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

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Two Easy for United...

QPR 0-2 Man United

Another game, no points and more disappointment as, I think it's fair to say, United enjoyed a comfortable afternoon at a bitterly cold Loftus Road.

In what seemed like an age since the last home game, the gang eventually all assembled in the Lower Loft concourse, with the exception of Sam and Luke who were in town before the game and unfortunately, didn't get to see them today. Following a horrendous train journey, Lorna took her place in the stands with the game 5 or so minutes in.

Onto the game and it was pretty fiery and pretty well contested for the first fifteen minutes or so with Rangers more than holding their own against their lofty opponents. The first real chance of the game went to Hernandez, who flicked a header towards goal which Cesar tipped over the bar. The most disappointing thing of all was the the R's continually gave the ball away and after Taarabt gave the ball away on 23 minutes, Van Persie got to the byline and drove in a cross which Cesar palmed away... the R's defence sadly, only watched the ball drift out to Rafael, who smashed home a superb drive into the top corner. A quality strike it was, but you cannot help but feel it could and should have been prevented. Soon after, it was Rafael again, who stopped an R's equaliser by clearing Samba's header off the line, but there were further chances from RVP and Vidic to extend the lead before the break.

Onto the second half and the R's rallied quite well and another Samba header was pushed wide, not that we got a corner out of it. Bobby Zamora was leading the line well, but clearly struggling with injury, but even as he could hardly break into a trot, he was giving his all. He was replaced by Loic Remy on the hour mark and it was the returning R's frontman that almost brought the sides level with a rasping low drive, well save by De Gea.

But United made the game safe with 10 minutes to go, when the ball found it's way to the unmarked Giggs, who finished with style on his 999th senior appearance.

Queens Park Rangers

  • 33 Julio Cesar
  • 03 Traore
  • 05 Samba
  • 06 Hill
  • 19 Bosingwa
  • 10 Taarabt
  • 14 Granero (Jenas - 46' )
  • 29 Townsend (Hoilett - 72' )
  • 40 M'bia
  • 12 Mackie
  • 25 Zamora (Remy - 61' )


  • 01 Green
  • 15 Onuoha
  • 07 Park Ji-sung
  • 11 Wright-Phillips
  • 16 Jenas
  • 18 Remy
  • 23 Hoilett
Man of the Match  -

Totally unanimous, regardless of his substitution on 72 minutes, it was a clean sweep for Andros Townsend. With Special mention to Bobby Zamora, who led the line superbly and for 20 minutes, with an injury that the entire Loftus Road crowd could see.

In summary, although it was Champions elect, Man United we were playing, there was more disappointment and I think the majority of R's fans would feel that we didn't really get at them, like we did against Chelsea, Spurs and City. Personally, I got the feeling that United did the job without really getting into their stride, some may say that this wins titles. On the other hand, Sir Alex Ferguson will be absolutely delighted with the performance of his latest signing, referee Anthony Taylor - he gave Rangers absolutely nothing this afternoon, not even when right in front of him. He missed a certain penalty when Taarabt went down in the box and missed the foul on Mbia on route to Gigg's goal, along with untold amount of fouls along the way. United, however, only had to ask and Mr Taylor kindly obliged.

I will return next weekend as the R's, along with a huge following, travel to St Mary's to take on Southampton, a game we have to be looking to get something from...

Until then, Keep the Faith, it's not over yet...

Come on you R'ssssssssssssssssss!!!!

Saturday, February 09, 2013

Swans Flock The R's Over

The R's traveled to Swansea today hoping to gain some revenge for the 5-0 drubbing dished out at the start of the season at Loftus Road. Could Harry's Hoops continue their good form with their new, improved, tighter defence?

Unfortunately the gang were missing three members today. Lofty could not attend due to the game falling on his other halves birthday, Sam could not attend as she was looking after the twins and Lorna could not make the long journey to Wales.
The rest of us assembled at Jenson's house as we took the Stadium Wireless car across the border for it's first European adventure.
The drive was a very straightforward one and our only drama came when we stopped at Cardiff West Services. With the gang needing to relieve themselves and top up with a coffee and grub. The drama began as we queued at the Costa Coffee and we waited in a five person queue for fifteen minutes before finally getting to the head of the queue and then we had to wait an additional twenty minutes for the coffees to be made and handed over to us. It was a complete joke! The bloke behind the counter looked like Nigel from Eastenders and the other person was similar to a person that you would find on 'The Undatables' on Channel 4. As for the toilets and the other facilities, they were just disgusting!!!! We will never return to that hole again!
We arrived at just gone 2pm and parked down in the usual spot in the industrial estate before walking to the other side of the ground and on to complete our pie rating, but more of that later.

The team selection today was one that raised a few eyebrows in a game that we would ideally get a result from. There were two changes from the side that drew with Norwich last week. Fabio missed out with a back injury sustained against Norwich and SWP dropped to the bench. In came Nedum Onuoha and Jermaine Jenas.

In one other slight change from the Norwich game, Jamie Mackie adopted an unfamiliar role on the left wing and Adel Taarabt took the lone strikers role in what looked like a damage limitation formation to get us through the first half before being able to introduce Bobby Zamora to the game.
That tactic was blown out of the water just eight minutes into the game.
Nathan Dyer was given far too much space and took the option to shoot from distance. Cesar done his best to cope with the swerving ball and parried the ball but only as far as the onrushing, unchallenged Michu. The ball hit Michu, looped over Cesar and into the empty net. A stroke of luck for the home side but at least they had a striker taking a chance and getting the benefit of giving his side the opening goal.
From here Swansea dominated the midfield and really struggled to cope with the crisp passing that we are all too familiar with and saw our midfield chasing shadows.
When the R's had possession of the ball we were fine until we approached the half way line and then had no options in front of us as Taarabt was playing very deep and no-one was making runs beyond our front man.
Swansea picked apart the R's once again and made it 2-0 after 18 minutes.
Angel Rangel took advantage of Jamie Mackie falling asleep and allowing the Spaniard to waltz into the penalty area unchallenged. Rangel took aim at Cesar's goal and once again Cesar managed to make the save but saw Rangel following up to deliver the finish and take full advantage of some more poor R's defending.
Why were none of our defenders even chasing back in case of a parry from Cesar? He's good but he can't do it all for the defence!
Rangers' never even looked like getting into the game as Swansea just dominated all over the pitch and were toying with the R's until the half time whistle.

The half time stats summed it up for us, the R's had no shots and only completed seven successful passes in the attacking half during the first half. Tactically it was very wrong and Redknapp knew this. We witnessed Zamora spending the majority of the half time interval warming up along with Granero. Fianlly we would have a striker up front!

Zamora and Granero had an immediate impact for the R's and there was some hope just two minutes into the second half.
Taarabt's shot was parried by Vorm and Zamora was on hand to slot the ball under him and give the travelling support some hope of salvaging a result in Wales.
However that hope was very short lived and the Swans restored their two goal lead two minutes later.
Pablo Hernandez started dancing around Nedum Onuoha and remained unchallenged until he got within shooting distance and somehow managed to roll the ball into the far corner despite being surrounded by R's defenders. Another poor goal from our point of view!!
On 60 minutes the R's fans were absolutely fuming, courtesy of our good friend and referee for the day Neil Swarbrick.
Swarbrick has been at the centre of controversy in a number of games that he has refereed for us and has always ensured that we have ended up on the wrong side of these decisions.
The first decision that showed that we would probably get this was a booking dished out to Chris Samba when he went shoulder to shoulder with a Swansea player, with the end result being the Swansea player bouncing off the beast and falling to the floor, earning a free kick.
The second one was after he booked Adel Taarabt for kicking the ball away (correct decision) but then Taarabt got pushed around by a Swansea player and does not get punished for it! We're all told you cannot raise your hands but maybe it's just a ule that's used when a referee feels like it?
Anyway this decision that I'm about to describe is just shocking.
Townsend whipped in a great ball from the left and Zamora was always going to win the header against Ashley Williams, however the Swansea captain raised his arm and punched the ball clear. It wasn't even a difficult decision to make, it should have been a penalty to the R's and a chance to get back into the game, however our "friend" Mr Swarprick turned a blind eye and carried on as if nothing happened. I'm completely unsure how the linesman failed to spot it! It will be the most blatant and clearest handball you will see on Match of the Day tonight.
This took the fizzle out of the R's momentum and Swansea again started to take control of the game.
Nathan Dyer played a perfect ball through the R's defence and Michu very easily got the better of Samba as he brushed him off and then flicked the ball past Cesar to put the game to bed and seal the three points for the home team.

The game was lost in the first half for us as the tactics were wrong from the very beginning. We cannot expect to survive in the Premier League if we do not play with a recognized striker from the beginning of a game. I know Remy was not fit and Zamora can only play 45 minutes maximum currently, so why not start with Jay Bothroyd as he can hold the ball up and bring players into the game. It's no good playing Taarabt up there on his own as he needs players to move in front of him in order to make him fully effective.
Once Zamora came on we looked a different team and had the option to play the ball into him and aim at him when we got into wide areas.
I cannot take anything away from Swansea, they pressed the ball well, retained possession and took the chances that they created. We could have been a lot further behind at half time and on our way down the M4 very early!

Swansea City

  • 01 Vorm
  • 04 Chico (Bartley - 33' )
  • 06 Williams
  • 22 Rangel
  • 33 Davies Booked
  • 09 Michu (Moore - 80' )
  • 11 Pablo
  • 12 Dyer
  • 15 Routledge (Agustien - 62' )
  • 20 De Guzman
  • 24 Ki Sung-Yeung


  • 25 Tremmel
  • 02 Bartley
  • 21 Tiendalli
  • 26 Agustien
  • 14 Lamah
  • 17 Shechter
  • 19 Moore

Queens Park Rangers

  • 33 Julio Cesar
  • 03 Traore Booked
  • 05 Samba Booked
  • 06 Hill
  • 15 Onuoha
  • 04 Derry (Granero - 46' )
  • 10 Taarabt Booked
  • 16 Jenas (Wright-Phillips - 68' )
  • 29 Townsend
  • 40 M'bia
  • 12 Mackie (Zamora - 46' )


  • 01 Green
  • 21 Ben-Haim
  • 07 Park Ji-sung
  • 11 Wright-Phillips
  • 14 Granero
  • 25 Zamora
  • 37 Bothroyd

The Man of the Match was a simple choice for the gang as a clean sweep was given to Bobby Zamora's impact on the second half and giving us some hope of getting a result today.

Just to top up our day we got back to Jenson's car to find a parking ticket on his window! Our day could not of got worse!! The two best results we had today was the fine only being £35 and the fact we got back to Maidenhead at 7pm! Good driving Jenson!

We now get back to the pie rating.
Jenson had the Chicken Curry pie - Cold, too much pastry and very salty -6
Lee had the Steak and Ale pie - Pastry too tough but a very nice, distinctive ale taste. - 6.5
Luke had the Chicken Curry pie - Warm, nice flavour - 7

This gives Swansea an average of 6.5.
West Ham are still leading the way in the pie ratings.

Lofty will return with the home report from our game against Man United in two weeks time!
Enjoy the break!

Keep The Faith, we can still do this!!

Monday, February 04, 2013

The Pies The Limit...

Lofty Heights were delighted to hear, via Twitter, that we had a nice mention in Saturday's West Ham Official Match Programme. After some frantic panicking, Emily on Twitter kindly sent us the photo which was credit to our expert analysis of the West Ham Pies in our away day ratings.

Obviously, we were delighted that our efforts have received more good recognition and thought we would share with you all. Unfortunately, Sam and Jess were not mentioned this time as they as they don't rate the pies, but I can assure them that no one gets forgotten about here at LH and we are all in this together.

Personally, I don't think West Ham's will be beaten now, so it's up to the other grounds that we visit to step up to the hotplate...

Come on you R'ssssssssssss!!!

Saturday, February 02, 2013

Nor-t Our Day

The R's had home comforts in the early kick off of the day as they took on Norwich City in front of the SKY cameras.

With it being an early alarm call Jess and myself made our way up to Loftus Road in good time to grab a pre-match nandos to warm us up ahead of the cold 90 minutes we were about to endure.
After a mad rush to munch through our food, we got to the ground with twenty minutes to spare, however with the queue I had to wait in to get into the Loft to meet the gang, I just about managed to get to my seat as the team was being announced.
I met Lofty in our seats, but we were missing Jenson as he is away in America for his annual holiday and PK was absent through work duties.

Two of our transfer deadline signings Christopher Samba and Andros Townsend made their debuts in the place of Nedum Onuoha (injured) and Ryan Nelsen (departed). Mackie and SWP also returned to the starting line up in the place of Loic Remy and Esteban Granero.

The first half a very tight affair with very little to choose between the sides but the R's had the better of the chances.
Grant Holt was up to his old tricks very early on as he took an easy tumble and left a divot in the ground where the fat b@stard landed.
Taarabt was very lively as we would expect him to be and made his own chances that were lacking in quality to test Norwich 'keeper Mark Bunn.
It was proving to be tough to break down the Norwich backline and it was easy to see why. Mackie, who was playing as the lone striker, was drifting wide too often and when Townsend and SWP were getting in good positions out wide but had no-one to aim at when the opportunity to cross came along.
SWP had the best chance of the half when Townsend's ball found SWP on the edge of the penalty area and managed to wriggle free but his shot ended up going wide when he really could've taken another touch before taking aim.

At half time the gang were fully assembled at the bottom of the concourse, with Sam, Luke, Lorna, Perry, Michael and Stedders all sharing the same opinion that Mackie offered us very little and a change needed to be made in order to make us a more attacking threat.

Five minutes into the second half that change to make us more of a threat was made as Bobby Zamora replaced SWP. This was a bit harsh on SWP as he did not do anything wrong in his 50 minutes.
Zamora instantly made an impact as his physical presence gave the R's someone to aim at and use him as a target man for everyone to feed off.
Five minutes after Zamora's introduction the R's were given a glorious chance to score.
Zamora's flick on was chased by Mackie and the R's striker took the ball beyond Bunn and was brought down by the Norwich 'keeper and the referee pointed to the spot!!! Our second penalty of the season, ironically the last one was against Norwich at Carrow Road at the start of the season.
Adel Taarabt picked the ball up, placed on the spot and placed his effort in the bottom right corner...... only to find Bunn pull off a fantastic save to deny the R's of a deserved lead.
The R's created further chances with Clint Hill, Zamora and Samba all placing headers wide of the target.
At the other end Cesar was not the busiest 'keeper but when he was called upon he was in superb form.
Firstly he saved from point blank range from Wes Hoolahan and then pulled off a fantastic save from Snodgrass' long range effort and managed to just push it around the post. From our angle it looked like it had just crept in but when we saw the ball roll onto the back of the net.
Rangers' had the final chance of the game as the superb and exciting Andros Townsend let fly from 25 yards and it looked as if it was going to hit the top corner of the net but once again Bunn threw himself and somehow managed to pull off another fantastic save.

This was very much so a case of a missed opportunity for the R's to claw back some ground on the teams above us and get some momentum going as we look to drag ourselves out of the relegation dogfight.
The news of Loic Remy pulling his groin is a massive blow to the R's attacking options as we now have Mackie who tries his heart out but lacks ability, Zamora and Bothroyd are very similar players that can hold the ball up and get other players involved and then we have DJ Campbell that is a livewire and offers a lot of threat to defenders, unfortunately it looks as if he's on his way to Blackburn on loan.

Our Man of the Match today was a very easy decision for the gang to make. Andros Townsend was superb from the first whistle until the last and was a threat every time he was in possession of the ball. He is going to be a very exciting player for us to watch over the next couple of months and I cannot wait to see more next weekend. A very worthy LH Man of the Match this week!

Queens Park Rangers

  • 33 Julio Cesar
  • 03 Traore
  • 05 Samba
  • 06 Hill Booked
  • 20 Fabio (Ben-Haim - 74' )
  • 04 Derry
  • 10 Taarabt
  • 11 Wright-Phillips (Zamora - 54' )
  • 29 Townsend
  • 40 M'bia Booked (Jenas - 69' )
  • 12 Mackie


  • 01 Green
  • 21 Ben-Haim
  • 07 Park Ji-sung
  • 14 Granero
  • 16 Jenas
  • 25 Zamora
  • 37 Bothroyd

Norwich City

  • 28 Bunn Booked
  • 02 R Martin
  • 05 Bassong Booked
  • 06 Turner Booked
  • 18 Garrido Booked
  • 04 Johnson
  • 07 Snodgrass
  • 12 Pilkington (E Bennett - 24' )
  • 14 Hoolahan (Becchio - 88' )
  • 27 Tettey Booked
  • 09 Holt


  • 42 Camp
  • 03 Whittaker
  • 24 R Bennett
  • 08 Howson
  • 17 E Bennett
  • 10 Jackson
  • 19 Becchio

Next week we travel to Swansea and will report what we see in Sunny Wales.

Keep the faith!!