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|Storming second half sees QPR rescue Wigan win - Report
You've got to give the team credit, because it's not easy to play well in that kind of heat and even harder to come back from behind in it, so to score not one, not two, but three, was really impressive and it should have been more!
I actually thought it was a bit wild to switch formation when we had so few natural central midfielders on the pitch, but it worked out fine.
We've made enough chances in these past couple of matches to win two or three, which overall is a positive sign I think. I thought we might struggle to make chances this season, but we've made plenty in these games and now it's about improving our conversion rate.
At the other end, we're still making some pretty basic individual errors and the majority of the goals we've conceded have been soft, or gifts, and we need to make sure the opposition are having to work far harder to score goals.
I do think we're still a little vulnerable on the counter attack, especially because we play with such attack minded full-backs who bomb forward at every opportunity. This does leave the players left to deal with it with a lot to do at times. If the central midfielders are not mobile enough or don't have the legs to cover, it can cause problems, and even when they do cover, they can be dragged out of position to help cover gaps and this has caused us to be a bit stretched at times already this season, so I think there's work to do here.
The formation change at half-time worked on this occasion, but there are better teams out there who are capable of punishing us if we're not paying enough attention to the details, and we absolutely want to cut out individual errors that can lead to fast counters when we're pushing forwards.
Great win though, it felt important and was needed.
|Hall adds end product to QPR's new aesthetics — Report
We were comfortable for long periods of this match, but without ever really looking that threatening in front of goal, so it was pleasing to see us with added urgency towards the latter stages of the game. That bodes well for the future, but I would like to see that intensity arrive earlier and not just when we've gone behind or for the end.
The worry for me was the mistakes we made. We gave the ball away cheaply a couple of times in the first half and looked vulnerable when countered (and conceded a soft penalty for their goal). We can't afford to do that, because you don't want to be comfortable and then just throw it away with gifts from your own undoing â€“ Huddersfield didn't have to work hard for those chances.
But there was plenty to like and be positive about. Barbet's passing into feet was excellent and you could see he can execute the same type of passes that Joel Lynch often tried but didn't succeed with. It helped add something to the way we tried to build and I really liked Manning's desire to cross the ball in early.
And the likes of Scowen, Amos and Osayi-Samuel were nowhere near their best, so you have to hope they will have much better days and that in turn helps take the performance to the next level.
|More than just a new website — Column
Heh yeah... so for anybody else who is confused or didnâ€™t realise:
The menu is at the bottom:
Pressing it will bring up this:
That will allow you to browse around the site easily.
|More than just a new website — Column
Itâ€™s interesting that you use the Search to try and find this. Have you noticed the menu at the bottom of the site? You should see three little lines at the bottom, hit that and a menu will pop-up and then choose â€œFixturesâ€ and then choose â€œResultsâ€.
I think they could probably adjust this mobile menu on iPadâ€™s a little bit, and perhaps have the menu display on certain iPad resolutions like it does on the desktop site.
|More than just a new website — Column
Annaâ€™s story was on of my favourite aspects of the last season or so. She told me QPR were the best club sheâ€™d worked with out of all of the clubs on their books. I could tell there was a great level of mutual respect between the Aqueduct and club and we picked them because their mentality and style was quite similar to ours.
Overall this is a culmination of a lot of hard work by the club and the media team behind the scenes. We often donâ€™t get to see that level of professionalism and diligence first-hand at a business to business level, so they can take all the credit for this one.
|More than just a new website — Column
Thanks all. ðŸ˜Š
I can access the website fine from my iPad, so itâ€™s unusual that you canâ€™t. Are you able to try different networks when attempting to access the site?
Have you cleared your browser cache too? In some cases, when websites completely change service providers, it might be that data from the old one is cached locally on your machine and therefore conflicts and causes a problem.
In addition, if you use any particular plug-ins that may block content, such as adverts, etc, this can also cause issues and if you do, you might want to review those.
The site looks great and work a treat on my iPad. Iâ€™ve used it to browse, order things and watch the pre-season friendly streams without any problems.
But, yeah, otherwise itâ€™s interesting that you think the old one was better. It might be worth detailing exactly why you feel that way as Iâ€™m sure the feedback would be useful.
For me, Iâ€™ve found myself heading to the official site far more now than I was previously. I liked it from the outset, but its grown on me more and more as time has passed too, which is a positive sign.
|And two steps back — Report
MK Donsâ€™ style of play is much more what you would expect a Premier League team to be like. They build from the back and try to base their game around possession football.
Right now, they look like a side that lacks quality and depth to their squad, so they canâ€™t quite hit the heights they want to despite having a solid idea of how they want to play.
I donâ€™t think either team played well on the day. The whole match lacked the speed or tempo it needed to make it a spectacle.
Our performance proved in some ways that weâ€™re ill-equipped to deal with sides that play a more top-flight style. It should have been an opportunity to show whether we were able to press collectively to win the ball back, or perhaps focus on our own passing game and how we might approach sides that like to keep possession and sit deep.
They didnâ€™t really press the ball very much, so it was a chance for all of our defensive players to show what they could do with the ball. They werenâ€™t bombarded aerially and didnâ€™t have much threat to deal with in terms of pace, so I was hoping to see us dominating in that area of the pitch.
Instead, we sort of played the same way they did. It was almost like for like, and we needed to mix that with some directness and most certainly a bit more energy and speed. We tried, but not in the way you expected would work. Thereâ€™s little point launching long balls consistently up top when itâ€™s towards Conor Washington.
What I wanted to see, is for us to get Washington on the ball in all the areas he likes and areas that play to his strengths. If MK Dons did press higher up the pitch, that may have got him in behind or areas where he could latch onto the ball and drive forwards with his pace and ability to run with the ball.
Or, if they sat deeper, finding him the ball to feet in the pocket of space, so he could then turn and run at defenders in a bid to open the door and create space for others to run into, or have a crack if he could work an opening.
What we ended up with was a frustrated, isolated figure. Trying desperately to get some kind of foothold in the game, but never really achieving it. I think that frustration spoiled the very few times he did get the ball where he wanted, but he overran the situation and that might just be a tell-tale sign of adjusting to a higher level of football. Having said that, with it being MK Dons, and perhaps them being more closer to a League One side than your standard Championship side, I did expect him to perhaps play better than he did (while obviously understanding that itâ€™s bloody hard when the service you get is mainly long balls that lacked quality or gave him little chance to do anything with).
Right now though, we are not getting Washington into areas on the pitch where he can even have a shot at goal. Heâ€™s barely getting that, and anything he is getting heâ€™s often already crowded out. Thatâ€™s what I would have liked to have seen worked on for this game, and itâ€™s what Iâ€™d like to see worked on going forward too.
But weâ€™re a mid-table side, still with plenty of issues to solve, so weâ€™re doing just fine and weâ€™re going to continue to have teething issues and inconsistent performances from one week to the next, itâ€™s the nature of the beast. For this one, you kind of hoped that whatever the style we went with, man for man, our quality should have told. So that's why it feels like a step backwards, because it was a missed opportunity to progress some of the finer details.
|Bi-annual Fulham thrashing exposes familiar failings — report
I certainly agree with the sentiment that it's about identifying these issues with a view to trying to find solutions for them in the future. The current squad doesn't really have the attributes to play the way JFH wants the team to play and even with a couple of lengthy breaks that allowed for mini pre-seasons isn't really going to fix that at this point.
This was the first question mark of JFH's reign so far, because the formation and set up didn't seem to be right to me and he didn't make changes to help the side. But we're going to see these kind of games where half the team is on a different wavelength to the rest.
Here we had Mackie and Poulter trying to press on their own, occasionally with Phillips and Hoilett in advanced positions as well, but practically they were putting themselves out of the match once Fulham turned the ball over and got it into the middle of the pitch. At that point, they had so many two on one scenarios across the park that it made it very difficult for the players behind to really do anything about it.
So what happened? Most likely JFH wanted the whole team to press, but for some reason only some of them did. And then there was a lack of work ethic and desire to get into a compact shape when we didn't win that ball. So there's both a physical and tactical element to this. Once the physical doesn't work for some players, you have to make tactical adjustments to help and we never did that, so JFH has to take some responsibility but at the same time, you look at the players and think to yourself... come on, you should know better.
Still, Fulham showed that through structured play and particular personnel playing to their strengths can yield good performances and results. If we can find some pattern play for various areas of the pitch, then we can make improvements and find ways to play more consistently to our strengths.
|Ramsey feels the heat as QPR lose at Birmingham - report
There was a total overreaction to the performance.
It was simply two sides, both a little bit toothless or unwilling to go for it at the top end, and with three soft goals mixed in. We just didn't play with enough intensity or speed throughout the match, which is understandable when you consider we've shipped early goals in a lot of games.
I thought we controlled the play quite well at times, but then didn't have the guile or creativity in the final third to make anything count. I liked how well we played in JET on several occasions, it looked like we've worked on that on the training pitch, but from there, the likes of Phillips and Chery just didn't have an end product on the day.
Had we made some better decisions or had a bit more quality with our final ball, we might have created some opportunities. But if you're key creative players aren't firing it's going to leave you needing a player from somewhere to produce something â€“ a player like Austin â€“ who can make and score goals out of little service and half chances.
The lack of intensity is what was frustrating. We had a couple of patches in the second-half where we suddenly kicked into gear and looked really threatening â€“ but we were unable to sustain it, and it was by no means a horror show and the substitutions were all justified, no matter who childish the response was from the crowd.
Sandro and Fer have barely completed 90 minutes consistently for a very long time â€“ JET was taking plenty of flack before his brace the other week and now he's suddenly the main man. We've got four games in the space of 11 days, so we need to rotate and use the squad. Sure, we could have perhaps thrown caution to the wind a little bit towards the end, that much is fair to debate, but given how the crowd responded to everything throughout, to be honest, I'm surprised the team just didn't give up. They were being heckled, and in some cases heckled before certain players even touched the ball after coming on.
That aside. Perch isn't playing well. He's short of confidence and form and looks somewhat hesitant and unsure of himself. It's affecting things like his first-touch and decision making and unfortunately it's costing us. He gave away a poor free-kick that led to Birmingham's equaliser. Had he not made such a rash challenge, we'd have not given them the opportunity to get back into the game. That he's suspended for tomorrow is probably a fortunate coincidence in terms of timing â€“ he needs a little time out.
The second goal was down to Fer's stupidity and trying to be too fancy on the ball in a dangerous area on the pitch. I didn't think he played well here, and contrary to what others said about his performance against Bolton, I didn't think he played well there either. He has this tendency to be very rubbery legged and not in control of himself at times, and that's what I've seen in the past two games and which can lead to costly moments like this. I don't think he closes down intelligently at the moment and he simply didn't get involved in the game here, even if he does have obvious ability. There was a marked difference in purpose, involvement and aggression when Luongo came on. He got himself involved and on the ball in a way that Fer didn't.
Defensively we were okay in open play. The wide players are still not doing enough for the team in those areas though, so that's why we can be vulnerable when being countered. Once or twice, I saw three or four of our attacking players just walking back when we were being hit on the counter, and that's a problem (same under Hughes and Redknapp for your info). The team has to defend and attack together for it to work. We certainly dealt with long direct balls down the pipe a lot better here though. Hall was particularly involved and did better than at Bolton, which is a positive, and he also covered Onouha intelligently on occasions in a way that Onouha didn't do often enough for him.
Despite those observations and the score, I'll give the players the benefit of the doubt this time, because they were always going to have some bumpy patches throughout this transitional period, and they've got to try and tough it out. It's not been made any easier for them by a crowd that doesn't seem to want to support its own at the moment and is in a wholly self destructive mood, so if anybody isn't performing well enough, it's actually us, the supporters.
|Ramsey feels the heat as QPR lose at Birmingham - report
Iâ€™m so disappointed by what I experienced in the away end yesterday.
In all my years following the club, Iâ€™ve never really seen an away end as nasty, childish or as vindictive as that. Or people racially abusing their own players before.
This is not us, not who we are, or what weâ€™re about as a football club or a community.
I was so ashamed and embarrassed by it, and upset to the point that apart from Brentford away where I already have my ticket, I donâ€™t think Iâ€™m going to another one for a while. It breaks my heart to see this, and if it continues, itâ€™s pretty much the end of us as we know it.
Some supporters need to take a long hard look at themselves in the mirror, because that type of behaviour is unacceptable and does not represent me, or anybody else here. If the malaise seeps through to us, then weâ€™ve failed as fans.
|Green’s latest meltdown costs QPR dearly - report
What you saw in this match was another example of "cause and effect" and that's about it really. It's a new team, so it will need time to work out answers to specific problems, and they're not there yet, so it's one of those where they need to learn from.
Nottingham Forest are a well organised side, set up in a way that made it more difficult to find players like Tjaronn Chery and when those passing lines are suffocated, the players delivering the ball in will become more nervous as they try struggle to find their targets.
Similarly, as we have seen in the Cardiff City match, we're still a work in progress when the opposition press the midfield and defensive players. They will therefore hesitate even more, and get rid of the ball more quickly and into a percentage based fashion. That's why it looked like we abandoned our recent quick and slick passing style of play. It's cause and effect.
As much as I am a fan of Alejandro Faurlin I think matches like this one will see him eaten alive in his current physical state. He just wouldn't have the speed when put under constant pressure, but of course, it makes it harder for players when under that pressure to produce the goods, and players like Karl Henry aren't ever going to be in the team to make intricate deliveries so it magnifies the issue and compounds the problem when they're pressed collectively. But it's a double whammy â€“ sometimes you see players seemingly under no pressure make a bad pass, but that's because of sound defensive positioning from the opposition who are cleverly closing the passing lines out, or encouraging the player to play a certain pass that's high risk in terms of losing possession.
In the main it was just another typical Championship encounter. We did actually get the ball down and try to play at times, and there were some nice passages that came off the training ground, but we never really got going in the final third and the ball didn't stick very well either. So, when that happens, it always gives you a problem.
We changed it well in the second half and managed to find and get Chery on the ball far more, but despite both teams never really looking like scoring, once we took the lead we should have closed the game out. Sadly it was a big moment in the match when Rob Green got sent off and that changed the game completely. You can be disappointed with the ten-men scenario, perhaps we could have done a bit better, especially as you expect our strength is actually on the counter, but it was one of those things really.
As for Matt Mills and so on, sure, he's a Championship level defender, who's strength is in the air, but you would still expect Charlie Austin's physical and aerial strengths to have done a bit better in some circumstances too. Having said that, with any football match, it's 11 v 11 and each team and player is generally out there giving their all for their cause.
There's no divine right for any player or team to just walk all over their opponent, it just doesn't work that way in the professional game for the majority of the time.
This match was sort of what I expected. I mentioned a while back that in some of the home games, we're going to come up against well organised sides and need to find a way of breaking them down and staying in control. That's going to take time and there's going to be more matches where the other team are going to try and frustrate us for sure.
Our key players in a match like this didn't really produce in the top end of the pitch, apart from Massimo Luongo who was again excellent.
|Ramsey's satisfaction is not misplaced - column
Oh and one other thing I liked about the details.
We've played mixed teams across both matches, and against Newport, there were lots of changes, but when we defended corners, every player seemed to instantly know his responsibility and where he was supposed to be on the pitch.
I saw strikers like Polter racing back to pick up in the box, and players like Chery taking up his attacking position, as clearly instructed. These small details make a difference, because that kind of organisation can result in points won or lost.
That they'd done their home work on these things pleases me.
|Ramsey's satisfaction is not misplaced - column
It's certainly an observation worth keeping an eye on. He's been impressive, because he can really get up and down the pitch, is technical and tactical, but also tracks and covers really well too. He certainly put in plenty of challenges in these matches that shows he's not afraid of the dirty work or hard yards needed either.
He was fantastic against Dundee, but played a more reserved role against Newport, and was a bit deeper than the first match. But he played that role well, and when he went off, it was noticeable that his quality of passing was missing and therefore we weren't able to fire off as many attacks with the same precision. It was certainly a league above Alejandro Faurlin's, who has always been a capable passer of the ball, albeit in a different style.
Having said that, we've plenty of midfield players. Chery looks like an interesting player, with speed, aggression and the tenacity to get about the pitch, and I really enjoyed parts of Ben Gladwin's performance against Dundee as well. He faded and tired, but if he can maintain parts of his good play for sustained periods, he'll surprise a few too. He had decent feet for a tall lad, and was cute and clever on the ball on the counter attack on more than one occasion.
It's a team game in the end, if they have the work ethic and desire, they''ll give themselves half a chance. They'll still need time, but there potential is there.
I think we're a pair of full backs short for the campaign, but that aside, the rest is just about adding depth to the squad where we can. I would be surprised if we hang on to Charlie Austin and Matt Phillips in particular, but even if only two leave from those and say Leroy Fer and Steven Caulker, then we've actually done very well.
Phillips played with the confidence that he is a Premier League player in these matches, and sort of carried a bit of aura about him amongst the other players, which was interesting. But it was Jamie Mackie that also caught the eye, because of his work rate and runs into the channels. He chased everything against Dundee, turning balls down the line into something out of nothing â€“ which again is an important component for our set up this season.
If we're able to use our legs effectively it will unsettle the opposition, especially if we have the speed and collective ability to press high up the pitch. I think to some degree, if we're fully fit, that may become a weapon in our arsenal. I'm hopeful of that, because it ties in with some of the bits and pieces I've seen. If you pin so many players forward when you play out from the back, and are able to press aggressively if you don't win that first ball, then you're in with a chance every time.
|Ramsey's satisfaction is not misplaced - column
Yeah I agree. We might be slightly behind where we want to be in terms of match practice, however the Championship offers up lots of matches, so there will be no problem for the squad to get up to speed and they look like they've trained well regardless.
Chery was just one example of the players working hard for each other and with discipline. Of course, you never know if it's just a one off and circumstantial, but I'd like to think that wasn't the case because it looked more purposeful and informed.
We also had wide players on the opposite flank tucking in and thickening the midfield, depending on where the play was, so that's another encouraging sign.
As for Onouha, again, it's hard to say but the type of passes he played made me say "Yes" very loudly because he connected the dots in a way that he usually doesn't. If he can learn to pass the ball a bit better and more comfortably â€“ it'll take his game to the next level, and it doesn't have to be fancy passes, it just has to be the right pass.
I've been pretty pleased with how we've played out from the back, it's not been tippy tappy and they haven't dallied around or dithered about there either. They've got it under control, moved it well and started attacks properly or given it to players better than they who can do so.
And that's with a makeshift defence really as we've played lots of kids over these games, and while they've been a bit youthful at times with their approach, they've certainly given their all, so fair play to them. It doesn't make them ready for a full season of competitive Championship football, but it won't come as a shock to them if they're called upon and needed.
There's been a lot of talk about our fitness levels and so on, that we're undercooked and underprepared, but in these two matches, several players put in meaty tackles, ones that made me even stop and think "hang on a minute, careful, it's a friendly."
But that shows some bite and seriousness about the group â€“ that hopefully bodes well for us going forward. I certainly think the style of play, if we can maintain it and keep it fluid, will be much more what the fan base enjoys seeing from a QPR team.
There's just a little bit of Kenny Jackett about the set up, what with getting the ball into wide areas behind the opposition full backs and trying to get numbers in the box with the ball flashed across the face of the goal.
|A line in the sand — Signing
To say I'm pleased by what's happened in recent days is a bit of an understatement. The past couple of days have shown a great mark of intent and we've got off to a flying start. Let's hope we can maintain this positive momentum.
Just a few days back we'd lost 5-1 to Leicester City and I was disappointed by the amount of negativity shown for what effectively was a dead rubber match. Chris Ramsey called for patience and spoke about the need to be ready for a productive pre-season by the end of June.
When he said that, all I could think about was that it was just over a month away and it needed to be an exceptional period to be ready for a productive pre-season. At that point, we had a long list of players on the books whose future's were up in air, no idea of what kind of replacements we'd be in for or after, the FFP situation still ongoing and no real idea what season ticket prices might be.
It's clear Les Ferdinand and Ramsey have been hard at work preparing ahead of relegation, and rather than act late, as we've done many a time, we've come out of the blocks fast and been pro-active, which had already helped set a positive tone.
Of course, there's still lots of work to do, it still is likely to be a tough season, and we'll surely see more people come and go, including players we might want to see stay. But all in all, for what's needed to be done, absolutely no complaints at all.
In terms of the playing personnel, for me personally, it's almost like a shadow has been lifted off the place. For the first time in my life, I found it very difficult to get behind or support some of those players who were let go because they did not represent me or the club in the way I wanted or expected them to do so.
If we want the momentum to continue, it would be worth considering bringing Jamie Mackie home and Shaun Derry onto the coaching staff. That would really send a message out, that perhaps, finally, QPR might be coming back too.