangers defence in all sorts of trouble and looking very shaky. Damion Stewart managed to get back and clear an effort off the line and from the resulting corner former R's defender Damien Delaney came very close to putting the home side 2-0 up as his effort flashed over the bar.
Finally with 25 minutes on the clock Rangers started to get themselves in the game and were guilty of two fantastic chances, both of which fell to Taarabt, the second chance being a header from a full four yards out!
For the remainder of the half Rangers slowly came more into the game and started to stifle out the Ipswich attacking threat whilst creating chances albeit none of them clear cut. Taarabt was a constant thorn in the Ipswich and Rangers sides as his trickery was being superb but was always ending the end product. Gorkss in the R's defence was by and far the best performer and was highly praised for his efforts as the half came to a close.

Half time for me was slightly warmer than usual and was treated to an ice cold pint of water and a delightful ham sandwitch to keep me going. A few text updates were sent to members of the Lofty Heights crew that had been dragged out to do other menial tasks.

Rangers started off the second half the better of the two sides and retained most of the possession without creating any telling chances. From hearing many of the commentators comments it sounded as if Adel Taarabt was having another one of those frustrating games and was hogging the ball more often than not instead of playing in players in space, it happened quite a few times and they just laughed every time he lost possession.
As always the pressure didnt tell and the R's were punished for it. Jon Stead picked the ball up and curled a tidy effort around Cerny into the back of the net to put Ipswich well and truly in the driving seat.
I could faintly hear the chants of "U should've kept Magilton" as Akos Buzsaky was taken off shortly after that second Ipswich goal.
Things really didnt get any better and I must admit I started to switch off and missed the build up to the third goal, I can tell you that Jon Stead scored it though, he just loves playing against us doesn't he!! Ipswich fans continued their goading by singing "You're getting sacked in the morning....." With our lot who knows!!


Well it really did sound as if Rangers were not at the races today. The attacking options were limited and once again Mr Taarabt seemingly had a very selfish game. Our defence last year was one of the best in the league last year and yet they are atruglling to keep things tight, only three clean sheets this season tells its story! What does Paul Hart do to sort out an out of sorts Rangers?? Only time will tell.

Ipswich Town: Lee-Barrett, Delaney, McAuley, Leadbitter, Norris (Colback 54), Peters, Stead, Walters, John (Wickham 75), Rosenior, Edwards (Garvan 54).

Subs not used: Bruce, Counago, McLoughlin, Brown.

Goals: Walters (4), Stead (63 & 78)

QPR: Cerny, Ramage, Stewart, Leigertwood, Routledge, Buzsaky (Agyemang 66), Gorkss, Watson, Williams, Simpson, Taarabt (Balanta 78).

Subs not used: Hall, Connolly, Faurlin, Taylor, Borrowdale.

Referee: Mr S Tanner

Attendance: 25, 340

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Rangers win despite negative ending

Today the traditional Boxing Day fixture returned to Loftus Road for the first time in quite a few years as QPR hosted Bristol City.

The Lofty Heights crew was at near full strength today as Lofty, PK, Corp, Jenson, Justin and myself gathered outside the Springbok in the blistering sunshine(we wish!) in W12. After a swift halves we made our way into the ground to grab a traditional yorkshire wrap and a pie before taking our seats.

Paul Hart made three changes from last weekend’s draw against Sheffield United, one of which was forced. Damion Stewart was forced to sit out after receiving his 5th booking of the season against United, his replacement was Fitz Hall. Adel Taarabt and Patrick Agyemang dropped to the bench as Alejandro Faurlin and Akos Buzsaky returned to the starting line up.


The opening exchanges were pretty tight and the visitors created the better chances with Gavin Williams, Danny Haynes and Skuse having efforts at goal saved by Cerny and blocked.
Having been the lesser creative of the two teams in the opening exchanges Rangers soon made the all important breakthrough. Ben Watson’s corner was cleared to the edge of the box and was picked up by Fitz Hall, his lofted ball to the back post somehow found Jay Simpson and he controlled the ball before firing across the keeper into the right hand corner.
Rangers grew in confidence from the goal and began to attack Bristol City with a little more conviction.
Tommy Williams’ run and fantastic cross from the left hand side was missing one piece of the jigsaw, a finishing touch, otherwise Rangers would’ve been 2-0 up and coasting into half time. However the R’s weren’t to be denied of the cushion.
Leigertwood picked the ball up from a throw in and beat his man before letting rip with a left foot drive that just flew into the back of the net and gave Rangers a two goal lead. To be quite honest the two goal lead kind of flattered us as in my opinion we were not that much better than them, we were just defensively better and had Hall and Gorkss playing excellently at the back.


Half time came upon us and despite us being two goals to the good the mood wasn’t as upbeat as it usually would be, maybe it was because there was a hangover or two amongst a few of us but the football on display was hardly inspiring if I’m perfectly honest. Half time seemed to fly by and before we knew it we were back in our seats hoping the second half would go by as quickly as the interval.

Rangers were on the front foot at the start of the second half and when Routledge slid Simpson through on goal with his marker putting pressure on him, he elected to shoot early and placed his effort wide when maybe one more touch to compose himself and would’ve helped more and at least worked the Bristol City keeper.
Minutes later Bristol City were back in the game and what a goal it was.
Maynard had his back to goal on the 18 yard box as he was fed the ball by one of his team mates, he held off two defenders as he flicked the ball up and turned to lash in an unstoppable shot for what will be a contender for goal of the season. Numerous Rangers fans around the ground graciously applauded the genius of the goal and it was good to see football fans appreciate something like that.
Rangers responded to the goal positively as Jay Simpson attacked the left hand side a swung over a delightful cross for the shortest man on the pitch, Wayne Routledge, and he flung himself at the ball and was unable to get a decent head on the ball and the opportunity went begging.
Further attacks on the Bristol City came in the form of substitute Patrick Agyemang when he replaced Faurlin on 63 minutes as Rangers pressed for the all important third goal.
As Rangers were pressing more and more Bristol city started to slowly take advantage of the cracks appearing in the Rangers midfield.
A last minute intervention by Fitz Hall stopped Maynard grabbing the equalizer for the Robins as they became more and more dangerous. Hall was then at fault for some casual defending letting in Clarkson would smashed his effort into the side netting when he really should’ve scored.
Then came a moment that many that bought great displeasure to the Rangers faithful. Buzsaky and Simpson came off and were replaced by Connolly and Borrowdale. Connolly took his place just in front of the back four and Borrowdale looked to be on the left wing but we effectively had 6 defenders and two defensive midfielders on the pitch for the final ten minutes of the game. Ranger’s players also seemed to be under instruction to run the ball into the corners and waste time........ with 10 minutes to go and when we were in a position where we looked more than capable of scoring a third and this tactic was employed. I’ve never known a home team to do this and I think the reaction of a fair few Rangers fans summed it up really as chants of “we’re supposed to be at home” and there was even a chorus of boos that rung out pretty loudly as the time ticked down. Rangers were inviting the pressure onto them and looking to counter attack but only into the corner and with no attacking intention, you could only fear what would’ve happened had Bristol City snatched an equalizer, as it was the 3 points stayed in W12.

Well at the end of the day we won the three points but unfortunately many of the fans will go away remembering the final 10 minutes of the game when really we should be happy that we beat a team that is going to rival us in the hunt for a play-off place. I hope what we witnessed today is not the start of a negative tactics game that we are going to employ in the final 5-10 minutes of game, especially when we are at home. My belief is that the R’s fans pay bloody good money to come through the turnstiles and to be subjected to that when really we were strong enough to hold on without doing that. We won nonetheless so my rant is over.

Today’s Man of the Match was a unanimous vote between us all and has been awarded to Kaspers Gorkss for his sterling performance at the back and has really excelled in the past three games for the R’s. Tommy Williams and Mikele Leigertwood also turned in good performances but were overshadowed by the big Latvian.

QPR: Cerny, Ramage, Hall, Leigertwood, Routledge, Buzsaky (Connolly 83), Gorkss, Watson, Faurlin (Agyemang 63), Williams, Simpson (Borrowdale 83).

Subs not used: Taylor, Pellicori, Balanta, Taarabt.

Goals: Simpson (32), Leigertwood (40)

Bristol City: Gerken, Orr, McAllister, Fontaine, Carey, Maynard, Hartley, Skuse, Williams (Sno 70), Haynes (Sproule 83), Saborio (Clarkson 71).

Subs not used:
Henderson, Elliott, Edwards, Nyatanga.

Goals: Maynard (57)

Bookings: Haynes, Maynard, Sno

Attendance: 13, 534

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Blunt Rangers lack cutting edge.

Today we witnessed the opening game of the reign of Rangers new dynamic duo of Paul Hart and Mick Harford, the opponents Sheffield United.

Jenson returned from his holiday in Cypress and joined Lofty, California Hoop, Sam and myself in the stands on what was a cold afternoon in W12.

Paul Hart made no changes from the team that courageously battled to the draw at West Brom on Monday night. Angelo Balanta returned to the bench after being ruled out by injury since the start of the season.

Rangers got off to the perfect start with a goal in the opening 90 seconds.
Watson's inswinging corner was only cleared as far as skipper Mikele Leigertwood and his shot was deflected as it flew goalwards and buried itself in the bottom right corner of the Blades goal.
The lead didnt last long as five minutes later the scores were level. Ben Watson was guilty of giving the ball away cheaply in the right corner of the R's defence and quicker than you could moan about it the ball ended up in the back of the net. Kallio centred his cross into the path of Richard Cresswell and he managed to scramble the ball into the back of Cerny's goal.
Sheffield United put in a typical battling performance and really managed to slow the tempo of the game down and really stifle the Rangers attack. The remaining 80 minutes of the game were played between to battling sides that were playing a game of chess and were unable to break each other down.
Two very strong penalty shouts were somehow waved away during the second half, firstly it was Jay Simpson who was about to pull the trigger and he was swept off his feet and bundled to the floor, it looked stonewall but apparently not. The secind shout was when Kaspers Gorkss was bundled to the floor and it was quite clear for both the ref and linesman to see but yet again the shout for a penalty by the R's were waved away once again.
In the final moments of the game and with Rangers looking to press for the all important winner there was one more chance it the game and it fell to the R's. A delightful cross from the right found Ben Watson's head and it looked as if it was destined to fly into the top corner but agonisingly we all witnessed the ball smack the bar and into safety.


As ever Kevin Blackwell's Blades came in with a game plan to close down the R's and not allow the Rangers dangermen any space to create anything and really suffocated the midfield. A draw is a fair result but it would've just been nice to see Rangers change their game plan and try something different when their backs were against the wall.

Todays Man of the Match is awarded to Tommy Williams for some very good defending and also the attacking presence he bought to the R's left hand side and floated in a number of great crosses that caused problems in the Blades defence.

I'd like to apologise now for the lateness of this report today. I have been suffering with a bout of food poisoning thoughtout the day and has hindered my progress in writing all day.

Finally Myself and Lofty would like to thank you for your support that you give us in our efforts on here and we'd like to wish u a very merry christmas and a superb new year!


Thursday, December 17, 2009

Welcome Paul Hart and Mick Harford.

Hot on the heels of the departure of management duo Jim Magilton and John Gorman comes the announcement of their replacements, Paul Hart and Mick Harford. The new duo have been signed up until the sign of the season.


Paul Hart recently departed Portsmouth after a poor start to the season. However last season after Tony Adams left Fratton Park with the club in a precarious position it was Hart that helped the club to pull clear of relegation trouble and preserve the clubs Premier League status.
Hart has also had managerial spells with Chesterfield, Nottingham forest, Barnsley and Rushden and Diamonds which were not highly successful. However Hart was in charge of youth development at Leeds from the early 90's which produced the youth players which were highly influencial in Leeds rise to challenging for the Premiership and Champions League honours in 2000-2001.


Mick Harford returns to Rangers having been assistant manager under John Gregory's reign and when Gregory departed he was in caretaker charge and left the club shortly after Luigi De Canio's appointment as manager.
Harford became Luton's manager in January 2008 for the rest of the season before committing to The Hatters for the following season despite the club having a 30 point deduction put upon them. Harford's men went on to win the Football League Trophy against Scunthorpe but were not able to overturn the 30 point deduction and were subsequently relegated to the Blue Square Premier. After a poor start to the season Harford was relieved of his duties in October in this year.

I hope you will join us here at Lofty Heights in welcoming the duo and wish them luck......

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Another one bites the dust.

Tonight we heard the inevitable news that the club have parted company with Jim Magilton and John Gorman by mutual consent.


Last Monday after the poor performance at Watford there were claims of an apparent headbutt to Akos Buzsaky in a heated dressing room exchange, which has been subsequently denied by both Magilton and Gorman. Wedsnesday last week Magilton was suspended pending an internal investigation on the events. Both John Gorman and Keith Ryan backed the manager and refused to work until Magilton was brought back to the helm. A players meeting with Gorman and Director of football Gianni Paladini was apparently staged, in which the plyers gave a vote of no confidence to Magilton's reign continuing. Steve Gallen and Marc Bircham were put in temporary charge for Monday nights game at West Brom, in which the R's were extremely unlucky to concede a 93rd minute equalizer.

One can only assume that Magilton's position was deemed untenable and the two parties agreed to part ways.

Early indications are that Gareth Southgate is to be the next man under the microscope at Loftus Road, although there are also strong rumours of the two man team of Paul Hart and Mick Harford, a former R's caretaker manager, are also in line.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Battling Rangers denied at the death.

Last night we travelled up to West Brom for our second Monday night in front of the Sky cameras in a row after our awful defeat at the hands of Watford last week and the well publicised events that followed the game. On this occasion we hoped for a better performance as we headed up to the Midlands.

On today’s journey Sam, Justin, Me and my mate Pete took to the road just before 4pm as we took what was a surprisingly easy journey that we expected to hit plenty of traffic but in fact hit none at all and arrived at our destination at 6pm. The mood in the car was pretty positive as both Sam and Justin predicted a 1-0 Rangers win, Pete saying that he felt pretty positive that we’d get a good result whilst I was on my own in thinking that another defeat was on the cards. We met our welsh friends Richard and Sophie in the ground to discuss our chances whilst enjoying a nice cold beer to really warm us up.

In Steve Gallen and Marc Bircham’s first game as a caretaker manager team four changes were made. Kaspers Gorkss, Tommy Williams, Adel Taarabt and Jay Simpson came into the starting line up as Fitz Hall, Gary Borrowdale, Akos Buzsaky (injured) and Rowan Vine dropped out.


The opening exchanges saw the home side have the better of the game and if it wasn’t for some poor finishing then we could’ve easily seen the first goal of the game, luckily we didn’t.
We also witnessed a goal kick from Cerny that looked more like a golf shot as a huge divot was taken out of the ground and resulted in the R’s keeper having to get his ankle tightly taped up as support. Cerny looked to struggle with this injury throughout the game.
After an edgy looking opening 20minutes the R’s started to come into the game a bit more. Adel Taarabt, who was proving to be as unpredictable and as frustrating as ever, had the first real effort on goal for the visitors as he shot from 25 yards and saw his effort tipped away by Dean Kiely. From the resulting corner the R’s should’ve been awarded a penalty, which no-one seemed to spot, as Patrick Agyemang’s shirt was near enough torn off him as the corner came over. It seemed in the replay as if the ref had a decent enough view and really should’ve awarded it.
Soon after West Brom were handed a great opportunity after a mistake by Damion Stewart. Luke Moore battled his way through and shot, Cerny saved and as the ball spun behind him he swung an arm at the ball and battered it out for a corner.
With the game nearing the end of the half it was evident that the entire Rangers team was prepared to fight and battle for everything. Kaspers Gorkss, Damion Stewart and Mikele Leigertwood were the stand out stars, in my opinion, throughout the first half and really helped build a platform where the confidence grew throughout the game.


Half time came and I received texts from Lofty and PK saying that we were looking good on TV and that we really could go on, cause more problems and maybe even go on and win the game. I thought we looked as if we just about looked second best from the stands and were defending heroically, but as they say pictures paint a thousand words.

The second half started off extremely lively and it was the home side that had the first chance, Brunt effort was beaten away by Cerny before Stewart came in to clear the danger.
10 minutes into the second half we saw our first piece of action in front of the away following.
Rangers won a corner on the right hand side. Ben Watson delivered the corner which was inch perfect for Gorkss to get his head onto..... only for Olsson to nip in ahead of the big Latvian and inadvertently head into his own net and send the 300-400 travelling Rangers fans crazy.
Only seconds later, buoyed by the opening goal, Rangers came so close to making it 2-0! Taarabt picked the ball up about 40 yards from goal and drove towards goal before unleashing a fantastic strike heading for the top corner but Kiely got a fingertip to it and it proved to be just enough to direct the ball onto the crossbar and bounce out to safety. So very close!!
However only 5 minutes later it was 2-0.
Watson again was the provider, swinging in a free kick which could only be palmed away by Kiely before Joe Mattock flicked the ball across goal where Kaspers Gorkss was unmarked and on hand to nod home into the empty net. All of us in the away stand went absolutely mental, it was something that was totally unexpected at the start of the night and the feeling of ecstasy just grew beyond the point of belief.
Again it was 5 minutes later that we saw our 3rd goal of the game, this time going to the home side.
A cross came in from the right and the ball eventually fell to the feet of a former R’s loanee, Jerome Thomas, and he made no mistake and drilled his effort past Cerny.
Straight from kick off the R’s came so close to adding to their tally. Routledge picked the ball up from the right hand side and ran at defenders down the wing before cutting in and beating another two defenders and letting fly with a left footed effort, once again it was heading into the top corner but once again Dean Kiely got a fingertip to it and pushed it out wide for a corner. I really don’t know how he got to it!
We then endured a 20minute spell of pure pressure by West Brom and defended with every bit of heart, grit and determination that you could hope for. Bodies were being thrown in front of shots and the pure will to win was evident for everyone to see and it looked to of paid off as we got through the last minutes of injury time but there was still time for a telling attack.
Rangers broke free down the left hand side with Faurlin and all he had to do was run into the corner and waste sometime but instead chose to pass to an advancing Pellicori, who if he had more pace would’ve beaten the defender to the ball and surely put the game beyond doubt, instead the pass was cut out and allowed West Brom to launch one more telling attack. A long ball was pumped up field and Chris Brunt drove an effort on goal which could only be parried by Cerny and there was Simon Cox on hand to put home the rebound and break Rangers hearts, 16 seconds over the 3 minutes of added on time. If only we kept the ball in the corner!!

In reflection, after having all night to calm down, I would’ve taken a draw at the start of the game but having seen the pure determination of the players and to bounce back from the goings on from last Monday night shows that we do have some steel in our squad and that they are prepared to battle on for the cause. I just hope that this is a stepping stone for better things to come from the team.

West Brom: Kiely, Mattock, Olsson, Brunt, Thomas, Moore (Wood 65), Dorrans, Zuiverloon (Bednar 85), Meite, Cox, Jara.

Subs not used: Allsop, Cech, Teixeira, Mulumbu, Martis.

Goals: Thomas (67), Cox (90)

Bookings: Brunt (84)

QPR: Cerny, Ramage, Stewart, Leigertwood, Routledge, Agyemang (Pellicori 84), Gorkss, Watson, Williams, Simpson (Hall 90), Taarabt (Faurlin 81).

Subs not used: Taylor, Vine, Alberti, Parker.

Goals: Olsson OG (56), Gorkss (62)

Attendance: 21, 565

Onto the nights Man of the Match. For me there are 3 main contenders from the game and I mentioned them earlier, Kaspers Gorkss, Damion Stewart and Mikele Leigertwood. All three had fantastic games and the way they continued to battle, put a foot in and closed down attackers really personified the performance put out on the pitch tonight, but there can only be one winner and the person that Lofty and myself agree deserves it is Kaspers Gorkss.

Despite feeling pretty gutted on the way home, which only took an hour and a half from battling our way out of the car park, we had a little puzzle to solve. Justin had bet on Gorkss scoring the first goal of the second half at a cool 50/1 but we were unsure of the rules seeing as the first goal was an own goal. I was pretty sure that it went on to the next goal scored but wasn’t 100%. Having seen Gorkss score the second we were hopeful that he had won the money. Luckily he kept the betting sheet and cashed it in today and found out that he had a winner and was £51 better off, well done Justin! Lucky git!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

R's on The Road.......... To West Bromwich Albion

Tomorrow the R’s once again find themselves in front of Sky’s Monday Night Football cameras away from home. This time their opponents are West Bromwich Albion. Here are a few hints and tips to help you along the way.


The Stadium.

Current Capacity – 26,500

The club was formed in 1878 by workers from Salter's Spring Works in West Bromwich, and have played their home games at The Hawthorns since 1900. They were renamed West Bromwich Albion in 1880, becoming the first team to adopt the Albion suffix. Albion was a district of West Bromwich where some of the players lived or worked. Albion's main club crest dates back to the late 1880s, when the club's secretary Tom Smith suggested that a throstle sitting on a crossbar be adopted for the crest. Since then, the club crest has always featured a throstle, usually on a blue and white striped shield, although the crossbar was replaced with a hawthorn branch at some point after the club's move to The Hawthorns in 1900. The Hawthorns became an all-seater stadium in the 1990s, in order to comply with the recommendations of the Taylor Report. At an altitude of 551 feet (168 m) above sea level, The Hawthorns is the highest of all the 92 Premier League and Football League grounds.
Away fans are usually housed in the Smethwick End and usually have to share this with some of the home support. The facilities in here are ok but you will find that if you are on the tall side of the scales that you will struggle for leg room.


The History between the teams.

At West Brom (17)

West Brom 9
Draw 5

The Hawthorns hasn’t been a happy hunting ground for the R’s, with their last victory being a 1-0 win back in 1999. Stuart Wardley bagged a 52nd minute winner for the R’s that day.

How to get there.

By Car:-
The post code you need for your sat nav today is B71 4LF.
People using the Motorways are advised to use the M40 - M42 – M6 – M5 route due to the roadworks being done on the Motorways in the Midlands. Upon leaving the M5 at junction 1, head down the A41 towards Birmingham and about a mile down the road you will hit your destination.
Street parking as well as private match day car parks, costing in the region of £4-5, is available to you.

By Train:- The closest railway stations are The Hawthorns which is about five minutes walk from the ground and Smethwick Rolfe Street, which is about a 15 minute walk from the ground. The Hawthorns is served by a Metro service from Birmingham Snow Hill station, whilst Smethwick Rolfe Street is served by local trains from Birmingham New Street. The Metro service takes eight minutes to the Hawthorns from Birmingham Snow Hill and trains run every 15 minutes.

Pubs 'n' Grub.

Two pubs are worth trying if you fancy a beer before the game. The Park Hotel which is located just off the M1 and roughly a 10 minute walk to the ground is worth a try and holds a friendly and safe environment, so I read. Parking is also available here at £5 so it holds some appeal. An alternative is The Royal Oak, which is half a mile past The Hawthorns and has also greeted friendly away followings.

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Magilton Suspened..........

At lunchtime today it was confirmed that Jim Magilton had been suspended by the club over reported incidents after the game against Watford and an internal investigation is to be held.


After Rangers 3-1 defeat at Vicarage Road the players were locked in the dressing room for 30-45 minutes as a severe dressing down was handed out.
A Daily Mail report and rumours suggest that Magilton tore into Damion Stewart and then moved onto Akos Buzsaky and after a few words asked the Hungarian if he felt he had been bullied, Magilton received an answer he didnt like and apparently headbutted Buzsaky. The exchange go so heated that Patrick Agyemang stepped in and was offered the same treatment as Buzsaky but Agyemang stood his ground and Magilton backed off.
Buzsaky walked out of the dressing room despite John Gorman asking for him to stay and was locked out of the dressing room for over half an hour as the dressing down continued.
A mark on the forehead of Magilton was evident in a Sky Sports interview after the game and only strengthens the reported rumours.

At time time of writing it has now been said that John Gorman and Keith Ryan are now refusing to work until Magilton is reinstated.

Youth Team coaches Marc Bircham and Steve Gallen have been put in temporary charge from Monday's game at West Brom.

Early rumours are that Alan Curbishley, Steve Coppell and Darren Ferguson are likely targets if Magilton is to depart.

The club have now gone on record to release a statement saying that Akos Buzsaky has not handed in a transfer request and Akos is quoted on the QPR offical site as saying "It is not true at all."
"I am entirely focused on our next fixture against West Bromwich Albion on Monday night. We are in a strong position just three points outside the play-off's and as professional footballers our sole aim is to focus on the upcoming matches."

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Wat a shambles!!

Tonight’s game was one that many of the Lofty Heights crew were dreading as we have such a poor record at Vicarage Road in recent years. We’ve only won there once since 1988 and tonight we never looked like adding to that solitary win.
A quick visit to The One Bell pub was the start of our time in Hertfordshire as Me, Sam and Justin met up with Nik, Connor and a few other QPR fans in there for a pre match beer and no-one was confident of a result. We all said that if we were offered a draw then we would quite happily take it, whereas Justin was going with the stats and predicted a 3-0 or 3-1 defeat (if only that bet was put on!) We met Lofty inside the ground prior to kick off in the tight concourse in the away end.

Four changes were made to Saturday’s dismal performance against Middlesbrough. Gorkss, Taarabt, Buzsaky and Simpson (four of our best players) made way for Stewart, Ramage, Vine and Agyemang. A very confusing decision to drop Gorkss when there were two other defenders that performed worse than him, and to drop our top scorer and two of our most creative players yet leaving in Watson and Leigertwood, who have both been disappointing as of late just makes me scratch my head, especially as these changes pushed our best ball playing midfielder out to the left, just doesn’t make sense to me!!


The game started off as a really tight affair in the opening 10minutes or so but as the half grew older it was the home side that looked to be more of a threat in the attacking third and the more likely to create any openings.
Chances were thin on the ground, only Cleverley’s drive that flashed past Cerny’s post was the only chance to note as the half was 30minutes old.
Despite the home side looking to have the upper hand it was Rangers that took the lead on 34 minutes. Faurlin played a sublime ball into the path of Agyemang. He ran across the 18 yard box and then placed his shot into the bottom left corner for his second goal in two games.
The goal seemed to give the R’s some confidence going into half time but it was just typical that we would switch off in defence and concede yet another sloppy goal on the stroke of half time. Harley’s cross from the Watford left found Cowie in acres of space at the back post and he played a ball back over to the other post where the advancing Doyley wasn’t picked up and thumped a diving header into the unguarded net to score his first ever goal in ten years of playing for the Hornets. Poor defending! So many questions have to be asked about what was happening and who was supposed to be marking who.

Half time was upon us and as we were making our way to the concourse for our half time chat we were reminded by the annoying person who was on the PA that it was Doyley’s first goal for the club and really got under the Rangers fans skins. Once we finished scratching our heads it was time for the second half.


Watford came out the better side in the second half and if it wasn’t for a fantastic save from Ellington by Cerny. Ellington’s header looked to be sneaking just inside the left hand post but Cerny was at full stretch to make sure the ball stayed in play and was cleared.
On 56 minutes the Hornets got the second goal that they deserved. Danny Graham played in Cowie and he drove his effort into the bottom right corner. It was going from bad to worse!
Taarabt entered the game shortly after the second goal, he replaced Vine.
Despite the change Watford were still the better side and really should’ve added a third. Harley’s shot was beaten away by Cerny but it fell to Henderson and his header was brilliantly saved by Cerny as he recovered from the first shot and beat the ball away from danger.
Rangers pushed for the equalizer but were really lacking ideas up front. Taarabt was having one of those games that just frustrate the hell out of you. He was persistent in taking 9 touches before attempting 3-4 step over’s and then losing the ball when it would’ve been easier to slip in an easy pass.
Watford were still making chances and it was that man Doyley that nearly scored once again! He let rip from 25 yards out but his effort flew high and wide of Cerny’s goal.
Two further substitutions were made as Rangers looked to try and salvage something out of the game. Jay Simpson came on for Wayne Routledge, a decision that didn’t go down well with the travelling supporters and was booed and the chants of “you don’t know what you’re doing” started off. The other substitution was slightly more popular. Buzsaky came on for Leigertwood, who once again had a disappointing game in my eyes.
Rangers did press for the final 15minutes and had one real chance to note, Buzsaky skying the ball from 12yards out.
Things got really stupid when Fitz Hall dived in and conceded a foul on the edge of the box. The Rangers fans started chanting “off off off” for the challenge. Now I know that Hall has been pretty poor of late and doesn’t deserve his place in the team ahead of Gorkss but to do that is pretty harsh and will not help him out at all. Just my opinion, I’m sure others will think differently to me.
Just as we thought things couldn’t get any worse they did!
Cleverley broke clear of the Rangers defence and stroked the ball into the bottom left corner and really annoy the 1,442 Rangers fans in attendance.

As we made our way out of the ground the final whistle blew and put us out of our misery. The annoying announcer decided to harp on about the Doyley goal once again and said that there will be some Doyley memorabilia being made to commemorate the goal. As u can imagine this was met by a wave of f%@k off you .... by the R’s fans trying to leave the ground.
I can honestly say that I really don’t know what is going on at the moment. Last year we had one of the best defensive records in the division by playing a settled back four and having a player of the season and runner up player of the season as our two centre backs yet Jim just doesn’t seem willing to play them together and opts for Hall who for me isn’t any better than Stewart, Gorkss or Connolly. Something else that really grinds my gears is the fact that Watson has been poor in his last four outings and Leigertwood has been poor in his last 2-3 games were played as a centre midfield pair yet Faurlin who has been outstanding in the centre was pushed out to the left. It puzzles me how players that have been consistently poor, like Watson, have managed to remain in the starting eleven. It’s obvious to me that the 4-2-3-1 formation we were playing during our fantastic run in October needs to return and the 4-4-1-1 that we are now playing needs to be ditched. Personally I would pick a team like this once one or two injuries clear up :-
Connolly Stewart Gorkss Borrowdale
Faurlin Buzsaky
Routledge Taarabt Vine/Cook

Again that is there for debating purposes.

Watford: Loach, Mariappa, Cowie, Graham, Doyley, Harley (Severin 83), Cleverley, Cathcart (De Merit 46), Ellington (Henderson 57), Eustace, Hodson.

Subs not used: Lee, Bennett, Sadler, Bryan.

Scorers: Doyley (43), Cowie (56), Cleverley (90)

QPR: Cerny, Ramage, Stewart, Hall, Leigertwood (Buzsaky 75), Routledge (Simpson 72), Vine (Taarabt 59), Agyemang, Watson, Faurlin, Borrowdale.

Subs not used: Taylor, Pellicori, Gorkss, Williams.

Scorers: Agyemang (34)

Bookings: Stewart (82), Hall (88)

Referee: Mr A Penn

Attendance: 15, 082 (1, 442 Rangers fans)

Today’s Man of the Match can only be awarded to one person this evening and that is Patrick Agyemang. He took his goal well and worked hard throughout the game, thats as good as it gets.

After the game we took a walk into the high street and had 20 odd Watford fans clock us 5 Rangers fans and proceeded to chants their songs at us, it was all in good sprits and unfortunately we had a pretty drunken Nik in our company and he decided to counter their chants in his own one man band, was a very funny thing to witness and certainly helped us forget about the match and gave us something to laugh about, it was very funny to watch. Once had had grabbed our food Nik disappeared off to the club he was going to and we headed for our cars in hope that the traffic had died down. Once the grub was finished and we had finished randomly beeping our horns at random people, which evidently cured a problem I had with my headlight, we went our separate ways and the night came to an end.

Sunday, December 06, 2009

R's on The Road.......... To Watford

On Monday night we travel to Watford to play in front of the Sky cameras once again. Here are a few hints and tips for those taking the short trip to Hertfordshire.


The Stadium.

Current Capacity – 19,900

Watford have been at home at Vicarage Road since 1922. From 1922-2001 the ground was owned by Benskins Brewery and they bought the ground from its freehold outright and owned the stadium for the first time in its history. However due to the clubs poor financial state in 2002 they had to sell the ground and agreed a £6m deal but agreed a £7m buy back clause in the future. This option was taken up in 2004 and once again owned the ground.
Redevelopments at Vicarage Road have been prominent for the last two years as improvements are made to the ground. The South-West corner has been the main focal point of this and when it is finished it will house the new dressing rooms and a new media centre. The East Stand will be the next subject of redevelopment and they hope all work will be completed by 2011.

Away fans are housed in the Vicarage Road end for this fixture. The stand holds 2,200 people and offers a great view of proceedings on the pitch. The concourses however are the tightest you will ever come across and will struggle to breath down there. There is a betting facility down there also.


The History between the teams.

At Watford (54)

Watford 20
QPR 22
Draw 12

Vicarage Road hasn’t been a happy hunting ground for Rangers. Since 1988 the R’s have once won once in eight attempts, the solitary win coming two seasons ago during the Christmas period with a fantastic display of football and ending up 4-2 victors.
In the last five meetings at Watford the home side have won four of the matches, with the outcome being either 3-0 or 3-1. This game promises goals and lets hope they end up in the right net as far as Rangers are concerned, especially with the Sky cameras on us.


How to get there.

By Car:- The post code for today is WD18 0ER.
There are many ways to enter Watford. Via the M1 you should come off at junction 5 and take the A4008 into Watford town centre. Via the M25 you should come off at junction 19 and get onto the A41 towards Watford and once again head towards the town centre. On reaching Watford you will be greeted by the inner ring road. For the easiest parking I would suggest the Church Street multi storey car park as it is open for 24hrs and will only cost you £2.50 for 4hours. The ground is a 5 minute walk from there.

By Train:- The overground station at Watford is the Watford Junction train station and is a 20 minute walk to the ground. You can catch the Metropolitan Line down to Watford High Street or alternatively walk for the 20minutes if you choose. The directions should you decide to take the walk are as follows. Leave the station & take main road straight opposite (Clarendon Road) all the way (over Ring Road at lights) up to the High Street. Turn left and go past Wetherspoons (Moon under Water) on your right and then take the first right after 100 yards into Market Street. Continue along again crossing Ring Road to T junction & then left at chip shop. Vicarage Road is the next right turn.
Watford High Street tube station is on the Metropolitan Line and is a short walk away from the ground. Come out of the tube station and take a left onto the High Street. A short way up the High Street is King Street on the left hand side, go up there and follow it up to the end of the road (Lady’s Close) turn right and this will lead you onto Vicarage Road. At the start of Vicarage Road take a left and then follow the road into the away end.

Pubs 'n' Grub.

With the ground being only a 5-10 minute walk from the High street you have a full array of food and drinking outlets to take advantage of. Everything you could possibly want is here and needs no build up.

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Christmas comes early for Boro.

Today we hosted a visiting Middlesborough side that under new manager Gordon Strachan have lost two and drawn two during his four game reign and hoped to beat an indifferent Rangers side.

In attendance today were Lofty, California Hoop, Sam and Me. Unfortunately due to a holiday and other reasons we were missing PK, Corp and Jenson. At least they didn’t miss much!

Only one change was made from last week’s 2-2 draw against Coventry and it was a forced one. Matt Connolly was replaced by Kaspers Gorkss in the heart of the defence.


In the opening exchanges it was Rangers looking the more threatening side. Three corners in the opening four minutes was the only reward Rangers had for their pressure.
Adel Taarabt had two good chances to open the scoring but his efforts went high and wide and he also had an effort deflected away for another corner. Once against the corner provided no real danger.
The momentum soon changed in favour of the visitors.
Mark Yeates unleashed a 30 yard drive, with a lethal dip on it, and Radek Cerny dived in despair as he saw the ball crash against the bar.
Moments later we had the opening goal of the game.
Boro had a free kick 35 yards out. Gary O’Neil floating in a lovely ball and Dave Kitson was on hand to flick home from 12 yards out. The marking from the set piece was once again awful and Kitson was left free in space to poke his effort home.
Boro continued to have the better of the half as Rangers looked a shadow of the team that dazzled us in October.

The half time gathering was mainly focused away from the game we had been watching as it was a pretty unentertaining half to watch.

The second half came along far too quickly for our liking but we returned to our seats to endure another 45minutes.
Boro had a corner two minutes into the half and ended up scoring from the corner but the ref spotted a handball before the goal was scored and awarded a penalty.
Leroy Lita, who Rangers fans just love to hate, stepped up and made no mistake from 12 yards out.
Straight after the goal a double substitution was made. Rowan Vine and Patrick Agyemang came on for the poor Akos Buzsaky and the lonely Jay Simpson.
The substitution soon paid dividends and a goal was quickly clawed back. Vine broke away down the left hand side and squared the ball in the box for Agyemang, who was off balance, he swung his foot at it and sidefooted home from 8 yards out.
Poor Rangers defending aided Boro to get a third goal of the game. Leigertwood gave the ball away cheaply on the right hand side. Lita was given the ball and he run at Hall before turning him inside out far too easily and placing his effort home from close range.
The show wasn’t over and on 75 minutes a 4th Boro goal was added. Lita again was at the heart of it, his effort struck Cerny’s left hand post and the ball fell kindly to Gary O’Neil and he put the ball into the empty R’s net.
It was at this point Lofty made a swift exit and 5minutes later Sam and Me headed for the exit after witnessing a dismal defensive performance.
After we left a 30 yarder from Mark Yeates made matters worse for the R’s.

Defensively today we were awful and didn’t seem to have a clue. Leigertwood and Hall were really poor today. In fairness to the defence, last season we had one of the best defences in the league and that was mainly down to us having a settled back 4. So far this season we haven’t played the same 4 for more than 2games running and we need some stability in this area.
Its also evident now that Simpson really needs some proper help up front. We cant play Routledge up there with him as this takes away our width down the right hand side without him being there.
Another player that has disappointed me of late is Buzsaky. He looks a little disinterested, maybe this is because he is being played out of position? Who knows.

QPR: Cerny, Hall, Leigertwood, Routledge (Pellicori 82), Buzsaky (Vine 52), Gorkss, Watson, Faurlin, Simpson (Agyemang 52), Borrowdale, Taarabt.

Subs not used: Taylor, Ramage, Stewart, Williams.

Scorers: Agyemang (54)

Middlesbrough: Jones, Pogatetz, Yeates, Lita, St Ledger, O'Neil (Digard 79), Arca, R
Williams, Wheater, Kitson, Osbourne.

Subs not used: Coyne, Hoyte, Riggott, Emnes, McMahon, L Williams.

Scorers: Kitson (31), Lita (Pen 50 & 60), O'Neil (75), Yeates (87)

Bookings: Lita (50), Osbourne (58)

Referee: Mr P N Gibbs

Attendance: 13, 949

Lofty's Man of the Match today could quite easily be awarded to Damion Stewart as he warmed up exceptionally well and was the best defender to touch the turf during the 90 mins. However just for his effort the player receiveing the award today is Alejandro Faurlin.