Charlton 1-0 QPR
QPR turned in probably their worst performance of the season as struggling Charlton grabbed an injury time winner at the Valley this afternoon, in front of 3,500 travelling R's fans who deserved so much better...
Being a London Derby, it was a late start to proceedings as I was picked up by Jenson and PK at around 12.30. After a slowish but easy journey, taking in the sights of the Olympic Park, we arrived in good time, parking at the local Makro and then taking the short walk to the Stadium to join Lee and Jess who were doing a bit of ticket touting outside. As kick off approached we went in to join Sam and Luke before queuing for some refreshments. But after seeing the line up, we were all pretty pleased as it appeared we had ditched the 4-4-2 formation that was clearly not working and reverted back to a 4-5-1, or so it appeared...
Queens Park Rangers
- 01 Green
- 18 Hughes
- 03 Traore
- 06 Hill
- 05 Dunne
- 15 Onuoha
- 16 Jenas
- 10 Carroll (Benayoun - 81' )
- 14 Doyle (Maiga - 70' )
- 23 Hoilett (Keane - 59' )
- 04 Morrison
- 12 Keane
- 13 Yun
- 20 Henry
- 26 Murphy
- 35 Benayoun
- 36 O'Neil
- 40 Maiga
After a few half chances, Nedum Onuoha took the bull by the horns and went on a run, stepping past a few players before going over in the box from a Morrison challenge of which the referee quickly ruled out a penalty. The TV pictures showed although there was minimal contact, there was no case for a penalty and it was probably Nedum's momentum that took him over. And that was the first half..
With the away end bulging to capacity, we decided to stay in our seats and the taller ones amongst us, stand up and stretch our legs - the away end at Charlton really doesn't have people over 6ft tall in mind. To say it is a bit of a squeeze is an understatement and if you can get both arse cheeks on the chair and sit straight so the blood circulation isn't taken from your knees, you've had a result..
Like so many games before this season, we were all hoping for a much improved second half performance that would see us roar home to victory.. well, it didn't happen..
We still had lots of the ball and a baffling substitution of Keane on for Hoilett, gave us all hope of a better attacking threat.. it didn't happen. Although when the chance came, new loan signing, Ravel Morrison sliced the ball well wide when it looked easier to score. With the latest change ineffective, Redknapp removed Doyle and put on Maiga to try yet another attacking partnership. Shortly after we were almost gifted a lead, but we even managed to balls this one up - Charlton keeper Thuram-Ulien's clearance fell straight to Maiga, who took the ball round the keeper at a tight angle, had control of the ball yet after seeing the onrushing Keane coming in for the inevitable tap in, let the ball drag out of play.. absolutely unbelievable!!
Plenty of frustration followed as Charlton were not in this game at all but Rangers just could not step up a gear and find anyway through - with minutes to go, Traore found space on the left, crossed into the box, finding Morrison who saw the ball late and the ball bounced off him and into the keepers arms, at this point, I think it is safe to say we had all accepted a draw.
But the home side then smelt blood and Adjarevic's effort was superbly saved by Green in stoppage time and from the resulting corner, the inevitable happened - Johnnie Jackson arrived unchallenged at the far post to head down, through the legs of Green and into the net - From there PK was bulldozing his way down the row and towards the exit, followed swiftly by Jenson. I said a quick goodbye to Lee and Jess before joining the thousands of furious R's fans clambering for the exit..
Man of the Match
Although there is a couple of mentions for Rob Green from Lee and PK, I flately refused to take any nominations from the gang at all - happily enough, I had no disagreement from the rest of the gang so this weeks award is N/A
Away Day Pie Rating
After royally being mucked about at one kiosk, we were sent to the other side of the stand as we were told we could get pies from there - on arrival found they did not do pies and it was Cornish pasties or hot dogs only which gives Charlton an away day Pie Rating of 0/10.
However, not wanting to be too harsh, myself, Lee and Jenson sampled the mass, dry, pastry filled pasties and voted a 4, 3 and 4 respectively, giving Charlton a Pasty rating of 3.66/10
In summary, I think it now high time for a rant! Now, personally I am not one of the doom and gloom, Harry out merchants you find on twitter after a bad R's result, but I am now extremely concerned. Myself and Lee discussed in the 2nd half where is a goal going to come from and I don't think Redknapp knows either. To change the formation 3 times in one game was quite ridiculous. Yes, we have had injuries to key players and yes, that pitch yesterday was dreadful, but we just cannot finish every match looking for excuses. At some point we are going to have to man up, stand up and get on with the job of which it seemed none of the Rangers players yesterday knew exactly what their jobs were??
When Neil Warnock took over a few years back, the first thing he mentioned is that we cannot build a team with so many loan players and it seems we have made the same mistakes again. With 8 currently on the books, we can only play 5 and Harry seems to be chopping and changing on a weekly basis. We were discussing on the way home that now we have had another bad result, will any more players be coming in this week? It's what Harry does - if it doesn't work, bring in more players! What about the young and hungry players doing well on loan around the leagues and from the EDL and reserve teams? Do they not deserve a chance? Well I guess if you are a club that wants to bring through some home grown players, then do not appoint Harry Redknapp as Manager.
Anyway, despite what I have just said, I am not one of the Harry out brigade but I along with many others, am extremely concerned with what I witnessed yesterday. Not one to quote stats either but fail to see how any team can dominate a game with 70 percent possession, but cannot muster a single shot on target!! But like always, we will all be there again next week to do it all over again..
Lee will return next week as we take on the self acclaimed, Champions of Europe, Leeds in yes, another live televised Sky Game.. it just gets better doesn't it??
Come on you R'ssssssss!!