Team: Crowther, Coyne, Ford, Harris, Brown, O’Brien, Davenport, Arthur, Morgan-Cummings, German, Parker.
Subs Used: Fernandez for Morgan-Cummings (62), Sutherland for Davenport (72), Wright for Coyne (82)
Subs Not Used: Goodchild, Smith
Goal scorers: Coyne (pen) 26, Parker 45, Ford 71, Parker (pen) 90
Youth Team Boss Steve Brown continued with his preferred 4-3-3 formation and he also continued with eight players who had seen action in two games earlier this week, away at Peterborough on Monday evening and in the Reserve team that turned out at Loftus Road on Wednesday. The lads will be pleased of a rest before their trip to second placed Luton Town next Saturday.
Early on, there were few chances of note for either team. Rangers were patient and content to knock the ball around across the back four and midfield to retain possession for long periods. It was good to see players confident on the ball and happy to probe for an opening rather than just hit it long for the pacy front three to chase. With nearly 10 minutes on the clock, Aaron Morgan-Cummings went on a run down the right hand side, cut in and struck a left foot shot against the post and the rebound was cleared. Soon after, Antonio German drifted out to the left and got past his man but his cross was cleared for a corner. Then Morgan-Cummings nutmegged the Posh left back but his low curling cross was too close to the keeper.
German received a ball ‘into feet’ near the halfway line and took a heavy challenge as he flicked the ball first time into the path of Josh Parker. The ref played a good advantage and Parker broke forward, cut in from the left but fired high and wide of the target. The next action of note saw German go on a jinking run outside the area and fire a left foot piledriver just over the bar. Continued pressure resulted in a handball in the box and Billy Coyne confidently struck home the penalty as the keeper dived the wrong way…1-0 to the Rangers. In a swift break, Matt O’Brien joined the attack but took a poor touch and the chance was lost. Half an hour into the game and the visitors won their first corner. Coyne made a well-timed tackle then broke forward and passed to German who then fed Morgan-Cummings on the right. He beat his man but the cross was easily cleared.
Peterborough’s second corner of the game was only half cleared and a well struck volley from the edge of the area smacked against the post and the rebound was hacked clear. This was a lucky break for Rangers after such a dominant start. Ten minutes before half-time, Chris Arthur received some treatment after taking a knock. There followed some excellent football from the R’s as the ball was moved from left to right into the feet of Morgan-Cummings. He found Coyne as he overlapped down the right wing and his good cross found German but his shot lacked power. Then on the left hand side, Parker forced a corner but Arthur struggled with his kick into the wind and the ball curled out of play. Another corner moments later, was well delivered by Arthur and headed just wide at the near post. Then O’Brien set up Morgan-Cummings with a cross-field pass and his low shot was fumbled behind by the keeper when he might have done better. Arthur came across to the right but spurned the chance of an in-swinging corner to pick out Coyne with a short pass. His confident touch and excellent cross was glanced into the far corner by Parker. Half-Time: 2-0.
Not long into the 2nd half, an accurate Chris Arthur free-kick from a wide position 30 yards out just eluded the players in the area. Soon after, he received a yellow card for dissent. A quiet period of the game followed as QPR sat back a little but the visitors couldn’t create any chances of note. In another move down the right, a fantastic cross by Coyne picked out Parker in space but he failed to make contact with his attempted side-foot volley. Another corner was half cleared and a great delivery back in by Parker set up Josh Ford but his downward header was well saved. Danny Fernandez replaced Morgan-Cummings, Parker moved to the right and Fernandez to the left. In a move reminiscent of Chris Arthur in his old position out on the wing, he surged forward, took on the full back and his fierce shot was well saved at the near post. Then his corner was fired across the edge of the 6 yard box and Ed Harris just failed to connect with a diving header.
Arthur was well involved in the game and his free-kick from the left wing found Parker beyond the far post and he expertly nodded the ball back across the goal for the unmarked Ford to guide in a volley from a couple of yards out with the outside of his right boot. With the game virtually won, Steve Brown introduced 14 year-old Frankie Sutherland for the quietly efficient Danny Davenport. The youngster moved into the right midfield berth as O’Brien moved into Davenport’s position in the centre. Ten minutes later, Michael Wright replaced Billy Coyne at right back. Rangers eased off a little in the closing stages and Posh then forced two corners. Reece Crowther was finally called into some serious action to tip over the first corner but the R’s cleared the second. Arthur nearly set up another chance after a swift breakaway. Parker won a penalty in injury time. After a tenacious run where he beat two players, his progress was halted right on the bye-line. Despite claims (from some of the home supporters) that he’d over-run the ball, he calmly slotted in the penalty in a similar fashion to Coyne’s earlier effort.
Ultimately this was a comfortable win for Rangers, their eighth in a row in the league ! The wide men, Morgan-Cummings and Parker looked lively and Arthur played well, especially in the 2nd half when he reminded us that he is a dangerous attacking force when he gets the chance to get further forward. Finally, we spotted Akos Buzsaky practicing his free-kick technique over on the main training pitch and we heard the good news that Danny Maguire has now started running after his foot injury. The Saturday Morning Mob included Alan Barnes, Rob Bennett, Steve, Roger, Clive snr, James Luck, Pat, Tom and Albert.