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Penrice storms the gates but Francis exit looms - History
Friday, 26th Oct 2018 09:33 by Clive Whittingham

With Aston Villa in town tonight, LFW looks back to a memorable QPR win in this fixture from 1994 which came in the midst of Gerry Francis' controversial exit from the club.

Memorable Match

Queens Park Rangers 2 Aston Villa 0, Saturday October 29, 1994, Premier League

Playing Villa at home so soon after Ipswich away allows us to continue the ‘Thompson out’ story we were running through prior to the trip to Portman Road.

QPR’s embattled chairman had survived to the end of that protest-ridden 1993/94 season, and the emergence of the prodigiously talented Kevin Gallen from the youth team had bred new hope going into 1994/95. Rangers opened with a 3-2 home win against Sheff Wed, in which Gallen scored his first senior goal for the club to win the game – a match we covered here during the week.

But the influential Ray Wilkins had been lost to Crystal Palace over the summer and an injury to star striker Les Ferdinand left Gallen to play up front with his inexperienced youth team mate Danny Dichio. Rangers hadn’t won in nine league games, that Sheff Wed win still their only maximum of the season, as they prepared to welcome Aston Villa to Loftus Road in late October 1994 with rumours swirling around the place about the future of manager Gerry Francis. They’d been knocked out of the cup 4-3 by Man City during the week, despite Gallen giving them the lead directly from the kick off inside the first ten seconds of the match.

This was to be a memorable, tumultuous weekend, with Liverpool in town for a Sky Monday night match 48-hours later on Halloween. Rangers, miraculously, won both games. Experienced former England international Steve Hodge had been brought in by Francis on a free from Leeds prior to the meeting with one of his former clubs on the Saturday. Rangers took a first half lead with Paul McGrath inexplicably let a ball bounce in behind him in the penalty box having lost his bearings entirely – Dichio nipped in, rounded Mark Bosnich and scored his first goal for the first team from a narrow angle.

Villa, with a potent strike force of Dean Saunders and Dwight Yorke to call on and supersub Graham Fenton emerging from the bench in the second half, laid siege to the Rangers’ goal in the second half and it felt like only a matter of time before an equaliser went in. For once though, the Gods were on QPR’s side and when Francis attempted to run the clock down by sending on Gary Penrice from the bench to replace Dichio in the last minute he inadvertently set up a memorable second goal.

David Bardsley put boot to ball to clear his lines during another penalty box scramble and turfed it away down the field. Bosnich had by now taken up residence on the halfway line, ready to retrieve such clearances and return them immediately to the School End penalty box. But the introduction of Penrice’s fresh legs added a different dimension to the situation and this time the keeper had a QPR man to contend with. The pair went in for a block tackle underneath the television gantry on the Ellerslie Road side of the ground and the ball spurted out in QPR’s favour, past Bosnich and into the completely empty half of the field at the Loft End. Now it was a straight race between Penrice, who wasn’t quick, and Bosnich, who wasn’t slim. A farcical, agonising chase to the open goal ensued, with Penrice determined not to waste the chance by shooting too soon from too far out, and Bosnich frantically trying to get back to correct his error. When Penrice finally got to a ball he looked, momentarily, like he’d booted too far ahead of him, on the edge of the six yard box and slammed it into the empty net the ground erupted like rarely before in the modern era.

Two days later, QPR produced one of their best performances of that time in beating Liverpool 2-1. Les Ferdinand returned from injury with a masterful display of centre forward play and Gallen really announced his arrival on the Premier League scene with a superb performance. Trevor Sinclair’s bullet diving header off David Bardsley’s cross gave them the lead in the first half and although John Barnes scored a typically classy equaliser for the visitors, Rangers won it late on when Liverpool played their offside trap once too often and Ferdinand stole in behind Neil Ruddock to force home a winner.

But attention was mostly drawn to the sight of Rodney Marsh at the front of the director’s box ahead of his reported appointment as director of football. Francis and Marsh didn’t get on, and Francis resigned later that week. Marsh, who has since told the QPR Podcast he’d insisted Francis was involved and on board with the appointment before it was made only to discover that Thompson had done nothing of the sort, didn’t take up the position after all.

In an interview with Ron Norris for LFW, Richard Thompson said recently: “I'll be honest, it's years later so if you want the truth I can probably tell it now. I was in a position where I had just had enough of the situation with Gerry. I said to Gerry 'can you help me out here, can you maybe write some programme notes or be a little more supportive of me?' and he bluntly said 'no I can't, I can't help you, you're on your own'. I appealed to him, I mean we had been working together for nearly four years, maybe you could just write some things to say I'm not all that bad and he said 'no, absolutely not'. So of course I got resentful and that led to me ringing up Rodney.
“I was thinking Rodney was so popular at QPR that if I brought him in as a director of football role that might be good, the fans might like that. I sat down with Rodney and he said 'you do understand of course that Gerry can't stand me?'. I honestly didn’t realise it was that bad, I knew they weren't close but Rodney then tells me Gerry absolutely hates him.
“Then Rodney says 'is this because you want Gerry out?'. I said if that was the outcome I wouldn't mind that really, I've just had enough right now. So Rodney says 'don't tell him then, let the whole thing build up and Gerry will either storm out or accept it'. So I didn't tell Gerry and I figured that if he accepts it with Rodney on the board it’s a good move for the club but if he leaves, he leaves and it it’s probably better for me.
“The day after it came out Gerry came to me and made it crystal clear how he felt about Rodney Marsh, it’s fair to say he wasn't happy at all.
“It was a hell of a few days. I honestly didn't know things were that bad between them. I didn't understand how much Gerry didn't like him but at the same time I didn't mind much because I thought Gerry wasn't helping me maybe Rodney can. But yeah basically Gerry was right I never asked him his view.
“Ironically at that time Alan Sugar then called about the Spurs job and Gerry wanted to go there. When Gerry left all the people around me and all the non exec directors like Tony Ingham said they didn't want Rodney at the club, so he then didn't come on board. Everyone got really upset with him and it just wouldn't have worked. I wanted a legend from the past there, I needed help, I needed help with the PR and communication with the fans and I really thought Rodney would be the best man for it.”

Gerry Francis told the Fulham Chronicle recently: “Liverpool was my last game at home. Rodney Marsh, who the board knew I didn’t get on with, was parading around, and I felt I had to resign. I was fuming. We’d already had had the chairman’s car turned over just before because the club wanted to sell Les, and I didn’t. After finishing fifth previously and selling players for the last two years like Andy Sinton, Paul Parker and Darren Peacock, wanting to sell Les was frankly, a kick in the teeth. They wanted me to resign so they could sell Les whenever they wanted to, because earlier they promised me they wouldn’t. It was emotional. I was having to leave a club I didn’t want to after 20 years of effort - and disappointed was an understatement. I didn’t want to go to Tottenham particularly. I didn’t want to go into management after that. Two weeks before I got a call from Wolves, but wanted to stay in the Premiership at a club I love, but the board forced my hand.”

Rodney Marsh, for his part, told Ron at QPRNet: “A lot of people were anti Richard Thompson at the time but I always found him to be an extremely astute businessman and a very clever man too. I certainly didn’t see the demise of QPR, all I saw was potential success. QPR’s collapse coincided with Richard Thompson leaving the club and Chris Wright taking over. I did take a battering yes but I’ve always looked at life as being relative and what I do, what I’ve always done and what I continue to do on television that gets me into trouble is I tell the truth. I told the truth at the time, I told it in the book and I’ll tell it to you again now: the first thing I said to Richard Thompson was before we do anything I want to meet with Gerry Francis. That was the first thing I said, so how in the world that ever got misplaced I don’t know.”

QPR: Dykstra; Bardsley, McDonald, Yates, Wilson; Sinclair, Holloway (Maddix 72), Hodge, Barker; Gallen, Dichio (Penrice 89)

Goals: Dichio 36, Penrice 90

Villa: Bosnich; Barrett, Ehiogu, McGrath, Staunton; Townsend, Lamptey, Parker, Richardson (Fenton 76); Yorke, Saunders

Highlights >>> Villa 1 QPR 3, 1989 >>> QPR 1 Villa 0, 1973 >>> Villa 2 QPR 1, 1969

Recent Meetings

Aston Villa 1 Queens Park Rangers 3, Tuesday March 13, 2018, Championship

QPR turned in their best performance of the season away to Aston Villa in March. The game had been rearranged from the week before because of heavy snow, and in the meantime Villa had thumped eventual champions Wolves at Villa Park to cement their own promotion credentials. But QPR, despite just two away wins all season, ripped up the form book and gave an indication of the heartbreak that lay ahead for the hosts in the play-offs. With John Terry floundering in the face of Matt Smith’s best display in QPR colours, the R’s surged into a 2-0 half time lead thanks to a diving header from Ryan Manning and long range strike from Jake Bidwell. They continued to dominate the second half and a third goal from Luke Freeman emptied the ground and left the small but vocal travelling support alone with Terry for the final ten, glorious, hate-fuelled minutes. Villa did get a late consolation, but QPR were thoroughly good value for a deserved and memorable win.

Villa: Johnstone 5; El Mohamady 5, Terry 4, Chester 6, Taylor 5 (Davis 56, 5); Jedinak 4, Hourihane 5 (Bjarnison 81, -); Adomah 6, Grealish 6, Snodgrass 4; Grabban 5 (Hogan 67, 5)

Subs not used: Lansbury, Bree, Onomah, Bunn

Goals: Chester 90+1 (assisted Snodgrass)

Bookings: Grealish 90+2 (fighting)

QPR: Smithies 8; Furlong 8, Onuoha 7, Lynch 7, Bidwell 8; Wszolek 7 (Perch 72, 6), Scowen 8, Luongo 7, Manning 8 (Cousins 74, 6); Eze 8 (Freeman 79, 7); Smith 7

Subs not used: Washington, Baptiste, Ingram, Osayi-Samuel

Goals: Manning 12 (assisted Bidwell), Bidwell 33 (assisted Wszolek), Freeman 82 (assisted Furlong)

Bookings: Lynch 59 (foul), Bidwell 90+2 (foul)

Queens Park Rangers 1 Aston Villa 2, Saturday November 18, 2017, Championship

QPR took the lead through Jamie Mackie in the first meeting between the sides last season, and were eventually only beaten 2-1 thanks to the brilliance of local boy Albert Adomah, but in truth it was only the goalkeeping of Alex Smithies that kept it respectable. Mackie bundled in after 18 minutes when Joel Lynch caused panic at a Luke Freeman corner but the R’s shipped an equaliser deep into first half stoppage time when Jack Robinson inadvertently handled a goalbound shot and Adomah converted the penalty. Adomah hit his second in off the post in the second half shortly after Matt Smith had narrowly missed with a volley that had the keeper beaten but in truth Villa were worthy winners.

QPR: Smithies 8; Baptiste 4, Lynch 5, Robinson 6; Cousins 6 (Washington 63, 5), Bidwell 6; Sowen 6, Freeman 6, Luongo 6 (Manning 45, 5); Mackie 5 (Sylla 72, 6), Smith 7

Subs not used: Furlong, Wszolek, Lumley, Wheeler

Goals: Mackie 18 (assisted Freeman)

Bookings: Robinson 53 (foul), Manning 76 (foul)

Villa: Johnstone 6; Hutton 5, Samba 5, Chester 7, Taylor 6; Snodgrass 6 (Jedinak 81, 7), Whelan 6, Hourihane 7, Adomah 8 (Bjarnason 90+1, -); Onomah 8 (De Laet 86, -); Davis 8

Subs not used: Lansbury, Grealish, Steer, O’Hare

Goals: Adomah 45+3 (penalty, won Hourihane), 58 (assisted Hourihane)

Bookings: Whelan 38 (foul), Snodgrass 60 (foul), Taylor 90+1 (foul)

Aston Villa 1 QPR 0, Tuesday April 4, 2017, Championship

Jonathan Kodija’s fifth minute strike at the end of a flowing move was enough to settle the meeting between these two sides at Villa Park in April 2017. Kodija had already struck the post before that and the game was part of QPR’s second six game losing streak of the season but the R’s deserved a point for a spirited second half rally which, as is all too often the case with this team, just couldn’t yield a goal.

Aston Villa: Johnstone 6, Hutton 6, Chester 6, Baker 6, Taylor 6, Jedinak 7, Lansbury 7, Bacuna 6, Adomah 6 (Hogan 77, 6), Amavi 7 (Green 85, -) Kodjia 6 (Elphick 90, -)

Subs not used: Hourihane, Bree, Bunn, Grealish

Goal: Kodjia 5 (assisted Bacuna)

Yellow Card: Kodjia 87 (foul)

QPR: Smithies 6, Bidwell 6, Onouha 6, Hall 5, Furlong 6 (Petrasso 75, 5), Mackie 6, Freeman 7, Luongo 8, Goss 6 (Washington 72, 6) N’Gbakoto 6, Sylla 5 (Smith 64, 6)

Subs not used: Ingram, Wszolek, Perch, Manning

Yellow Card: Mackie 23 (foul)

QPR 0 Aston Villa 1, Saturday December 18, 2016, Championship

Aston Villa may have only won one away league match in 18 months prior to this, and they may have only won this one by a single late goal from Jonathan Kodija after he’d rolled Joel Lynch for the umpteenth time in the game, but really this was an absolute hammering for a beleaguered QPR team at the time. Only the flying form of Alex Smithies, who saved a first half penalty from Kodija and then made a string of excellent saves in the second half just to maintain things at 0-0 for as long as he could. Rangers ended the game beaten, without a single meaningful effort on goal, as part of a six-match losing run.

QPR: Smithies 8; Perch 6, Onuoha 5, Lynch 5, Bidwell 5; Hall 6, Luongo 5, Chery 5 (Mackie 78, 6); Wzsolek 5 (Shodipo 62, 6), Washington 5 (Sylla 46, 6), Ngbakoto 5

Subs not used: Sandro, Borysiuk, Ingram, Polter

Bookings: Luongo 81 (foul)

Villa: Bunn 5; Hutton 6, Chester 6, Baker 6, Amavi 7; Adoma 6, Jedinak 7, Gardner 6 (Westwood 89, -), Bacuna 6; McCormack 5 (Agbonlahor 71, 5), Kodija 8 (Gestede 82, -)

Subs not used: Gollini, Elphick, Ayew, Grealish

Goals: Kodija 75 (assisted Hutton)

Bookings: Jedinak 43 (foul), Chester 63 (foul), Bunn 90+3 (time wasting)

Villa 3 QPR 3, Tuesday April 7, 2015, Premier League

QPR led twice, trailed once, and eventually ended up with a 3-3 draw when these sides last met at Villa Park in April 2015. Rangers came into this midweek relegation six pointer on the back of a 4-1 win at West Brom at the weekend and with Matt Phillips having the game of his QPR career they nearly reignited an ultimately doomed survival bid with a second road win in four days. Phillips opened the scoring after seven minutes and later set up Charlie Austin to make it 3-2 with just ten minutes to go. In between Clint Hill finally broke his Premier League scoring duck with a powerful header from a corner. But Villa had survived at QPR’s expense once before because of the power and goalscoring of Christian Benteke and the giant Belgian rescued his team, and manager Tim Sherwood whose set up for this game was all wrong, with a fantastic hat trick. The first a surging run from the halfway line and blasted finish just after Phillips had scored, the second set up by Agbonlahor, third a long range free kick immediately after the Austin goal. Wonderful stuff.

Villa: Guzan 6; Bacuna 6 (Lowton 75, 6), Vlaar 7, Clark 6, Richardson 4; Sanchez 6, Delph 6, Cleverley 5 (N'Zogbia 81, -); Grealish 7 (Cole 70, 5), Benteke 9, Agbonlahor 7

Subs not used: Baker, Okore, Weimann, Given

Goals: Benteke 10 (unassisted), 33 (assisted Agbonlahor), 83 (free kick, won N'Zogbia)

QPR: Green 7; Isla 5 (Traore 50, 6), Caulker 5, Onuoha 6, Hill 6; Phillips 8, Barton 7, Sandro 6 (Doughty 70, 7), Kranjcar 4 (Henry 50, 8); Zamora 6, Austin 6

Subs not used: McCarthy, Hoilett, Mitchell, Grego-Cox

Goals: Phillips 7 (assisted Zamora ), Hill 55 (assisted Phillips), Austin 78 (assisted Phillips)

Bookings: Sandro 34 (foul), Kranjcar 35 (foul), Austin 57 (foul), Hill 82 (foul)

QPR 2 Villa 0, Monday October 27, 2014, Premier League

Aston Villa had lost four matches without scoring a goal prior to arriving at Loftus Road for the televised first meeting between these sides that season. That was all the encouragement QPR needed as they turned in one of their most complete performances (not a lot of strong competition) of the campaign, winning with a Charlie Austin goal in each half. First he strode onto a Bobby Zamora knock down and belted one in from long range, then in the second half he swept home from closer in after Isla and Vargas had combined well down the right. With Yun Suk-Young setting the tempo from left back and Richard Dunne imperious against his former club this was a rare bright moment in a poor season overall.

QPR: Green 8; Isla 7, Caulker 7, Dunne 8, Suk-Young 8; Vargas 7 (Traore 87, -), Sandro 6, Henry 7, Fer 6 (Kranjcar 90, -); Austin 7, Zamora 7 (Hoilett 63, 7)

Subs not used: Ferdinand, Hill, Phillips, Murphy

Goals: Austin 16 (assisted Zamora ), 69 (assisted Vargas)

Villa: Guzan 6; Lowton 6, Vlaar 5, Clark 6, Cissokho 6; Cleverley 6, Westwood 7 (Cole 70, 5), Sanchez 8; Agbonlahor 6, Weimann 6 (Bent 70, 4), Benteke 6

Subs not used: Okore, Bacuna, Richardson, N'Zogbia, Given

Bookings: Weimann 57 (foul), Lowton 76 (foul)

Aston Villa 3 QPR 2, Saturday March 16, 2013, Premier League

QPR suffered a damaging defeat at fellow strugglers Aston Villa in their quest to avoid relegation from the Premier League in 2012/13. The R’s seemed destined for the drop, but consecutive wins against Sunderland and Southampton provided hope and with Villa in poor form and one of the teams in the immediate vicinity of QPR on the league table the March trip to Villa Park looked crucial. Jermaine Jenas gave the R’s a deserved first half lead, and only a wonder save from Brad Guzan prevented Chris Samba adding to that. But the game swung in three minutes of first half injury time when first Jose Bosingwa hit the Villa post with a free kick, and then the hosts equalised when Julio Cesar made a hash of a high ball into his area and Agbonlahor pounced for a leveller. When Anders Weimann scored on the hour the game looked to be up but man of the match Andros Townsend struck back to make it 2-2 and again there only looked like being one winner until more suspect defending and goalkeeping let Christian Benteke in for a crushing late third for the hosts.

Villa: Guzan 8, Lowton 7, Clark 5, Baker 5 (Bennett 20, 5), Vlaar 6, Westwood 6, Sylla 6 (N’Zogbia 58, 6), Bannan 6, Agbonlahor 7, Weimann 8 (Bowery 84, -), Benteke 7

Subs not used: Given, Dawkins, Carruthers, Holman

Goals: Agbonlahor 45 (assisted Lowton), Weimann 58 (unassisted), Benteke 81 (assisted Weimann)

Booked: Sylla 30 (foul), Bannan 41 (foul), Weimann 45 (dissent)

QPR: Cesar 3, Bosingwa 5, Hill 5, Samba 7, Da Silva 5 (Taarabt 66, 7), Park 6 (Mackie 87, -), Jenas 6, Mbia 6, Townsend 7, Remy 7, Zamora 7 (Hoilett 45, 6)

Subs not used: Murphy, Onuoha, Wright-Phillips, Granero

Goals: Jenas 23 (assisted Zamora), Townsend 73 (assisted Remy)

Bookings: Mbia 12 (foul), Hoilett 88 (foul)

QPR 1 Aston Villa 1, Saturday December 1, 2012, Premier League

Harry Redknapp’s first home match in charge of QPR was against Aston Villa at the start of December that season. Having tightened the leaky defence and secured a 0-0 draw at Sunderland during the week in his first outing the new manager will have been disappointed to see goalkeeper Robert Green concede a soft goal early in the game. Brett Holman’s volley from the edge of the box was firmly struck, but Green should still have done more than simply palm the ball into the corner of his own net. The R’s were quickly on terms when Jamie Mackie expertly guided a header home from a Samba Diakite cross but they lacked sufficient creativity and cutting edge to grab a first win of the season in the second half and ultimately had to settle for a point.

QPR: Green 5, Bosingwa 6, Hill 7, Nelsen 7, Traore 5, Diakite 7 (Hoilett 67, 5), Mbia 7 (Derry 40, 5), Granero 5 (Park 46, 4), Taarabt 7, Wright-Phillips 6, Mackie 8

Subs not used: Murphy, Cisse, Ferdinand, Fabio

Goals: Mackie 18 (assisted Diakite)

Bookings: Derry 61 (foul)

Villa: Guzan 8, Lowton 6, Clark 6, Baker 6, Lichaj 6, Westwood 6, Bannan 6 (Delph 67, 6), Holman 7 (El Ahmadi 70, 6), Herd 6 (Williams 65, 6), Agbonlahor 7, Benteke 7

Subs not used: Given, Ireland, Bent, Weimann

Goals: Holman 8 (unassisted)

Bookings: Baker 47 (foul), Lowton 62 (foul)

Aston Villa 2 QPR 2, Wednesday February 1, 2012, Premier League

The Mark Hughes era began in earnest at Villa Park the season before, the day after the close of the transfer window. With Djibril Cisse making his debut and Bobby Zamora and Samba Diakite also secured late on Hughes felt ready to take on the challenge and Rangers made a lightning start to the game. Cisse kept his record of regularly scoring on debuts going with a crisp volley into the far corner when Shaun Wright-Phillips had a shot that deflected into his path. And the lead was doubled when a cross from another newcomer Taye Taiwo was headed into his own net under no pressure by Stephen Warnock. However, Darren Bent bagged one before half time and when Charles N’Zogbia volleyed in ten minutes from time Rangers were hanging on for a point. Ultimately the R’s were lucky to get away with a late handball appeal in their own penalty area. As it turned out, they’d have to wait until August to take another point from an away match.

Villa: Given 6, Hutton 7, Cuellar 6, Dunne 6, Warnock 5, Clark 6 (Bannan 70, 6), Ireland 6, Petrov 7, N’Zogbia 7, Keane 7, Bent 7

Subs not used: Guzan, Lichaj, Baker, Gardner, Heskey, Weimann

Goals: Bent 44 (assisted Hutton), N’Zogbia 80 (assisted Petrov)

QPR: Kenny 7, Young 6, Onuoha 6, Ferdinand 6, Taiwo 5, Mackie 5, Derry 5 (Ephraim 73, 6), Barton 6, Wright-Phillips 6, Cisse 7 (Macheda 81, -), Hulse 6 (Smith 54, 6)

Subs not used: Cerny, Hill, Hall, Balanta

Goals: Cisse 11 (assisted Wright-Phillips), Warnock og 22 (assisted Taiwo)

Bookings: Young (foul)

QPR 1 Aston Villa 1, Sunday September 25, 2011, Premier League

QPR needed an injury time own goal from Richard Dunne to rescue a point from the Loftus Road meeting between these sides that season after falling victim to a series of incorrect refereeing decisions. Villa took a second half lead from the penalty spot when referee Michael Oliver very harshly adjudged that Armand Traore had pulled back Gabby Agbonlahor at the back post when he’d done nothing of the sort. Barry Bannan converted the spot kick but Oliver further incensed the home ranks when he twice turned down penalty appeals for handball at the other end, including a blatant one from Alan Hutton who palmed Anton Ferdinand’s goal bound header away for a corner. Some justice was done in stoppage time when Dunne hacked into his own net after hard work from Helguson but QPR would have won the game with a different referee in charge.

QPR: Kenny 7, Young 7, Ferdinand 8, Hall 7, Traore 6, Faurlin 6, Derry 6 (Helguson 79, 7), Wright-Phillips 7 (Smith 86, -), Taarabt 7, Barton 6, Bothroyd 7 (Campbell 66, 6)

Subs Not Used: Murphy, Orr, Buzsaky, Connolly

Sent Off: Traore 90 (two bookings)

Booked: Traore (foul), Traore (foul)

Goals: Dunne 90 og (assisted Helguson)

Aston Villa: Given 7, Hutton 5, Collins 7, Dunne 8, Warnock 6, Petrov 6, Ireland 5, Delph 7, N'Zogbia 6 (Weimann 85, -), Bannan 8 (Albrighton 72, 7), Agbonlahor 6

Subs Not Used: Guzan, Delfouneso, Beye, Lowry, Gardner

Booked: Warnock (foul), Hutton (foul), Collins (foul), Petrov (foul), Agbonlahor (foul), N'Zogbia (foul)

Goals: Bannan 58 (penalty)

Aston Villa 0 QPR 1, Wednesday September 24, 2008, League Cup

QPR sprang a surprise in the League Cup when they visited Villa Park in 2008. Having seen off Swindon and Carlisle in earlier rounds with Iain Dowie in charge, no mean feat for a club with our recent cup record, QPR travelled to the West Midlands backed by a sizeable away following. The crucial goal came from the head of Damion Stewart who was magnificent that night, marking John Carew superbly. Gareth Barry went through on the goal late in the game but chose to try and execute and ambitious chip which he made a mess of. Rangers went on to play at Old Trafford in the next round, losing 1-0 to a late penalty, but by that point Dowie had been given his marching orders by Flavio Briatore.

Aston Villa: Guzan 6, Gardner 6, Cuellar 6, Knight 5, Shorey 6, Osbourne 5 (Routledge 67, 5), Petrov 5, Barry 5, Ashley Young 7, Harewood 4 (Agbonlahor 67, 6), Carew 7

Subs Not Used: Friedel, Delfouneso, Davies, Salifou, Reo-Coker

Booked: Cuellar (foul) Gardner (foul)

QPR: Cerny 7, Connolly 7, Hall 8, Stewart 9, Delaney 5, Mahon 7, Rowlands 8, Parejo 8, Ledesma 8 (Balanta 90, -), Buzsaky 7 (Leigertwood 81, -), Agyemang 6 (Di Carmine 66, 6)

Subs Not Used: Camp, Blackstock, Gorkss, Ephraim

Booked: Delaney (foul)

Goals: Stewart 58 (assisted Parejo)

Previous Results

Head to Head >>> QPR wins 24 >>> Draws 13 >>> Villa wins 21

2017/18 Villa 1 QPR 3 (Manning, Bidwell, Freeman)

2017/18 QPR 1 Villa 2 (Mackie)

2016/17 Villa 1 QPR 0

2016/17 QPR 0 Villa 1

2014/15 Villa 3 QPR 3 (Phillips, Hill, Austin)

2014/15 QPR 2 Villa 0 (Austin 2)

2012/13 Villa 3 QPR 2 (Jenas, Townsend)

2012/13 QPR 1 Villa 1 (Mackie)

2011/12 Villa 2 QPR 2 (Cisse, Warnock og)

2011/12 QPR 1 Villa 1 (Dunne og)

2008/09 Villa 0 QPR 1* (Stewart)

2004/05 Villa 3 QPR 1* (McLeod)

1995/96 Villa 4 QPR 2 (Dichio, Gallen)

1995/96 QPR 1 Villa 0 (Gallen)

1995/96 Villa 1 QPR 0*

1994/95 Villa 2 QPR 1 (Yates)

1994/95 QPR 2 Villa 0 (Dichio, Penrice)

1993/94 QPR 2 Villa 2 (McGrath og, Penrice)

1993/94 Villa 4 QPR 1 (Ferdinand)

1992/93 QPR 2 Villa 1 (Ferdinand, Allen)

1992/93 Villa 2 QPR 0

1991/92 Villa 0 QPR 1 (Ferdinand)

1991/92 QPR 0 Villa 1

1990/91 QPR 2 Villa 1 (B Allen, Tilson)

1990/91 Villa 2 QPR 2 (Wegerle pen, Sinton)

1989/90 QPR 1 Villa 1 (Clarke)

1989/90 Villa 1 QPR 3 (T Francis 3)

1988/89 QPR 1 Villa 0 (Sinton)

1988/89 Villa 2 QPR 1 (T Francis)

1986/87 Villa 0 QPR 1 (Keown og)

1986/87 QPR 1 Villa 0 (Bannister)

1985/86 QPR 0 Villa 1

1985/86 Villa 1 QPR 2 (Bannister 2

1984/85 Villa 5 QPR 2 (Bannister 2)

1984/85 QPR 2 Villa 0 (Bannister, Gregory)

1984/85 QPR 1 Villa 0* (Gregory)

1983/84 Villa 2 QPR 1 (Charles)

1983/84 QPR 2 Villa 1 (Stainrod, Withe og)

1978/79 Villa 3 QPR 1 (C Allen)

1978/79 QPR 1 Villa 0 (Harkouk)

1977/78 Villa 1 QPR 1 (Smith og)

1977/78 Villa 1 QPR 0*

1977/78 QPR 1 Villa 2 (Eastoe)

1976/77 Villa 1 QPR 1 (Abbott)

1976/77 Villa 3 QPR 0

1976/77 Villa 2 QPR 2 (G Francis, Eastoe)

1976/77 QPR 0 Villa 0

1976/77 QPR 2 Villa 1 (Masson, Clement)

1975/76 Villa 0 QPR 2 (G Francis, Hollins)

1975/76 QPR 1 Villa 1 (G Francis)

1972/73 QPR 1 Villa 0 (G Francis)

1972/73 Villa 0 QPR 1 (Leach)

1969/70 QPR 4 Villa 2 (Bridges 2, Marsh 2)

1969/70 Villa 1 QPR 1 (Marsh)

1968/69 Villa 2 QPR 1** (I Morgan)

1967/68 Villa 1 QPR 2 (Leach, Bradley)

1967/68 QPR 3 Villa 0 (Sanderson 2, Lazarus)

1919/20 Villa 2 QPR 1** (Birch)

* - League Cup

** - FA Cup


Gary Penrice >>> Aston Villa 1991 >>> QPR 1991-1995

Bristol-born Penrice became one of a clutch of former Rovers players who moved to Loftus Road in the early 1990s to play for manager Gerry Francis.

Penrice had initially been a trainee at Bristol City before being released into non-league football because the coaching staff at Ashton Gate felt he was too small. He played for Mangotsfield while training as a plumber but got a second bit of the league football cherry when Bristol Rovers offered him a deal after a trial.

Rovers was the club Penrice and his father supported and he bagged 20 goals in his first full season – 1988/89 – as they made the Third Division play off final only to lose to Port Vale. Rovers won the league a year later but Penrice had been bought by Watford before the end of the season for a club record fee of £500,000. He scored 18 goals in 43 appearances during a year at Vicarage Road before his ascent up the leagues continued with a move to First Division Aston Villa for £1m.

His progress was halted at Villa Park by a broken leg, and with the likes of Dean Saunders and Dalian Atkinson heading to that corner of Birmingham Penrice was deemed surplus to requirement after just one goal in 20 appearances. Enter QPR, who were by now under the charge of former Bristol Rovers manager Gerry Francis who was looking for a partner for the new hot property of English football Les Ferdinand.

Penrice cost £600,000, leaving Villa after just eight months, and soon found himself surrounded by former Pirates team mates including Steve Yates, Devon White and his former school friend Ian Holloway. Penrice actually made his QPR debut as a substitute against Villa in a 1-0 defeat at Loftus Road, but was in and out of the team initially and had to wait seven appearances and two months for his first goal. Like buses, when one came another quickly followed. On as a sub in a game at Coventry that QPR trailed 2-0, Penrice scored twice near the end to salvage a point and quickly followed that up with his first at Loftus Road in a 1-1 draw with Wimbledon.

Penrice scored six in the 1992/93 campaign, including a memorable double in a 4-1 home win against Spurs, as QPR finished fifth in the first ever Premier League. He got eight the season after including strikes in a 4-0 away win at West ham and a 4-3 success at Norwich. Penrice then suffered from the emergence of Kevin Gallen which moved him down the pecking order in the 1994/95 season, although he bagged another brace against Coventry and a hug-a-stranger-moment length of the field effort against his old Aston Villa side in the very final minute of a tense 2-0 win at the end of October.

Ray Wilkins replaced Gerry Francis midway through the campaign and Penrice was mostly used as a substitute, if at all, after that. Three substitute appearances at the start of the 1995/96 relegation season preceded a move back to Watford and then later a return to Bristol Rovers where he first played with Ian Holloway again, and then joined the coaching staff alongside him when he became manager.

Since retirement he has coached alongside Holloway at Bristol Rovers, QPR, Plymouth and Leicester and worked as a European scout for Stoke City. He is now a freelance scout working in Europe for several clubs.

Others >>>Luke Young, Villa 2008-2011, QPR 2011-2014 >>> Kyle Walker, QPR (loan) 2010, Villa (loan) 2011 >>> Wayne Routledge, Villa 2008-2009, QPR 2009-2010, 2011 (loan) >>> Stefan Moore, QPR 2005-2008, Villa 2001-2005 >>> Peter Crouch, QPR 2000-2001, Villa 2002-2004 >>> Steve Hodge, Villa 1985-1986, QPR 1994-1995 >>> Simon Stainrod, QPR 1980-1985, Villa 1985-1987 >>>John Gregory, Aston Villa 1977-1979, (manager) 1998-2002, QPR 1981-1985, (manager) 2006-2007 >>> John Burridge (again), Villa 1975-1978, QPR 1980-1982

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CamberleyR added 18:40 - Oct 26
That injury time Gary Penrice goal in 1994 is up there as one of all time fave moments watching the Rs. Never forget his little legs pumping away nineteen to the dozen trying to evade Bosnich's capture...

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