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Hull horror show from Holloway's Rangers - Report
Sunday, 8th Apr 2018 18:55 by Lee McAlpine

From 4-1 victors to 4-0 losers in the space of five days, QPR's away day woes continued in earnest at Hull City on Saturday and Lee McAlpine was unfortunate enough to be there for LFW.

If this match report has a bit of an end-of -season feel about it, that's because it probably is for me. A long weekend in Nuremberg means, rather fortunately, I will avoid the inevitable mouth-watering prices for the Leeds game; which as usual will be as pointless a fixture as it has been in recent years. Wouldn't it be great for a Leeds game to actually have a semblance of importance attached to it? Imagine how nasty the locals would be if that was to occur.

Talking of pretty meaningless fixtures, today's match in Hull looked like being pretty close to one of those, with the home team now almost certainly safe and us actually eyeing up twelfth place, such has been the run of good form we've been on. Yeah right, honestly.

The KCOM Stadium, or any of its previous guises, have not been much fun for QPR fans in recent years. The games have tended to be dour affairs, only livened up by either: Barton testicle punches, Adel sulks or bombing taunts from Hull's knuckle dragging minority. Professor Nigel Adkins is Hull's manage these days leaving me to look forward to whatever over-complicated, nonsensical bollox he would come up with after the game. QPR fans may well grumble about our leadership, well on Twitter anyway, but I would much rather go for a Holloway/Fernandes combo than an Adkins/Allam hierarchy. Yeah right, honestly.

The mis-treatment and complete alienation of the Hull fans has been unbelievable, you will struggle to find anyone amongst these home fans with anything positive to say. Asset-stripping of the team and complete disregard for the fans seems to be the way forward for the Allams out of spite for not being handed the council owned stadium for nothing or being allowed to change the name of the club, so it can be said The Tigers have done reasonably well to avoid holding hands with Sunderland on their way down to the third tier. A well-timed, decent run of results have pulled Hull tidily clear from third-bottom Barnsley, so only their angst against their owners should have given the home fans any negativity, rather than any realistic fear of relegation. A sound pasting by our revitalised outfit would have added to their unhappiness and it would have made a welcome change to previous visits. Yeah right, honestly.

We’ve never won here - it's a pretty dull stadium with a very sleepy atmosphere and the football usually matches that. But with our resurgent form and a pretty confident, young squad, playing without fear, I was more than hopeful of a better than average performance today. The fact that Ian Holloway and his staff must now be feeling relatively secure about their employment prospects for next season, was another reason why I thought we could put on a display this afternoon and give the locals even more to moan about than their shabby owners. Yeah r... Seriously, these were my pre-game thoughts. At no point on my QPR radar was the kind of pathetic, shambolic and unprofessional display that was served up by those in blue and white hoops today.

Firstly, Hull must also be commended for the pre-match applause for Ray Wilkins. It really was generously given and warmly participated in, especially considering if you watched or listened to any main stream media this week, you wouldn't have even known Ray ever played for QPR. Particularly nauseating was the Jim White interview with John Terry on Talkshite (I know, I should know better) White was so far up Terry's backside he could've checked our former Chelsea friend's prostrate out with his tongue.

Pre-match rumours of a sickness bug, along with Holloway's hints of game time for the likes of Chair and Osayi-Samuel, suggested huge changes from Monday's impressive victory over Norwich. As it turned out this wasn't really the case. Rangers lined up with the usual back four plus 16 midfielders. The regular trio of Scowen, Luongo and Freeman in the middle, Wsolek on the left, Manning on the right with Eze up front putting the ‘false’ into ‘false nine’. Sylla was on the bench with no sign of Smith or Washington.

The first half was an ordinary, backwards and forwards boring encounter with only Hull doing anything of note in their opponents’ penalty area. Great challenges from Onuoha and Lynch prevented goal bound efforts before Lynch limped off after landing awkwardly. Abel Hernandez contrived to mis-kick from six yards and Scowen almost scored a comical own goal. While all of our good approach play fell apart the moment we got anywhere near their box. We simply had no pace or thrust where it mattered and the ball was given away countless times by both teams, it really was all very sub-standard stuff.

Bidwell and Bowen were booked for pointless handbags and the home fans tried to get Onuoha sent off for a fair but hard aerial challenge, not that he needed much help later on. The game was drifting to a predictable 0-0 half time score until we contrived to give the ball away in midfield twice and Hull scored twice.

The first had a hint of offside about it, not that the assistant would've spotted any offside as he proved to be the most incompetent official throughout the game. A misplaced pass in the middle by Scowen handed possession cheaply back to Hull. Wilson was feed clean through and he finished neatly past Smithies. Luongo could've equalised but after being found by Furlong, blazed wildly over. The second goal for Hull soon followed, deep into added time. This was an even worse goal to concede and at such a vital time, killing off the game, the completely awful and ineffective Wsolek, miss controlled a simple ball and Hull broke clear. Abel Hernandez twisted and turned and crashed a fierce effort against the woodwork. A fortunate escape for Rangers, until the ball rebounded against Smithies and dribbled into the net.

QPR got exactly what they deserved in the first half- absolutely zilch. We didn't take care of the ball, we were careless and completely one dimensional, in that we were so slow in the final third. Eze may be the next best thing to sliced bread and destined for higher places but he is not, never will be, a lone striker. He has a lovely languid, easy way about him. He controls the ball effortlessly and seems to have so much time on the ball. That's great but utterly worthless when he is isolated with no runners beyond him. Wszolek and Manning, both playing on their wrong sides, did nothing in the first half, Wszolek did even less in the second half. Manning didn't because he was replaced at half time by Sylla, but there was a long list of potential tugs, such was the ineffectiveness of their first half efforts.

If the first half was disappointing, well the second? You've all seen the score and the red card, it was downright embarrassing. Hull scored two more ultra simple goals. The third was routine, but well made, while the fourth was a result of more poor control (this time from Luongo) and very ordinary defending.

Eze took a cringeworthy dive trying to win a penalty and luckily avoided a booking, but he did have our only effort on goal, when he controlled the ball well on the edge of the box. But this effort was well blocked by the moany Dawson. We had countless corners but never, ever looked like scoring. And to be honest I was relieved to keep the score to just four.

The final indignity came in added time when our contract-stalling captain completely lost the plot. Scowen committed a foul near the halfway line and a Hull player retaliated, giving Scowen a gentle shove. Onuoha then charged across the field and rammed into the Hull playing sending him flying. As straight forward case of violent contact as you will ever see and the red card was rightly shown. We were 4-0 down in added for crying out loud. Did Onuoha think he was Joel Lynch on Christmas Eve? Three match ban.

What a shame, if that is our final memory of a player who has worn our colours with distinction over a number of years. The ten men managed to keep the score to four as the final few minutes slipped away.

Rangers had been soundly thrashed, not really by Hull though, but by poor team selection and set-up, rank bad defending and an unusually large number of poor performances. I dread to think what a top performing Championship side would've done to us today. We were simply not at it. It was a very similar performance to Forest away- disgusting and clearly not like we have been seeing recently.

Despite today, I've enjoyed watching Rangers this year. I think we've easily surpassed most people's sensible expectations. At times we played some expansive, entertaining football and have been a match for virtually all of the division, bar Nottingham Forest obviously. And with a better chance-conversion ratio, we would surely have been pushing for a play-off spot. But all in all you'd have to be a pretty miserable (me sometimes I know) not to be happy with how the team has developed this year, especially considering the young makeup of the match day squad. I've also really enjoyed the quiet transfer windows and the gradual disappearance of overpaid wage-thieves. There really is an awful lot more to like about our club these days and I for one will be looking forward to next season far more than I was this time last year. But the away form has not been good enough, this is the second time we’ve been beaten 4-0 and extends the run of only one clean sheet on the road all season.

As it's my final effort of the season, I'd like to finish by thanking everyone for the kind comments (both online and in person) which I've received about my match day ramblings. Norf's writing boots are huge ones to even attempt to fill and I'm just happy for my words to appear on the same site as his.

You Rsssss

Links >>> Ratings and Reports >>> Message Board Match Thread

QPR: Smithies 5; Furlong 5, Lynch 6 (Robinson 15, 5), Onuoha 5, Bidwell 5; Scowen 5, Freeman 6, Luongo 5; Wsolek 3 (Osayi-Samuel 67, 5), Manning 4 (Sylla 45, 5); Eze 5.

Subs not used: Ingram, Cousins, Baptiste, Smyth

Red Card: Onuoha 90+1 (violent conduct)

Bookings: Bidwell 30 (unsporting), Scowen 90+1 (foul)

Hull: McGregor, Aina, Dawson, Hector, Clark, Henriksen, Larrson, Bowen (Grosicki 52), Toral (Irvine 59), Wilson, Hernandez (Campbell 71)

Subs not used: Meyler, Marshall, Tomori, McDonald

Goals: Wilson 42 (assisted Hernandez), Smithies own goal 45 (assisted Hernandez), Grosicki 62 (assisted Wilson), Hernandez 69 (assisted Henriksen)

Bookings: Bowen 30 (unsporting), Irvine 81 (foul), Henriksen 90+1 (unsporting)

QPR Star Man — Joel Lynch 6 One good challenge and clever back header to Smithies. And it was nil nil when he went off. Honourable mention to Freeman who never stops trying even when it's clearly not going be his day.

Referee G.Eltringham 8 No complaints at all. Another solid display from a reliable official. Didn't let home fans and players intimidate him, getting all major calls right. Although a special mention to assistant nearest us, who gave a foul to Hull when Sylla was pushed in the back- a truly remarkable decision.

Attendance — 14,181 (700 QPR approx) All the travelling QPR fans got a free shirt which was a nice touch. Good luck to the Hull fans and their ongoing attempts to oust the Allams.

The Twitter @LeeMcAlpine1

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Phil_i_P_Daddy added 20:07 - Apr 8
I found Olly’s post-match comments alarming.
He’s taking ANOTHER look at himself over team selection; he’s admitted he can’t emote to the squad and he believes Scowen needs a blolocking for Onuaha getting sent off! From the TV highlights Scowen knew he’d done wrong and even took a shove from a Hull player without retort. Then Onuaha storms into the picture and takes out the Hull player for no reason whatsoever!

We WILL lose key players in the summer; I doubt we can afford to bring in many, if any, adequate replacements and any upcoming youngsters that stay will continue to have their heads turned. I wish I shared others’ optimism for next season.

Anybody got a spare pair of rose-coloured glasses? Mine are broken!

OldPedro added 20:14 - Apr 8
A fair report although I wouldn't have marked the ref so highly. I thought he did let the home fans and players intimidate him into several soft free kicks including a free kick for the hard but fair aerial challenge by Ned you mentioned in your report. He also could have booked a couple more Hull players for multiple niggly fouls.

However, the ref didn't make a difference to the result - too many of our players just played poorly

nix added 20:22 - Apr 8
Thanks Lee for producing a balanced report. Sorry you had to suffer it. Sounds a horror show but we’ve had those before and bounced back.

We definitely need to bring some consistency in for next season and as you say particularly improve our away form.

smegma added 21:04 - Apr 8
I believe Luongo gave the ball away for the first goal and literally strolled back in a futile attempt at defending. So he had 2 goal assists, not the one. No shots on target tells a story. And no supply line to a lone striker who hasn't played that role all season tells another story. But then, that's what you get when team selection is decided by the weekly turn of the tom bola. What next, JET to start on Tuesday ??

HamptonR added 21:50 - Apr 8
Sorry but for me the Onuoha incident is not that bad.
The Hull player shoves Scowen with two hands then puts the shoulder in, two offences?
Onuoha puts the shoulder in, does not send the Hull player flying, and maybe at four nothing down he shouldn't have bothered but the Hull player twice had a go at one of his own and as skipper Onuoha decided to step in.
I didn't see it as a straight red and too many times this season we have seen players lunge and push opponents with two hands and and get away with a talking to. For me yellows all round.

Myke added 23:55 - Apr 8
Thanks Lee for this and previous reports - enjoy the summer break

isawqpratwcity added 01:12 - Apr 9
Thanks, Lee. Clive should pay you extra when the games are as bad as this.

Thanks for the clear direction on the Onuoha imbroglio (sounds like a decent spy thriller). Despite being obviously much less serious than Ned's offence, I wasn't able to see why Henriksen wasn't red-carded as well. Calling it 'unsporting conduct' drops it to a yellow, but I still think it technically meets 'violent conduct' despite the much more deserving behaviour of Ned. Clark yapping like a pathetic terrier, all bark and no bite, is just another illustration of the awfulness of modern football: if a bloke has gone red mist, you give him some curry and see if you can make it worse.

timcocking added 04:52 - Apr 9
With the Hull situation so bad, i have to wonder why they haven't completely boycotted all matches until something is done?


timcocking added 04:53 - Apr 9
Onuoha's wasn't a red. People who are saying so obviously haven't played much competitive football.

timcocking added 05:15 - Apr 9
Or at least never would/should have been a red in any game i've ever played. No violent conduct. I wouldn't even expect a yellow for that in real football matches. In this day and age, i suppose you have to expect it might be given. And Scowen did booger all wrong.

dublinr added 08:52 - Apr 9
Thanks for the report, Lee. Properly gloomy, but with a good dollop of resignation. You were the right man for a tough job.

MancR added 08:56 - Apr 9
The red card is a weird one. Having now seen the replay is doesn't look that bad. But seeing it live was completely different. From sideways on you could seeing Onuoha charging across the field and it certainly appeared "violent". No one around me was surprised or angry when he was sent off.
None of the other pausing and shoving yellow cards were as bad from my viewpoint.

Northernr added 10:39 - Apr 9
I thought it was a red at the time and still do.

DesertBoot added 11:10 - Apr 9
Thanks Lee for your very honest and detailed reports - it just wouldn't be QPR if we put in such limp performances when we least expect them.
Clear red card for Onuoha the bad tasting icing on a bad tasting cake - let's hope things are sweeter tomorrow night.

Toast_R added 14:30 - Apr 9
A blatant Red card for Onuoha. I can understand what has prompted him to do it, the Hull players was being a complete knob and trying to stir a reaction from Scowen and Ned took exception to it but stupidly went the wrong way about dealing with it. Stupid.

LoftusRob77 added 19:18 - Apr 9
Another inexplicable performance that I've had this misfortune of suffering the indignity of.

This game just typifies Holloway's lack of managerial ability. I'm no 'hater' but I am generally staggered by his tactics, team selections and decision making.

Too may excuses... Making mistakes is fine and owning up to them is very honourable but making the same mistake time and time again just isn't, period!

Hopefully the new PR person can do a better job of managing the post match interviews next season. In the interim period I'm available to gag Holloway with my free shirt!

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