And So the Season Ends...
QPR 1-1 Stoke
Firstly, apologies for the report being later than the norm, but seeing as it was the last game of the season, the gang thought we would have a few celebratory beverages to see the season off in style... and by the time I eventually got back to LH towers last night, I was in no fit state to start a write up, although it may have been amusing...
Like last Saturday at Wolves, it was nice to go to a game in a nice relaxed mood and be able to sit back and enjoy the day. However, it was a bit different for Stoke who needed at least a win to get into the play offs and even then, they had to rely on other results.
But Rangers were out to enjoy the day and were ahead on 6 minutes when Martin Rowlands free kick caught everyone out, including the Stoke keeper and found the bottom corner of the net.
Stoke looked little like play off contenders and didn't really get back into things until Lee Martin's blatant dive, saw Sam Timoska receive his second yellow card. As the clock ticked by, departing heroes Paul Furlong and Marc Bircham were brought on, but sadly, Stoke's pressure payed off on 84 minutes when Sidebe tapped home to level the scores.
As Stoke pushed for the winner, Rangers broke away and Furlong had a great chance to sign off his fantastic Rangers career by scoring the winning goal. But there was no sentiment at all from keeper Simonsen who charged his shot down when through on goal. Time ran out for Stoke and referee Kettle, who seemed intent on booking every single R's player, blew the final whistle on the season seconds later, and a result which meant we will also be seeing Stoke again next season along with their supporters, well, the normal 400 or so anyway...
QPR: Cole, Bignot, Bolder (Bircham 82), Rowlands, Shimmin, Bailey, Stewart, Timoska, Nygaard (R Jones 87), Blackstock (Furlong 75), Smith. Subs: P Jones, Moore.
Lofty's Man of the Match - Adam Bolder
So, we reach the end of another eventful season which has just about everything. But you just couldn't help leaving the ground with a tinge of sadness after not only not having any Rangers for a few months, but after saying an emotional goodbye to the players that are leaving, namely today, Paul Furlong and Marc Bircham. Thanks for the memories!!
It has also been a memorable season for Lofty Heights too as it ends its 3rd season. The new format was well received and the site has gone from strength to strength. It has also led to me writing for QPR Rivals/Loft for Words which I have thoroughly enjoyed and am happy to say that I will be continuing next season! Friends, both old and new have been continually reading and commenting to which makes doing this all worthwhile - I Thank You all for your continued support.
There is the gang, Corp/Al Murray, PK, DJ, Mick, California Hoop. Also, new friends Vickie, Joe and Paul from Leeds, Jilly, Cooch, Michael and Lee to name just a few. All of which make going to football the highlight of the week and make following Rangers such good fun. Not forgetting Mark and daughter Holly, who continues to be our good luck charm.
STAND UP AND MAKE SOME NOISE!!!