QPR has not scored this number of goals since the early 1980s and the Clive Allen/Paul Goddard pairing. Our two main strikers are both in the top 5 goal scorers in the division and we've had goals coming from all over the pitch, especially from our young creative attacking midfield corp. Our wingbacks are well integrated in the attacking scheme and Manning seems to be at the heart of most of our most attractive scoring attempts.
However, we are also conceding lots and have yet to keep a clean sheet. So obviously the two things are linked. We often play three/five at the back with the two wingbacks encouraged to roam freely. Plus the centerbacks are also encouraged to play football and we have seen Barbet, Hall, and even Leisner carrying the ball upfield and getting involved in passing/attacking game. As a result, there are times when our backfield is overrun, outmatched and torn apart easily. Also, the constant passing back to the goalie leaves the goalie (who is not an outfield player and therefore not naturally inclined to passing the ball around crisply) sometimes getting caught out and looking clumsy.
These defensive lapses are inevitable consequences of the system that we are playing. The manager could fix them by playing a flat back four, but then there wouldn't be the structural foundation for the attacking magic that we are all loving.
This is a team of players who, in many cases, haven't played this system that long and are still learning the upsides and downsides of the system.The fans are going to have to be patient and understanding. If we want to enjoy the freeflowing football and freescoring fun we are going to have to accept that it comes with conceding plenty of goals as well. There are only 11 QPR players on the field at a time. If we are going to be devoting 7-8 players to the attacking effort at any given time, there are also going to be lots of times when the defense is going to be out of shape and overwhelmed. They are part and parcel of the same thing.
Why isn’t anyone talking about the England team. 4-0 is a decent result no matter who the opposition is. 14 goals scored and only one conceded in 3 qualifying games so far. Exciting, young, talented team. two semifinals in the last two international competitions. This is priceless.
The BBC says that England haven’t lost a qualifying game in World Cup or European cup qualifiers in a decade. That doesn’t sound completely right coz I thought we lost to Belgium recently, but if the Beeb say it i guess it must be true. Ten bloody years! That’s crazy!!
We've got a bunch of players in the current squad who are just a joy to watch. You know who I mean: Eze, Manning, Chair, Amos, etc. Players with skill, guts, determination, you name it. We all like different things, so we likely all have different favorites. So who is your favorite and why?
My favorite player to watch is Bright. Whenever he is on the field I feel like we have a chance to blow up and whenever he is on the ball I feel like he is going to get something going. He is just exciting to watch as he runs at the defender, skips down the line, and so on. Plus, I love the strength he has combined with the baby face. I feel like people underestimate him and think he can be pushed around because he kinda looks young -- then they get a shock when he out-muscles them for the ball and sets off, leaving them in the dust.
What about you? Who do you particularly enjoy watching?
How great was that to have Pickford be the anchor man in our first five penalties and have him bury it with that much confidence? That is just demoralizing for the opposing team. Once he scored that, I just knew he was going to save one.
So, it now turns out that England are so nonchalant about penalties that we send our goalie up as anchor. Stud!
Marc Bircham, Lee Cook, and Martin Rowland are part of a celebrity football match being played at Loftus Rd on May 12 at 4pm (gates open at 2:30pm). Tickets are 12 for adults and 6 for kids. The match will support services for depression and mental health for young people. It’s a great cause but also what a treat to see Cook, Rowland and Bircham playing together after all these years.
Mark you calendars for what should be a great event.
First off, I can never think about Stan without smiling (except when I think of the alzheimers, obviously). The sht he pulled off was hysterical -- both good and bad (or should I say, good and better?)
I sat in the Ellerslie Rd stand at the time, near to the corner, and I remember him wandering over to take a corner and stopping to chat with a fan at the front of the terrace and check his paper (we all assumed he was looking up races for a bit of half time betting).
When I think of Stan and football, the word "gliding" always comes to mind. I always think of gliding into the middle from out wide, gliding past players like they were stuck in the mud. And then slotting the ball into the net under the outstretched arms of a hapless seeming goalie. He always made it look easy.
I think we can all agree that QPR have settled into a rut of mediocrity over the last twenty years; hopping from manager to manager and shiny thing to shiny thing without any real hope of long-term progress. And without stability we are never going to get long-term progress. Now is a moment in time where we really have a chance to build that stability. But we need a little discipline out of the Board and out of the fans. Its as simple as that. We have some young, committed, really good players throughout the squad who can form a stable core of the team for years to come. But it is key that the Board doesn't get distracted from the long-trm goals by th next shiny thing that floats by and switch out managers at the end of this season or even next season and give Steve a decent run.
Sheffield United are sitting just outside the automatic promotion spots and have a number of really good looking scalps already this season. So how good are they?
We know that their second string were not good enough to beat non-league Barney. In fact they didn’t really put up much of a fight and Barney well deserved their win. But that was the second string and they will likely be well up for Saturday. I haven’t paid much attention to them this season ( or any season, TBH) so I’d be interested to hear from someone who has been paying attention as to whether they are the real deal?
I'm a bit surprised that nobody has commented on how good Freeman was today. So I will.
I thought he had a great all round performance today. Firstly, there was the free kick, which was nothing short of deadly. Almost unstoppable. He made it look so easy and obvious. But we all know it isn't. We are QPR fans so we've seen those free kicks wasted over and over and over again. In fact, Forest had a free kick right near the end that was from almost the exact same spot as our one that led to the goal and it came to nothing (other than taking a few years off my life, of course).
But more than that one delivery, there was the number of times that he brought the ball out from defense. He seemed to be all over the park and, when it wasn't lobbed into the middle for Furlong or Leistner to head away, so many times it was Freeman snuffing out the danger. Obviously, Forest had a lot of possession and all of our midfielders played their part in holding a good team in check at home. But, Freeman is making a habit of this sort of performance. And long may it continue.
You know, he had his time as chief play maker and captain and he seemed to try to hard and overdo things. But his role this season seems to suit him much better -- maybe less pressure has resulted in better all-round performances. Well done lad!
Is Eze the new Taarabt? I find myself too often frustrated and only occassionally impressed with a flash of great play. The feeling reminds me of watching Taarabtm except that Taarabt was more extreme in both how frustrating he was and how utterly brilliant his flashes were. Of course, Eze is still a very young player, so he's still developing, but I can't help feeling that too often he is not being aggressive enough to live up to the potential.
We are currently the in-form side in the division with the best record over the last 5 games with 4 wins and a draw.
7th in the league. 1 point off the playoffs. Who would have thunk it just a few weeks ago?! Unbelievable.
Of all the elements of the resurgence that are surprising, Wzolek's role may be the most delighting. I always got the feeling that a lot of people were pulling for him to come good and he certainly seems to have played a big role in the improvement going forward -- may even be considered the missing element! Speed, energy, a good cross, able to take defensive responsibilties as well. What's not to love.
Obviously, the defensive improvement is fundamental, but the other side of it is critical too. Goals win games and we now have a sense that there are goals there for the taking.
I think is fair to say that Freeman has, as times, been a bit of a frustration for most QPR fans. A huge talent with feet so quick and nimble that it can be breathtaking at times. But, at the same time, too often he has seemed to over-thing things, over-play the ball, and generally have little result beyond a spot on the highlight reel. It seemed like, when Freeman was responsible for being the entire creative spark and the team's internal engine it was just too much responsibility and he couldn't handle it. However, maybe we are now seeing a shift in balance that better suits Freeman. Yesterday Freeman was at the heart of both goals but Eze also had a hand in both. Now that we have Eze, whose subtlety and creativity take a lot of pressure off Freeman, as well as plenty of other players who are willing to run hard, get into great positions and put in decent crosses, maybe now Freeman can be free of the (over) pressure to be everything to the team and can just play great football, nestled comfortably into a team of peers.
Maybe I'm overthinking it and it is just one result (well, three really), but I think Luke is just a much better player at the moment and I think that is because the increase in talent around him means he isn't over-doing it and is playing to his own strengths.
There is a dilemma for young talent playing in the English Premiership and aspiring to represent their country. Take Loftus-Cheek, for example. He looked good, if a little underripe in the time that he played in the World Cup. He looked like the sort of player who could develop and emerge as a real prospect for the Euros in two years time. However, to do that, he obviously needs week-in week-out playing time, which he is unlikely to get at Scum. Last year he played about 10 games, mainly in the FA and League Cup. As an attacking midfielder, he probably wont be dislodging Hazard, Barkley, Giroud, or Wilian any time soon to get a regular spot so he might have to move on to find regular playing time. However, playing for a smaller team risks the very real possibility of getting overlooked or ignored. English managers (even good ones like Southgate) don't look very far beyond the big 6 Prem clubs for talent. Only 2 of the 20 outfield players in the England World Cup squad were not from the big 6 (Vardy and Maguire both from recent Prem Champions Leicester). So, if he stays with Scum, Loftus-Cheek risks not getting the playing time to develop. But if he leaves for a club where he will get regular playing time, he risks getting overlooked or ignored.
Damned if you do, damned if you don't. Just one more reason that the Prem is the best and worst league in the world at the same time.
I'm bitterly disappointed. F.U.C.K. This was the year. There was the song; and all the people throwing their beer in the air every time we scored; and the song; and all the young, skillful-looking players, playing good football. Oh and, did I mention that this was the year we had a shot -- and that bloody song raising all my bloody hopes! Damn you Baddiel/Skinner!
Then again, it possible that in a few weeks I might look back and be pleased because, objectively, we did better than I actually expected. Its also possible that there are human beings mature enough to be able to think that now.
What about you? Did you expect us to screw up all along, so you are kinda relieved when we finally reverted to form? Or are you (like me) just reminded of why you hate football and never want to see another game ever again? EVER! (until Saturday, of course)