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End of Term 23/24 – Attack
at 22:26:54

Clive, absolutely fabulous write up as always. As I have repeatedly said, your write ups and insights into the team we all support are thoroughly absorbing and for those who cannot make so many games keeps us close to the club. Thanks to you and your team for the Previews, Reports and End of Term reports. Totally indebted to you.
I cannot quite fathom what will happen next season after the remarkable change from that Watford opener to the Leeds home game. Can we hang on to Marti, let alone the likes of Illy, Anderson, Dunne? Has Cook got another season? Has Willock got over his injuries. And when it comes to persistent injuries, how do we know when Taylor-Richards has finally gone - when he was never present in the first place?
All said, a very exciting prospect for next season. Play-offs perhaps - or do I need the summer off too?
The season that was - Preview
at 20:52:28

Surely Dykes to score (23 away games and waiting) in a 1-1 draw.

Great read as always, especially the delightful reference Taylor-Richards.
Watch me rise up and leave, all the ashes you made out of me – Report
at 15:47:43

Clive, I think it was prophetic in your preview with references to all the great performances against least in the past. From my experience, I seem to remember more memorable games v Leeds than any other team. And this was yet another.

From the off, the team were alert and hungry. Once with the ball, in the back or going forward, few wasted passes. And even when the tempo dropped off a bit (as to be expected), they defended well. Up front, more set pieces again.

An outstanding performance, always the more satisfying when playing a very decent opposition. My personal high spot was the Andersen goal .... a real throwback to the Bowles making space, accelerating into space and shooting left footed into the corner. If no one has offered, I'll pay for his shower plughole to be kept clean!

Thanks for keeping going through such grim times, how lovely to post a report so positive.
Managers matter(?) – Preview
at 21:31:44

Clive, the only reason I want a cup run any season is so I get more than the '48 previewd and match reports '. Another great read. Thanks as always. Can we hang on to Marti, is the burning question?
New boys inspire QPR’s first win at Blackburn for 25 years – Report
at 14:52:21

Unbeaten since Clive has gone on holiday, should we crowd fund his continued vacation?!!!

With Huddersfield winning, can those those teams above can be pulled into this? Maybe starting with Blackburn?

Thanks for the report.
Anatomy of a fall – Report
at 11:42:55

Begovic was not fouled but chose to go round a static forward, who simply stood his ground. Should have stayed goal side. Not picking on him, as I think he has been excellent of late, but it was a goalkeeping error in my books.
The QPR is strong in this one – Report
at 12:03:02

Great and accurate report on the night. Clearly disappointing that there was an opportunity missed here. I think the Smyth substitution should have been earlier and he certainly seemed to unlock things, after Chair and Willock had been well policed by Plymouth.

But what we do know is that Taylor Richards has feigned injuries for so long to support the club, as his presence lacked vision, awareness of what was around him and fitness. Looked to me like the 'keep me up' genius you bring on for half time entertainment. At least Cifuentes has found this out without us losing.

We are still a weak team with a better manager, at least we didn't lose and the real test will be in the next few games as to whether we are going make a fist of it for the rest of the season.

Disappointed but more hopeful than a few weeks back.
Are you having fun yet? - Preview
at 14:11:25

I think Barton was the worst QPR signing ever. Of all people, signed by Warnock and later contributed to Warnock's sacking.

There are plenty of close runners in the 'topping up their pension' category but Barton was all round vile. IF only he was even as good as he thought he was.

I hope for a draw today and a win Wednesday. A bit of optimism for a change!
Light at the end of a two-year tunnel - Report
at 10:40:26

Great report and a superb second half. The improvement in all departments is really something to embrace. Begovic commanding the penalty area, the back line, the midfield movement and up front. Chair having options but being less predictable is another example. This is a good coaching team at work, notably as none of them are 'their' players.

We can't expect everything too soon and other teams will win above (except Wayne Rooney's Birmingham) but there is some cause for optimism here. Especially using subs so freely, as this will bring on players.

Early days, of course!

A Ben Pearson own goal – Report
at 12:21:44

A very memorable night for so many things!
With all the highs and lows, timing of the equaliser, a goal from the 10-men, Chair's strike against the post, a corner that didn't even get to the first defender. Bleak.

And yet, Dykes redeeming himself and Larkeche's incredible persistence and fight that deserved a goal. And even Willock with a trademark finish.

We all know that this is a long old season, with the obvious spectre of relegation but there is certainly improvement in style of play and understanding on the pitch. Cifuentes substitutions paid off. Interesting listening to him in the post match interview.

Stay up, I don't know but a team with a manager and some interesting players in development does actually bode well. But of course, Huddersfield win away!

Thanks Clive, great seeing you and great report as always.
Right man. Right time? – Column
at 20:14:54

Many thanks for an illuminating piece.

I have to say, I would have had Warnock back here given his history with the club (the second occasion being more pertinent to our current plight) and his recent work as an escapologist with Rotherham and Huddersfield. For me, it would have allowed the club to focus removing the toxicity and bringing together the whole back room staff, whilst Warnock deals with the day to day.

However, it looks an interesting appointment with Cifuentes. Presumably he is an intern, given our financials. He looks like a manager suiting our existing players but will he be able to get into the club where it is failing and somehow overcome the internal politics that has plagued so many recent managers. I would be surprised if he can turn all this around, along with the 6 points deficit for starters. So assuming the worst, will he be there for the following season or take the first decent offer (or doing a Beal, as it might be otherwise known).

Sorry to say, whatever Cifuentes delivers it will be better than GA, which is a real shame, as he was a great player for the club.
The window that was, and wasn’t – Preview
at 12:12:23

Most definitely not boring. Thanks for another excellent preview in difficult times. Always a great read.

Oakskull defines boring with his repeated assassination of Lumley back a while - 6 posts about him being shitty-everything. Don't want to know where your head is
South of the river – Awaydays
at 12:05:51

This is going to be a long season. Already coping better thanks to this superb narrative. Great prologue too. Hard to believe just how much has changed so quickly from this time last year! Very different starting point, best of luck to GA (unless he pisses off after 10 weeks)
Whicker’s World; Dieng departs; Love Island smoking area — Austria Part One
at 15:55:11

Thanks for another outstanding report and insight into the state of our club. Another fantastic read, even if grim. I guess the only thing left to see is are we going to go down fighting (and not the meaning as with the Chinese national team), which is the only thing that GA can possibly instil into this team. This has to be the bleakest pre-season I can recall.

Ferdinand departs, where to now driver? Column
at 15:22:09

Another highly insightful piece, thanks.
Do Brighton have some template that we could use? It is obvious we need to start all over, analysing every aspect of the club top to bottom and what is the plan. And in doing this, it probably means staying in the Championship is not likely next season.
Ainsworth did a great job with Wycombe but I cannot see this style working successfully for us, short of avoiding relegation and nothing else. It is not building for the future.
Last season was wholly depressing, this season does not bode well.
Thanks again Clive for all your work here, it is the only thing associated with our club that is of any quality!
QPR cling to positives and single point as situation darkens — Report
at 20:55:41

Not at the game but so thankful to your reports.

Right now, it is the only QPR related thing I look forward too. The Burnley match is set for them to win the title in front of their supporters, whilst Reading will surely get their point.

Just can't see us surviving this season.

Royals fall victim to Roberts' redemption story - Report
at 17:32:50

When I was in primary school in the 60s, I once told a fib.

I take full responsibility for the Jeff Hendrick double strike.
Convenience, coincidence and cost made Critchley the obvious choice - Column
at 14:56:00

On this occasion, when the music stopped, it seems we got lucky, given the choices made in the past at this point.

I guess the good news is that he has played the jump ship card and probably needs some stability himself before looking at better opportunities. This will be good as long as he delivers and of course that is the unknown.
Savage amusement - Report
at 12:02:18

I think the Shithousery that we are accustomed to reached its peak with a moment in the second half when one of our players gave a robust (possibly foul) challenge to their full back, who was left lying off the pitch by the Ellerslie Road stand. First response was to lift himself onto the pitch, which to be fair Ward was not having, clearly showing that if he was off, he could get treatment off the pitch. As soon as Ward turned his back, said injured player literally skipped to his feet. Almost amusing. Whilst all teams do shithousing, it is one of the most frustrating aspects of the game and not something that makes any game enjoyable. I think book early and often has to be the approach, consistently too. Yes, a bit of an ask.

As for the game, I feel we have regressed massively from the quick passing and player understanding that was in some of the earlier games. Tuesday was one of the old fashioned get down the line and cross into the danger area ... which works well if the cross is good and the recipient can do something with it. Both lacking.

It is obvious teams will sit back in numbers and there needs to be another way of unlocking.

Also agree that Chair tried too hard, which becomes predictable for defenders. Not blaming him for this but what has happened to the patient and fast switching from side to side?

One final point on Chair was a lung busting track back on one of their breaks, which was not needed in the end but a credit to him for seeing the danger.

All round very disappointing, as this seemed more than a bad day at the office.

Great report, thanks
Into the Lions’ Den — Preview
at 14:16:44

Well put Clive on the football cancellation (though Scottish amateur football for some reason was excluded from this??!!!) .
However, the answer was in your own question "You’re just not running your organisation or competition professionally if that genuinely wasn't the case." Indeed it is, it is not professionally run from top to bottom, whether cancelling games all the way to ignoring teams breaching rules etc.. Just another one to add to the list!
Good point on expectation, be amazing if we got a win.
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