R's Gain a Point Despite a Second Half Hammer-ing...
West Ham 1-1 QPR
Loic Remy scored on his Premier League debut, as Rangers held on for an extremely hard fought point at a bitterly cold Upton Park this afternoon.
What with the snow hitting the country over the past couple of days, we couldn't help but wonder if this game would go ahead at all? But at about 10am, West Ham confirmed there were no problems so the gang made their way to East London. What with rail replacement services and text messages unable to get through, I arrived first at Upton Park station and waited for the arrival of Lee, Jess, Sam, Luke and Jenson, who arrived at about 1.45 and we headed straight for the away end. We had some refreshments, including the latest instalment of the away day pie rating, of which the result will appear later...
We took our seats in the away section, which included R's Chairman, Tony Fernandes, who would have certainly enjoyed what he saw in the opening half an hour or so..
West Ham went close through Mohamed Diame and Kevin Nolan and had a penalty appeal waved away by Howard Webb, when Chamakh stumbled over after tangling with Wright-Phillips. At the other end, Rangers were using their new found pace with Taarabt linking up well with Remy, but on the first 2 occasions, the clubs record signing was caught offside. But on 14 minutes, he got it spot on, latching on to Taarabt's superb through ball to finish coolly past Jaaskelainen.
Rangers were pretty comfortable for the remainder of the half with the Hammers threatening little and had Taarabt done better just before the break, we may have been going in with a 2 goal half time lead.
Onto the second half and I think it's pretty much fair to say, that West Ham completely battered us. They bombarded the Rangers box with cross after cross and there was goalmouth scramble after goalmouth scramble, with Rangers defending resiliently and Cesar in great form in the R's goal. But on 68 minutes, Rangers finally cracked when, another Jarvis cross found substitute, Carlton Cole, who's header produced another fine save from Cesar, but this time the ball fell to Joe Cole who tapped home the rebound.
The home side continued to press and Winston Reid's fierce goal-bound shot was blocked bravely by Stephane Mbia after a goalmouth scramble, before Joe Cole rounded Cesar only to see his shot turned away by Hill. In truth, Rangers offered little threat going forward and tried to catch West Ham on the break.
Queens Park Rangers
- 33 Julio Cesar
- 06 Hill
- 15 Onuoha
- 17 Nelsen
- 20 Fabio
- 04 Derry
- 10 Taarabt (Park Ji-sung - 82' )
- 11 Wright-Phillips (Traore - 58' )
- 40 M'bia
- 12 Mackie (Bothroyd - 67' )
- 18 Remy
- 01 Green
- 03 Traore
- 05 Ferdinand
- 07 Park Ji-sung
- 32 Faurlin
- 23 Hoilett
- 37 Bothroyd
Man of the Match - almost a clean sweep with Lee picking out Stephane Mbia for his all round battling performance. But for the rest of us, Julio Cesar was the stand out man for another dominating showing in the R's goal.
Awayday Pie Rating
Lee - Chicken Balti - couldn't fault it, but dropped half a mark just because he can - 9.5/10
Jenson - Steak - could not say enough about it, especially the ample filling - 10/10
Lofty - Chicken Balti - as above, nothing to fault, heated to perfection, well presented and very easy to eat - 10/10
Luke - Cornish Pasty - simply replied - 10/10
Giving the West Ham pies a MASSIVE 9.88/10 (new leaders). Will that be beaten? I very much doubt it...
So after the game, we decided to go away from the crowds and take the long hike to East Ham Station, for what was probably the most entertaining part of the day. As we took our seats on the train, a Gentleman wearing headphones and enjoying his music sat himself next to Lee... and oblivious to all those around him, danced along to what was playing into his ears. There was dance moves aplenty and lots of arm movements, going right across Lee's face if it needed too and at one point, if you would have guessed he was listening to Greased Lightning, you would understand what I meant. After much laughter from us all, often trying to hide it, Lee's simple comment was - 'I always attract them'...
Lee will return next weekend when we have a rare distraction of an FA CUP 4th Round tie at home to MK Dons.
Until then, Keep the Faith and Come on you R'sssss!!