The True Meaning of Pain...
Villa 3-2 QPR
QPR suffered a heart breaking defeat at Villa Park yesterday, in what was the proverbial game of two halves. How we came away with nothing, I will never know...
Despite another away sell out, it was a depleted LH gang that took to the motorway to Birmingham, with the Ladies amongst us missing out, Sam at home with the twins and Jess and Lorna falling ill. I met PK and Jenson in Wycombe at around midday and had a trouble free journey to the Midlands. Unfortunately, we didn't see Lee and Luke on the motorway and met them inside. For the first time in as long as I can remember, I felt the nerves for the this one, but the gang and a huge away following all seemed in upbeat mood in what was a massive game for both clubs...
It was an edgy start for both sides with Villa starting slightly the better, but Rangers were soon getting into their stride. Sadly, they found Brad Guzan was to have the game of his life in the Villa goal. Bosingwa's free kick was met by Samba who looped a header towards goal - just as the away end was about to celebrate, the hand of the flying Guzan tipped the ball away! A quite unbelievable save! From the resulting corner and after a scramble in the box, the ball fell again to Chris Samba and this time, saw his side footed effort palmed away.
The R's were well in control now and on 23 minutes, deservedly took the lead - Jenas broke forward and found Zamora on the left, his shot was saved by the legs of Guzan, but Jenas was first to react to slide the rebound home.
Rangers were now going for it and Guzan again was at his best, tipping Remy's curling effort over the bar. A Bosingwa free kick then smacked the Villa post as half time approached and then disaster happened - Lowton's cross, found Agbonlahor unmarked to head home from close range. Serious questions were being asked about the defending but the reaction from the players seemed to indicate that they expected Cesar, who stayed rooted to his line, to come for the cross.
Onto the second half and Rangers looked a mere shadow of the team that had dominated the first. Villa were pouring forward and Cesar was called into action, tipping Weimann's header over the bar. As the R's failed to clear the resulting corner, the ball found it's way to the impressive Weimann, who turned and lashed home from 15 yards out. Again, perhaps Cesar could have done better as he got a good hand on the ball, but nevertheless, Villa were now ahead.
It was all Villa now, but on 73 minutes, Rangers broke away and levelled the scores - Townsend found Remy on the right, who found Park, who layed the ball off to Townsend who's slightly deflected effort flew into the corner of the net. The game was there for the taking now...
It was Villa again that got the upper hand with 8 minutes left - a defensive mix up saw Weimann get to the bye line, expose Cesar before cutting the ball back to find Benteke who side footed home. Almost instantly, Remy went close and perhaps should have done better, when unmarked heading down and wide.
But as the time ticked away, Rangers were pouring forward and with the very last kick of the game, Clint Hill fired a powerful 18 yard effort just over. It was close, but not close enough as the final whistle blew on a thrilling encounter, that left R's fans feeling mugged...
Queens Park Rangers
- 33 Julio Cesar
- 05 Samba
- 06 Hill
- 19 Bosingwa
- 20 Fabio (Taarabt - 66' )
- 07 Park Ji-sung (Mackie - 87' )
- 16 Jenas
- 29 Townsend
- 40 M'bia Booked
- 18 Remy
- 25 Zamora (Hoilett - 46' Booked )
- 26 Murphy
- 15 Onuoha
- 10 Taarabt
- 11 Wright-Phillips
- 14 Granero
- 23 Hoilett
- 12 Mackie
Awayday Pie Rating
Now, I think the word has got out as on arrival at the kiosk, the Villa staff wasted no time in telling us that their pies are homemade and not bought in.. So...
Lee - Chicken Balti - a firm 8
Lofty - Chicken Balti - very good, pastry tasty but flaky and has to be eaten with a fork - 8
Luke - Chicken and Mushroom - very nice - 9
and then the unusual...
PK - Chicken and Chorizo - lovely!! - 9
Jenson - Chicken and Chorizo - lovely but chicken a tad dry - 8.5
So, a valiant effort, but the Villa Pies get an expert rating of 8.5/10
Unfortunately, some over zealous policing after the game meant that we didn't get to say our goodbyes to Lee and Luke, but despite the torrential rain, the gang all got home safe and sound.
In summary, I, like Rangers fans everywhere feel completely shell shocked after this one and with the gap now 7 points, it's not looking great. But let's have this right, Rangers did not play badly yesterday and if it wasn't for Guzan, no one would complain if we were 3 or 4 up at half time. The goal on half time gave Villa a great lift and the second half was completely opposite to that of the first for QPR. But there is still plenty of football to be played and plenty of twists and turns ahead of us yet, we will have to see...
I will return after the Easter Break to review the Bank Holiday game against Fulham, but until then...
Keep The Faith!!! It's not over until it's over...
Come on you R'sssssssssssssss!!!