After the tough Easter period we are now into the so called ‘easier’ games, well today certainly wasn’t going to be easy. The majority of fans were expecting a comfortable win for the lads, me being one of them, but they had to grind it out. Dean Whitehead came in for Liam Miller, Daryl Murphy replaced Stephen Elliott and Ross Wallace came in for Tobias Hysen.
The lads started quite well and were rewarded within the opening seven minutes with a well worked goal. David Connolly slotted through a fantastic ball for the on running Whitehead who coolly placed the ball under the QPR ‘keeper. Fans favourite Nosworthy was at the root of the move. Despite carving the QPR defence open quite easily we seemed to be missing that midas touch which we’ve had in recent games and were unable to make more of an impact on the score line. We began to take our foot off the gas and allowed QPR to come back into the game steadily. Maybe it was too easy for the lads. After Ward had brought down Blackstock in the box they had a great chance to get back into the game with a penalty. Rowland had no problem with converting the spot kick and smashed it down the middle. We kept on making chances, but they were at best half chances.
Half time 1-1
After the break Wallace went off for Stern John, Wallace appeared to be injured at the end of the first half; Murphy went to the left to allow John to play up front with Connolly. We were quite sloppy in our play and seemed unable to string two or three passes together. We were in control of the game but needed to make our dominance count, with time running out it wasn’t looking too good. After a spell of good pressure we made our dominance count in the 76th minute. A well worked free-kick from Edwards laid the ball up perfectly for Grant Leadbitter, who from all of 25 yards; slotted the ball into the bottom right corner of the ‘keepers net. It was an absolutely fantastic strike from Leadbitter to give us the lead, and not for the first time this season either. We were comfortable from then to the end, even when free-kick specialist Idiakez came on with a fantastic chance for QPR which was comfortably saved by Darren Ward.
Another terrific attendance, though it could have been much better. 39,206 where there to cheer the lads to victory today and hopefully we can better that on the last home game of the season against Burnley on April 27th. Another vital win to move us into touching distance of the promised land, though there is a lot of hard work to be done yet.
MOTM – Danny Collins, in a game which nobody really stood out Collins was solid and did everything needed of him in the game. After a poor season last year Collins has came back a lot stronger this season and showed improvement, though some sections of the crowd are still quick to get on his back.