Faith Restored as QPR Remove Tractors Wheels...
Ipswich 1-3 QPR
A superb second half performance gave QPR an impressive away win, running out 3-1 winners at Portman Road this afternoon..
With it not being the furthest away game to travel to, I was picked up by Jenson and PK at 11 and I must say, it was an absolute breeze of a journey which saw us in Ipswich town centre at around 12.30 and that was after a quick coffee stop. After parking up, we met up with Lee and Jess before walking round to the opposite side of the ground to collect our tickets. Unfortunately, Sam and Luke decided to give this one a miss today due to family commitments. We were in the ground in plenty of time for refreshments and a very enjoyable catch up.
Onto the game and what I must say, looking a very negative R's line up went about their task against a very much inform Ipswich who were unbeaten in 9 games and had sneaked into the top six almost under the radar. As a spectacle, the half was very forgettable. The home side had the first real chance when Joey Barton eventually cleared from a manic goalmouth scramble, before the ball came almost straight back in, only to see Chambers balloon over the bar after being closed down by Clint Hill.
At the other end, Rangers had plenty of the ball but again, were struggling to create chances. A superb Gary O'Neil low cross was begging to be tapped in but avoided everyone. O'Neill again, crossed from the right to find Austin who's headed saw Gerken pull off a remarkable point blank save in the Ipswich goal. In the stands, Jenson's hands were already on my shoulders celebrating, we were sure it was going to hit the net, it really was some save!!
On a busy concourse at half time, I think it was safe to say there was plenty of concern around after what was overall a very forgettable first half. It's also safe to say that the majority of a very healthy R's away following, didn't expect what was coming next in the second half..
And it all started on the 52nd minute when Niko Kranjcar picked up Ekotto's throw in, skipped past 3 players and into the box, before firing a low shot into the corner..
14 minutes later, the lead was doubled when Austin's effort from outside the box, was parried by Gerken, into path of the oncoming Gary O'Neill who calmly slotted the ball home for his first R's goal...
A further 8 minutes later, the Rangers end was in full celebration again, when Clint Hill's long clearance from the back was not dealt with by Tommy Smith, letting substitute Traore nip in behind before stabbing the ball into the net.. another with his first goal for the club!
The R's were in complete control now and the away end were well on their way to celebrating what was going to be a very good away win. In stoppage time, Tommy Smith redeemed his earlier mistake by volleying home superbly from a corner in stoppage time. Little consolation for the home side and even less for Lee and Jess, seeing their 25/1 3-0 bet go down..
Queens Park Rangers
- 01 Green
- 02 Simpson
- 39 Assou-Ekotto
- 17 Barton (Henry - 40' )
- 05 Dunne
- 06 Hill
- 36 O'Neil
- 10 Carroll
- 09 Austin
- 19 Kranjcar (Phillips - 85' )
- 35 Benayoun (Traore - 68' )
- 03 Traore
- 07 Phillips
- 08 Johnson
- 11 Wright-Phillips
- 15 Onuoha
- 20 Henry
- 26 Murphy
Man of the Match
So refreshing again to have so much choice but we whittled in down to just three in the end. Lee picked out Gary O'Neil as his choice with Jenson choosing Niko Kranjcar. But with 3 votes, from myself, PK and a late call from Jess which clinched it, todays award goes to Richard Dunne.. Dunne Dunne Dunne Dunne.. (sorry, couldn't resist!)
AwayDay Pie Rating
The top mark came from PK who rated his Chicken and Bacon at a 9, Jenson followed with his Chicken Balti getting an 8, disappointed that no fork was supplied. The no fork option gave positive feedback from Lee from his Chicken Balti as it was consumed with little mess or effort, awarding a 7. The latter could not be said for myself who was somewhat disappointed with the more onion, less chicken filling and with no fork, managed to spill a big lump down the front of my coat - 6
Giving the Ipswich Pies a very respectable rating of 7.5/10
In summary, with us missing last weeks Cup Tie, this was the first awayday of 2014 for us and what an enjoyable one it was too. As mentioned, at half time I don't think any of us could see what was coming which was a good, positive, attacking display from the R's, which certainly brought it's rewards. Long may it continue...
Despite the traffic being heavy getting out of Ipswich, it was another breeze of a journey home, Ipswich is certainly up there with one of my favourite away days.
Lee will return with one of his memorable reports next weekend as we take on Huddersfield at Loftus Road.
Enjoy the rest of your weekend...
Come on you R'sssssssssssssssssss!!