How To Lose A Game In 20 Seconds.....
Rangers' played their first home game since being relegated against Reading last weekend. The opponents were Champions League chasing Arsenal.
Myself, Jess, Lofty and Jenson all arrived and parked in the same street just after 4pm before heading our separate ways as Jess and myself treated ourselves to a pre-match Nandos to lift the spirits ahead of a game that we were dreading against an in form Arsenal side and with the lack of effort seen in recent weeks we were fearing a cricket score.
Harry Redknapp made changes to the side that drew at Reading last week. Tal Ben Haim, 'John' Si Park, Andros Townsend and Bobby Zamora all returned to the starting eleven to hopefully give the R's the touch of quality that they were missing in the last few weeks.
The game could not of got off to a worse start as Arsenal carved the R's defence apart after 20 seconds as Theo Walcott finished a good passing move from the visitors. In the Upper Loft we were shouting for offside but no-one seemed to have many complaints and the fear of a cricket score were coming true!
Arsenal dominated for the opening 25 minutes as the R's struggled to get a foothold on the game and being totally outnumbered in midfield.
Rangers' slowly got back into the game and finally managed to create a few chances with Ben Haim shooting over after a driving run and then 'John' Si Park fired over from close range after the sun got in his eyes and blinded him as he swung his leg at the ball.
The half time interval consisted of the gang making the most of the good weather down in the Lower Loft and just wishing the game and the rest of the season away so we can come back next season and enjoy watching a team that have an ounce of pride and actually earn their money.
Shaun Derry came on for Mbia at the start of the second half and the complexion of the R's midfield looked totally different as the old enforcer took control and it looked like we finally had a leader in the middle of the park and ensuring that the team did not go down with a whimper.
The R's made several great chances in the second half and forced Szczesny into two good saves.
Arsenal also created a few good chances themselves, however on more than one occasion they found Rob Green too good for them and the game ended as a 1-0 defeat from the early Walcott strike.
Well what can I say? It was a contrasting performance from the R's and they looked a lot better in the second 45 minutes with Shaun Derry really proving to make a difference and bringing some much needed leadership to the middle of the park.
One rant I do have is about Bobby Zamora! This 6ft 4inch lump is supposed to be a player that is vital to this team and will provide the team with the goals that are needed to win football matches, well that is according to Mr Redknapp. What I see is a lump up front that cannot jump and win a header, cannot control a ball and could not hit a cows arse with a banjo. Does he understand the offside rule?? How many times has he been caught offside in games? He is useless and offers nothing to our frontline! At least when Jay Bothroyd has played for us he's scored the winner at Southampton and last week had the two best chances for us as well as working his socks off for the team. Lofty said it after the game and Jess has said it recently, he will be a big player for us next year in the Championship. Offload Zamora if you can and I will personally drive the useless git to whoever will pay his wages.
Man of the Match is a close affair this week with the gang torn on the voting and there is a two way tie. There were two votes for Clint Hill and Tal Ben Haim. The other votes went to Andros Townsend and Shaun Derry.
Queens Park Rangers
- 01 Green
- 03 Traore (Fabio - 90' )
- 06 Hill
- 15 Onuoha
- 21 Ben-Haim
- 07 Park Ji-sung (Taarabt - 79' )
- 16 Jenas Booked
- 29 Townsend
- 40 M'bia (Derry - 46' Booked )
- 18 Remy
- 25 Zamora
- 26 Murphy
- 20 Fabio
- 04 Derry
- 10 Taarabt
- 14 Granero
- 12 Mackie
- 37 Bothroyd
- 01 Szczesny
- 03 Sagna
- 04 Mertesacker
- 06 Koscielny
- 17 Monreal Booked
- 07 Rosicky (Vermaelen - 90' )
- 08 Arteta
- 14 Walcott
- 16 Ramsey
- 19 Cazorla (Wilshere - 89' )
- 09 Podolski (Oxlade-Chamberlain - 85' )
- 24 Mannone
- 05 Vermaelen
- 25 Jenkinson
- 10 Wilshere
- 15 Oxlade-Chamberlain
- 22 Coquelin
- 27 Gervinho
As we returned to the cars after the game, Lofty noticed his boot protector in his car had fallen and had exposed his laptop as we were in the ground. Much to our surprise his laptop was still in the car unscathed, such a surprise not to see it stolen in Shepherds Bush!!
I will return next week with the report from the final home game of the season against Newcastle.