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

Tuesday, March 08, 2011

Rangers' hit by a brick 'Wall.

Tonight the R's faithful made the daunting trip to The New Den in lovely South Bermondsey. After the events of what happened at Loftus Road in late September following the gang travelled in hope of avoiding seeing any trouble at all.

The gang tonight was down to four as Jenson drove down myself, Sam, Lofty and Jenson's friend Smithy.
We hit the road at 3.50 and went to pick up Lofty from Northolt and hit the popular M25 traffic hot spots on our way round one of the most loved motorways in the country. One of the more popular topics on the way was whether there was going to be any trouble tonight and Sam was worried that we might get caught up in it but the four of us lads were there to reassure her and we were all in hope that with Cardiff being down the road at Crystal Palace that it would take the eye of the Millwall lot and would take the trouble as far away from us as possible.
We arrived at the ground in good time and met up with Nik, Iceman and Luke for a good pre-match chin wag, pie and a pint before taking to our seats in the middle of the upper tier and well out of missile launching distance.

Neil Warnock made one change from Saturday's win against Leicester. Fitz Hall dropped out through injury and he was replaced by Kaspers Gorkss.


With 2,200 Rangers' fans behind them it was the R's that started this London derby the better of the two teams.
Millwall's game plan was evident from the start, park the bus and hit Ranger's on the counter and also be very physical. That physical side showed when the first challenge was put in on Taarabt, sending the R's captain flying with a tackle well worthy of a booking and the referee set the tone for the game by bottling it and not producing a yellow card.
From the resulting free kick Taarabt dusted himself down and floated his cross over to the back post and found Kaspers Gorkss who's bullet header was tipped around the post for a corner.
From that corner Taarabt found Clint Hill and he placed his header just wide.
Both Millwall and the R's were battling in midfield throughout the half it was Rangers' that were just about the better team as the half came to a close, Millwall were putting up a good fight on the field and were making it incredibly hard for us to break them down. Helguson was being pushed and pulled all over the place and as soon as an R's player tried doing the same to a Millwall player the ref instantly gave the decision to the home team.


Half time came around and we all decided to stay in our seats as only one kiosk downstairs was open and the space on the concourse wasn't great at all. instead we reflected on the half, which took all of 30 seconds and looked at the other Championship scores.
It was also nice to see the lovely Millwall fans either side of us relaxing after what must've been an exciting half of football for them, especially as they probably only watched about 10 minutes of it at most!

The teams came out for the second half, no changes were made so it was game on.
Rangers' had the first chance of the half when Routledge crossed to the back post and Orr headed straight at the Millwall keeper. All that was needed was a bit of composure and maybe the R's would've taken the lead.
The game then went back to a midfield battle and really killed the atmosphere amongst the fans, it really wasn't pretty to watch but it suited Millwall down to the ground and they were beginning to take charge and were becoming the team in the ascendancy.
On 63 minutes the opening goal of the game came.
A long ball over the top cleared Morrison of Shittu and Gorkss and he raced on before smashing home into Kenny's near post. It was a simple route one passage of play that caught us out but the finish by Morrison left Paddy with no chance what so ever.
In scenes that I've rarely seen before, as soon as the ball hit the back of the net all you could see was half the stand on each side of the ground just charge towards you to goad, not because they cared but because they wanted a reaction off of us. It honestly looked like Morrison had just scored the goal that won the European cup for them, thats how much of a big deal they made of it.
The goal gave the Lions the extra impetus to go and kill us off as we really did not come out in the second half at all.
Ten minutes later and Rangers' were caught out again.
Another long ball caught us out and Morrison broke clear again, this time Shittu caught up with him but was judged to of unfairly fouled him inside the box and as the last man Shittu was given a red card to give him the worst possible return to The Den, especially with all the racist abuse he was getting from the home 'supporters'.
Liam Trotter stepped up and sent Kenny the wrong way and doubled the lead for Millwall. Having already celebrated in front of the away support with his team mates Trotter then decided to dance away in front of us and further goad the away support, as he done for the entire game referee Tanner failed to even have a word and bottled giving Trotter a yellow card for inciting the away supporters.
The second goal killed the game off as a contest but that did not stop the ref and his fellow officials to fail to give decisions in our favour and give everything against us. An extremely frustrating night south of the river for us Rangers' fans!


As you can probably tell I personally am not happy with the officials performance in tonight's game. There were too many occasions were they bottled decisions because of the atmosphere within The Den tonight, there were scared to give anything against them in case they upset the home support.
Despite this though you cant take it away from Millwall, they were the better side in the second half and in the end you have to say that we were maybe lucky to only lose by two in the end.
On a final note I have to mention the Millwall fans.
This was my first visit to The Den with the gang and I knew that things were not exactly going to be comfortable but I have come away with a stronger dislike for them after what happened tonight and the past events in September. The set of 'fans' to our right clearly were not there for the football as they taunted fans and even racially abused members of the travelling support whilst the stewards and police around them just watched them do it. Plus the racial abuse they were Danny Shittu was a complete disgrace, however I'm sure nothing will be done about it and it'll be brushed off as their fans just being 'passionate about the club', what a load of rubbish that is!!!
Then after the game as the R's fans were trying to make their way to their trains it was the Millwall fans that begun to pelt the Rangers' fans with bricks, seats and coins amongst things. It was the police from the R's side that had to step in as nothing was being done on the other side. It was a relief that the gang along with Callun hung around at the other end of the gates as we waited to exit onto the streets and walk back to our car and hope we didn't bump into any unsavoury characters. We all got back to the car to find Jenson had got a parking ticket and bundled in, with Callun having to laying in the boot for the first 10 miles of the journey as we quickly escaped.
As we got back north of the river and in cleaner air we made a quick stop at a Shell garage for a quick bit of food and drink before Jenson whizzed us back home and in the warmth of our homes.

Our Man of the Match only has two runners in it today and they were both of our holding midfielders. Shaun Derry was immense today and was always covering defensively when we were wayward, putting in some important challenges. However once more it was Alejandro Faurlin that caught our eye as he looked to be involved in everything and really got stuck into the nitty gritty tonight and because of this he gained a unanimous vote from everyone to get tonights award.

Millwall: Forde, Dunne, Robinson, Trotter, Harris (Lisbie 66), Henry, Craig, Mkandawire, Ward, Morison, Townsend.

Subs: Mildenhall, Eastmond, Schofield, Hackett, Barron, McQuoid.

Scorers: Morison (63), Trotter (73)

QPR: Kenny, Orr, Hill, Derry, Taarabt (Smith 71), Helguson, Buzsaky (Miller 71), Faurlin, Gorkss, Routledge, Shittu.

Subs: Cerny, Hulse, Smith, Vaagan-Moen, Ephraim, Chimbonda.

Red Cards: Shittu (72)

Referee: Mr S Tanner

Attendance: 14, 104 (2186 QPR)

I hope everyone managed to get home safely from The Den, I have been recieving texts saying that a lot of people are getting home and managed to avoid all the trouble afterwards.

Lofty will be back on Saturday with the Palace round up and hopefully it will be a lot happier than what we have had to endure tonight.



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