|Memories of Premier League opening night in W12 as Râs face Saints â history|
Wed 14th Nov 2012 23:17 by Clive Whittingham
As QPR prepare to face Southampton at Loftus Road this weekend, LFW looks back at the first ever Premier League game at Loftus Road which featured these two, as well as recounting the career of Colin Clarke who played for both clubs.
Southampton 0 QPR 0, Saturday March 14, 2009, Championship
The last time these sides met their respective runs of form were almost as bad as they are going into this weekend’s game. Southampton were about to be relegated after a raft of cost cuts had seen the first team squad merged with the academy one and put under the guidance of little-known Dutchman Jan Poortvliet while Rangers were just starting to find out what they’d let themselves in for by having Flavio Briatore as chairman. Paulo Sousa was the second QPR manager of the season already when the R’s travelled south in March and a dire goalless draw here in which literally nothing of any note happened whatsoever extended the Hoops run of games without a win to nine. They subsequently won two and drew one of the next three but Sousa was sacked anyway after making comments to supporters outside the stadium about the club’s transfer and medical policy that were subsequently posted onto message boards.
Southampton: Davis 6, James 6, Saeijs 6, Perry 6, Skacel 7, Lallana 6 (Thomson 74, 6), Gillett 6, McGoldrick 7, Surman 6, Euell 5, Saganowski 5 (Wright-Phillips 77, 6)
Subs Not Used: Forecast, Wotton, Liptak
Booked: James (foul), McGoldrick (foul)
QPR: Cerny 6, Ramage 7, Stewart 6, Gorkss 7, Connolly 6, Ephraim 6 (Taarabt 78, 7), Miller 5 (German 71, 6), Lopez 6 (Mahon 87, -), Leigertwood 6, Routledge 5, Blackstock 5
Subs Not Used: Hall, Alberti
Booked: Gorkss (kicking ball away), Stewart (obstructing goalkeeper)
QPR 4 Southampton 1, Sunday September 14, 2008, Championship
Easy to forget given how short his reign as QPR manager was, but Iain Dowie actually won eight of his 15 matches in football’s hottest seat. The best of those arguably came against Southampton at Loftus Road live on Sky. Dexter Blackstock slammed in from close range against his former club in the opening minute and when Jan Poortvliet’s naïve young Saints team was reduced to ten men before half time – debutant Olly Lancashire dismissed for a rash lunge – the points seemed assured. But the visitors took the game to rangers after half time and scored a fabulous equaliser thanks to a mazy dribble and finish from Adam Lallana. The Loftus Road faithful are used to seeing their team crumble under the pressure of such situations but to be fair the R’s rallied, took the lead thanks to a header from a suspiciously offside Damion Stewart, and then picked off the short-handed visitors on the counter with further goals for Blackstock and Patrick Agyemang.
QPR: Cerny 6, Ramage 5, Stewart 7, Connolly 7, Delaney 7, Mahon 5, Leigertwood 7, Ephraim 6 (Rowlands 8), Parejo 6 (Agyemang 8), Cook 6, Blackstock 8
Subs Not Used: Camp, Gorkss, Balanta
Booked: Leigertwood (foul), Delaney (foul)
Goals: Blackstock 1 (assisted Mahon), Stewart 63 (assisted Rowlands), Blackstock 77 (assisted Agyemang), Agyemang 90 (assisted Cook)
Southampton: Davis 9, Wotton 6, Lancashire 4, Cork 5, Gillett 6, James 6, Surman 6, Holmes 6 (Dyer 23, 7), Schneiderlin 6 (Pekhart 69, 6), Lallana 7, McGoldrick 6
Subs Not Used: Bialkowski, Perry, John
Sent Off: Lancashire (30) (two footed tackle)
Booked: Schneiderlin (foul), Dyer (foul)
Goals: Lallana 53 (unassisted)
Southampton 2 QPR 3, Saturday February 9, 2008, Championship
By the time Rangers went down to St Mary’s for the return fixture in 2007/08, they’d changed manager, chairman and essentially the entire team from the first meeting between the sides earlier in the season. Luigi De Canio was in the hot seat and had just completed a busy transfer window of six new signings. One of those, Patrick Agyemang from Preston, was in the midst of a once-in-a-career run of eight goals from six starts and he got another two here along with a Martin Rowlands strike as Rangers recovered from conceding in the first minute of the game to eventually win 3-2.
Southampton: Davis 5, Thomas 4 (Viafara 52, 6), Powell 5, Davies 6, Wright 3, Hammill 7 (Saganowski 46, 6), Safri 5, Euell 4, Surman 7, Wright-Phillips 5 (Lallana 68, 6), John 6
Subs Not Used: Bialkowski, Idiakez
Sent Off: Safri (78) (violent conduct)
Booked: Powell (foul) , Viafara (foul)
Goals: Powell 1 (assisted Hammil), John 90 (assisted Viafara)
QPR: Camp 7, Mancienne 7, Rehman 8, Connolly 7, Delaney 8, Lee 6 (Buzsaky 46, 7), Mahon 7, Rowlands 8, Ephraim 7 (Leigertwood 83, -),Vine 8, Agyemang 8 (Blackstock 79, 7)
Subs Not Used: Pickens, Stewart
Booked: Buzsaky (dissent), Delaney (foul)
Goals: Rowlands 38 (assisted Vine), Agyemang 45 (assisted Ephraim), 60 (assisted Camp)
QPR 0 Southampton 3, Saturday September 1, 2007, Championship
QPR’s lousy start to the 2007/08 season continued with a comprehensive 3-0 home defeat by Southampton, but the game was completely overshadowed by the death f young striker Ray Jones the week before. Rangers’ previous match away at Burnley had been postponed at the eleventh hour after Jones was killed in a car crash the night before and this was the first time his team mates took to the field. Southampton will forever be fondly remembered for the respectful behaviour of their players and fans on the day, but once the play was underway they were streets ahead of their bereaved hosts. Two goals Grzegorz Rasiak and another for Bradley Wright-Phillips sealed a 3-0 win that could have been at least twice as heavy had the Saints really wanted to twist the knife.
QPR: Camp 7, Curtis 4, Stewart 3, Mancienne 6 (Cullip 84, -), Barker 3, Rowlands 4, Leigertwood 5, Bolder 4, Ephraim 4, Blackstock 4 (Nygaard 69, 6), Sahar 4 (Nardiello 69, 5).
Subs Not Used: Cole, Bignot.
Booked: Camp (foul), Cullip (foul).
Southampton: Davis N/A, Wright 7, Thomas 7, Makin 8, Vignal 7, Dyer 9, Viafara 8, Safri 7, Surman 7 (Euell 64, 7), Wright-Phillips 8 (Saganowski 73, 7), Rasiak 8 (John 83, -)
Subs Not Used: Bialkowski, Ostlund.
Goals: Rasiak 18, 45, Wright-Phillips 49.
Head to Head >>> QPR wins 26 >>> Draws 21 >>> Southampton wins 26
2008/09 Southampton 0 QPR 0
2008/09 QPR 4 Southampton 1 (Blackstock 2, Agyemang, Stewart)
2007/08 Southampton 2 QPR 3 (Agyemang 2, Rowlands)
2007/08 QPR 0 Southampton 3
2006/07 QPR 0 Southampton 2
2006/07 Southampton 1 QPR 2 (Blackstock, Jones)
2005/06 QPR 1 Southampton 0 (Langley)
2005/06 Southampton 1 QPR 1 (Shittu)
1995/96 QPR 3 Southampton 0 (Brevett, Dichio, Gallen)
1995/96 Southampton 2 QPR 0
1994/95 Southampton 2 QPR 1 (Ferdinand)
1994/95 QPR 2 Southampton 2 (Barker, Gallen)
1993/94 Southampton 0 QPR 1 (Ferdinand)
1993/94 QPR 2 Southampton 1 (Penrice, Wilson)
1992/93 Southampton 1 QPR 2 (Sinton, Channing)
1992/93 QPR 3 Southampton 1 (Ferdinand 2, Bardsley)
1991/92 Southampton 2 QPR 1 (Ferdinand)
1991/92 Southampton 2 QPR 0*
1991/92 QPR 2 Southampton 2 (Barker, Thompson)
1990/91 QPR 2 Southampton 1 (Ferdinand 2)
1990/91 Southampton 3 QPR 1 (Falco)
1989/90 Southampton 0 QPR 2 (Maddix, Wegerle)
1989/90 QPR 1 Southampton 4 (T Francis)
1988/89 Southampton 1 QPR 4 (Falco 2, M Allen, Barker)
1988/89 QPR 0 Southampton 1
1987/88 QPR 3 Southampton 0 (Bannister, Falco, Fereday)
1987/88 Southampton 0 QPR 1 (Brock)
1986/87 QPR 2 Southampton 1 (Byrne, Bannister)
1986/87 Southampton 5 QPR 1 (M Allen)
1985/86 QPR 0 Southampton 2
1985/86 Southampton 3 QPR 0
1984/85 QPR 0 Southampton 4
1984/85 QPR 4 Southampton 0**(Fenwick 2, Waddock, Neill)
1984/85 QPR 0 Southampton 0**
1984/85 Southampton 1 QPR 1**(Fenwick)
1984/85 Southampton 1 QPR 1 (Fereday)
1983/84 QPR 4 Southampton 0 (Wicks, Mickelwhite, C Allen, Waddock)
1983/84 Southampton 0 QPR 0
1978/79 QPR 0 Southampton 1
1978/79 Southampton 1 QPR 1 (Goddard)
1973/74 Southampton 2 QPR 2 (Bowles, Francis)
1973/74 QPR 1 Southampton 1 (Givens)
1968/69 Southampton 3 QPR 2 (Marsh, Bridges)
1968/69 QPR 1 Southampton 1 (L Allen)
1959/60 QPR 0 Southampton 1
1959/60 Southampton 2 QPR 1 (Bedford)
1958/59 Southampton 1 QPR 0
1958/59 QPR 0 Southampton 1*
1958/59 QPR 2 Southampton 2 (Longbottom, Petchley)
1957/58 QPR 3 Southampton 2 (Longbottom 2, Woods)
1957/58 Southampton 5 QPR 0
1956/57 Southampton 1 QPR 2 (Hellawell, Longbottom)
1956/57 QPR 1 Southampton 2 (Hellawell)
1955/56 QPR 4 Southampton 0 (Shepherd 2, Smith, Angell)
1955/56 Southampton 4 QPR 0
1954/55 Southampton 2 QPR 2 (Clark, Shepherd)
1954/55 QPR 2 Southampton 2 (Smith, Wilkins og)
1953/54 Southampton 3 QPR 1 (Hawkins)
1953/54 QPR 0 Southampton 1
1951/52 QPR 2 Southampton 1 (Addinall, Hold)
1951/52 Southampton 1 QPR 1 (Smith)
1950/51 Southampton 2 QPR 2 (Addinall 2)
1950/51 QPR 2 Southampton 0 (Farrow, Smith)
1949/50 Southampton 1 QPR 2 (Neary 2)
1949/50 QPR 1 Southampton 0 (Hudson)
1948/49 QPR 1 Southampton 3 (Pointon)
1948/49 Southampton 3 QPR 0
1945/46 QPR 4 Southampton 3*(Addinall 3, Stock)
1945/46 Southampton 0 QPR 1* (Addinall)
1921/22 Southampton 1 QPR 1 (Birch)
1921/22 QPR 2 Southampton 2 (Birch, Chandler)
1920/21 QPR 0 Southampton 0
1920/21 Southampton 2 QPR 2 (Manning, Gregory)
* - FA Cup
** - League Cup
QPR 3 Southampton 1, Wednesday August 19, 1992, Premiership
Southampton were the opponents for QPR’s first home game of the inaugural Premier League back in 1992. The R’s faced a daunting start to the campaign, with the first ever Premiership Monday Night Football game featuring them and Man City leaving just 48 hours to prepare for the visit of the Saints. By the following Saturday they’d played three further times too.
Perhaps fatigue was a factor as Southampton, who’d started their season with a 0-0 draw at home to Spurs, took an early lead. Mickey Adams, better known as a lower-league manager these days, whipped in a left footed free kick that caused a scramble in the six yard box before Matthew Le Tissier slammed in his customary goal against the Super Hoops.
Rangers were dominant thereafter but found Tm Flowers in inspired form in the Southampton goal. They finally broke through around the hour mark when powerful running through the centre of the Saints’ defence from les Ferdinand teed up a chance for Andy Sinton to venture into the penalty box from wide on the left and drill a low shot on goal. Flowers, once again, was equal to it but the rebound fell plum to Ferdinand who had followed up on the chance and he smashed in an equaliser in front of the jubilant Lower Loft.
If the celebrations for that goal had been raucous, it’s hard to think of the word to describe the scene when, minutes later, David Bardsley stepped up and sent a shot that was more ballistic missile than free kick screaming into the top corner of Flowers’ net to give the R’s the lead for the first time in the game.
The victory was sealed when Dennis Bailey took his man to the byline and whipped an undefendable ball across the face of goal for Ferdinand to tap into the empty net from a yard out.
Rangers went on to finish fifth that season, London’s top club in the first year of the Premier League. Southampton, typically for the time, struggled against relegation for much of the campaign before surviving by one place and one point from Crystal Palace.
QPR: Roberts, Bardsley, Peacock, McDonald, Wilson, Impey, Holloway, Wilkins, Sinton, Bailey, Ferdinand (Thompson)
Southampton: Flowers, Dodd, Hall, Wood, Adams, Le Tissier, Hurlock, Cockerill, Benali, Speedie, Dixon
Colin Clarke >>> Southampton 1986-1989 >>> QPR 1989-1990
Colin Clarke is a bit of an odd one, as far as QPR history goes. He came, he scored frequently, and then he left. The QPR fans didn’t much like him, and he didn’t much like being at QPR.
This despite him scoring a last minute winner at Newcastle on his debut in a relegation six-pointer against the team manager Jim Smith had walked out on QPR earlier in the season to join. He then scored a week later on his home debut as well, curling home a late free kick to snatch a draw at home to Luton Town. He subsequently scored in a 4-3 home win against Wimbledon and a 3-0 success against Coventry. The following season he opened his account with an equaliser at Stamford Bridge against Chelsea.
So here we have a player who arrived, albeit for a then club record fee of £800,000, at a time when QPR were struggling, scored crucial goals to lift us up the league, scored goals to prevent defeats against Luton and Chelsea, and yet wasn’t some sort of folk hero. Having been signed originally by Trevor Francis he left at the end of the 1989/90 season to join Portsmouth for £400,000 after Francis had been replaced by Don Howe.
Clarke was originally a trainee with Ipswich but began his career with Fourth Division Peterborough United in 1981/82. Some 18 goals and 84 appearances later he moved to fellow bottom division side Tranmere Rovers in 1984 and scored 22 goals in his first season as the Merseysiders narrowly missed out on promotion. While Tranmere weren’t able to take up a spot in the Third Division, Clarke was thanks to a transfer to Bournemouth where again he was prolific (26 goals in 46 appearances in 1985/86) but again the team narrowly missed out on a promotion.
Once more a team in a higher division came calling for his services regardless. This time it was Southampton – a fine side at the time with the likes of the Wallace brothers and Matthew Le Tissier progressing through the ranks – and he was the Saints top scorer in the First Division in 1986-87 with 20 goals. Three of those came on the opening day of the season when QPR lost 5-1 at The Dell on David Seaman’s debut for the club. Another 16 goals followed in 1987/88 but he lost form and fitness the following year and was transferred to Loftus Road.
It’s maybe this fitness issue that prevented him from being a roaring success in W12. I turned to our message board earlier this week for some background and received the following posts:
“Clarke got a lot of unfair stick. My Dad used to scream “take that piano off your back” as he ran so slow it was if, errrrr, well he was carrying a piano on his back. He was a decent finisher, came in under Trevor Francis and his goals kept us up including the winner at Newcastle when the Martin Allen thing kicked off. He replaced Bannister though and for us kids of the 1980's it was a bit like replacing Ferdinand with Dichio, although the later was fine and scored goals he was never as good as the previous guy.” – Dave Barton
“Colin Clarke, if memory serves me well, was a bit of a Heidar-lite...'cept he wasn't that light, always looked a bit on the tubby side to me. A poor man's Mark Falco may be another comparison. He played in a less than exciting R’s team (though what would we give for its top flight mid-table security now), and coming after Bannister and Byrne but before Les, is understandably forgotten when strikers from the 80s & 90s are recalled.” – Nick Gordon-Brown
“My best memory of Colin Clarke is in a home game against Norwich where he got a last minute winner - went in two footed in a 50-50 with Bryan Gunn, took him out and tapped into an empty net. Norwich proceeded to go mental, but the goal stood. Would never have been even close these days...” – QueensParker
“Colin Clarke scored a hat trick against us on Seaman’s debut. He was also the boo boys favourite target at one point and was the reason for my only fisty cuffs at football when some idiot booed him before he even got on the pitch at Highbury. He also once won me a tidy wedge when he slid in in Bryan Gunn of Norwich, stole the ball off him, casually walked the ball into an empty net to win the game 2-1 which I had done on my coupon.” – Loftboy
“Colin Clarke was always known as "Burgers Clarkie". I vaguely remember a game where he was lumbering down the flanks, forlornly carrying his excess timber down the channels in an aimless pursuit of a long ball. Some guy near me shouted out "Clarkey...Clarkey...burgers Clarkey!" in the same way you'd try and coax a dog to come to you. It was a very funny moment, and burnt on my memory.” – Real Loftus
Clarke was also a Northern Ireland international, amassing 38 caps and 13 goals between 1986 and 1993. His tally puts him one ahead of Iain Dowie and Gerry Armstrong, four ahead of George Best but 23 behind David Healy in the nation’s national goalscoring records.
After leaving for Portsmouth he played on for another three years, reaching an FA Cup semi-final in 1992 but losing to Liverpool on penalties, and then retired in 1993 due to a knee injury.
Since then he has embarked on an eclectic coaching career based mostly in the US with first the Richmond Kickers, then San Diego Flash and then MLS side FC Dallas with whom he won the Western Conference and was beaten in the play offs in both 2005 and 2006.He then coached the Virginia Beach mariners for four months until the club folded and most recently he’s been in charge of the Puerto Rico Islanders (club side) and the Puerto Rico national team.
Others >>>Jason Puncheon, Southampton 2010-present, QPR (loan) 2011 >>> Martin Cranie, Southampton 2004-2007, QPR (loan) 2007 >>> Fitz Hall, Southampton 2003-2004, QPR 2008-2012 >>> Inigo Idiakez, Southampton 2006-2008, QPR (loan) 2007 >>> Dexter Blackstock, Southampton 2003-2006, QPR 2006-2009 >>> Paul Jones, Southampton 1997-2004, QPR 2006-2007 >>> Leon Best, Southampton 2004-2007, QPR (loan) 2004-2007 >>> Andrew Davies, QPR (loan) 2005, Southampton 2007-2008 >>> Christer Warren, Southampton 1995-1997, QPR 2000-2002 >>> Peter Crouch, QPR 2000-2001, Southampton 2004-2005 >>>Iain Dowie, Southampton 1991-1995, QPR 1998-2001, (manager) 2008 >>> Paul Murray, QPR 1996-2001, Southampton 2001 >>> Nigel Quashie, QPR 1995-1998, 2010, Southampton 2005-2006 >>>Mark Hughes, Southampton 1998-2000, QPR (manager) 2012-present >>> Jim Magilton, Southampton 1994-1997, QPR (manager) 2009 >>> Neil Ruddock, Southampton 1989-1992, QPR (loan) 1998 >>> Tim Flowers, Southampton 1986-1993, QPR (coach) 2008 >>> Mark Dennis, Southampton 1983-1987, QPR 1987-1988 >>> Sammy Lee, QPR 1986-1987, Southampton 1990 >>> Tony Sealy, Southampton 1977-1979, QPR 1981-1983 >>> John Burridge, QPR 1980-1982, Southampton 1987-1989 >>> Frank Saul, Southampton 1968-1970, QPR 1970-1972 >>> Joe Mallett, QPR 1937-1947, Southampton 1947-1953 >>> Len Hill, QPR 1920-1925, Southampton 1925-1926 >>> Herbert Lock, Southampton 1907-1909, QPR 1921-1922 >>> Albert Brown, Southampton 1901-1902, QPR 1902-1904
With credit to Bushman on QPR Report for some of the older ones.
Pictures – Action Images