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Queens Park Rangers 0, Norwich City 0

PUBLISHED: 17:00 16 October 2010 | UPDATED: 19:08 03 November 2010

Grant Holt goes crashing during a penalty area tangle with Clint Hill but thoughts of an early lead are short-lived as Wes Hoolahan misses the penalty. Picture: Paul Chesterton / Focus Images

Grant Holt goes crashing during a penalty area tangle with Clint Hill but thoughts of an early lead are short-lived as Wes Hoolahan misses the penalty. Picture: Paul Chesterton / Focus Images

Focus Images 2010

Norwich City collected a well-deserved point from Championship leaders Queens Park Rangers at Loftus Road - but it might have been three but for a first-half penalty miss by Wes Hoolahan.

Hoolahan, who had scored from the spot in the previous two matches, rolled his penalty wide after 28 minutes after Rangers full-back Clint Hill had wrestled skipper Grant Holt to the ground.

His miss ended the Canaries run of scoring in 32 consecutive away league games, stretching back to March 2009, while Rangers still have yet to concede a goal at home in the Championship this season.

There was a double blow for City with defender Elliott Ward picking up his fifth booking of the season and now facing a one-match ban, and Adam Drury hobbling off injured after an hour.

Paul Lamberts men, watched by more than 3,000 travelling fans, plus new director Stephen Fry, gave as good as they got but were grateful to midfielder Andrew Crofts for heading off the line from Hoolahans former Blackpool team-mate, Kaspars Gorkss, 10 minutes from time.

MATCH STATS

• QUEENS PARK RANGERS: Kenny; Walker, Connolly, Gorkss, Hill; Derry; Buzsaky, Taarabt, Ephraim; Mackie; Helguson.

Subs: Cerny, Leigertwood (for Buzsaky, 26), Orr, Tommy Smith (for Taarabt, 77), Faurlin, Agyemang (for Ephraim, 69), Clarke.

 

• NORWICH CITY: Ruddy; Russell Martin, Barnett, Ward, Drury; Crofts; Korey Smith, Lappin; Hoolahan; Jackson, Holt.

Subs: Rudd, Askou, Steven Smith (for Drury, 58), Fox, McNamee, Chris Martin (for Hoolahan, 69), Johnson.

 

• MAN OF THE MATCH: Leon Barnett

 

• ATTENDANCE: 18,059 (3,122 Norwich City fans)

 

• REFEREE: Andy Penn (West Midlands)

 

• YELLOW CARDS: QPR: Hill (foul on Holt, 28), Mackie (foul on Russell Martin, 59). NORWICH: Ward (foul on Taarabt, 38), Barnett (foul on Hill, 79), Lappin (foul on Walker, 89)

 

• ADDED TIME: 1 min / 3 mins

 

• SHOTS ON:

QPR 3, City 2

• SHOTS OFF:

QPR 8, City 4

• FOULS:

QPR 12, City 15

• CORNERS:

QPR 10, City 7

• OFFSIDES:

QPR 1, City 2

Left-back Drury returned to the starting line-up after missing the 3-0 win at Bristol City with a hamstring injury he suffered in the pre-match warm-up.

Steven Smith reverted to the substitutes bench at the expense of Luke Daley.

Rangers boss Neil Warnock relied on an unchanged side after eight wins and two draws in the first 10 league games.

Drury made an important headed clearance from Taarabts cross in the third minute, and Helguson was off target with a header from another Taarabt centre as the hosts kept up the pressure.

City forced the first corner of the match in the fifth minute, Barnett heading wide from Lappins kick.

Ward made an important interception from Ephraims cross and as play switched to the other end, Holt wriggled free of the hesitant Connolly to test Kenny with a toe-poke that the keeper managed to claw away.

Walker amused the visiting fans with a throw-in that he put straight out for a goal-kick but Rangers kept pressing and won their first corner, Gorkss having a shot deflected wide from Taarabts kick.

Taarabt was a lively customer and struck a swerving right-foot shot that Ruddy clutched gratefully to his chest.

Mackie wasted a promising break with a poor cross that drifted out for a goal-kick.

Taarabt was next to threaten as he burst away from Ward and Russell Martin had to hook his cross out for a corner, Lappin heading clear from Taarabts kick.

Gorkss had to leave the field for attention to a cut above his eye, while Buzsaky, who also needed was clearly hobbling and had to make way for Leigertwood after 26 minutes.

One minute later, City squandered a golden chance to take the lead when Hoolahan missed from the penalty spot.

Holt was wrestled to the ground by Hill as he tried to jump to meet Hoolahans cross and referee Penn pointed straight to the spot.

Hill was booked for his trouble but Hoolahan, who had scored from the spot in the previous two matches, tried to put the kick to keeper Kennys left and instead put it well past the post.

Seven minutes before the break, Ward picked up his fifth yellow card of the season, and with it a one-match ban, for a rudimentary challenge on Taarabt, whose pace was a constant threat to the Canaries.

Holt blocked a close-range effort from Helguson as Rangers began to step up the pace as the interval approached.

City forced another corner in the final minute of the half, played to the edge of the area by Lappin for Hoolahan to cross, and Barnetts header was cleared for another flag-kick, but this time Lappin overhit it.

HALF-TIME: Queens Park Rangers 0, Norwich City 0

Within a minute of the restart, City won a free-kick on the right and Lappin swung it into the danger area, but Gorkss - now with his head bandaged - jumped to head clear.

Barnett was left hobbling after appearing to collide with Ruddy as Taarabt aimed a free-kick towards the six-yard box.

Hill headed wide from a corner but was penalised for a foul on Holt, and Barnett took another knock, this time in the face from Helguson.

The home crowd had been roused from their torpor as Rangers began to launch a more concerted assault but with Drury and Barnett especially outstanding, City held firm.

Drury, however, had been hobbling since one timely challenge and had to make way for Steven Smith after 58 minutes.

On the hour, Russell Martin was the victim of a wild challenge by Mackie that earned the Scotland international a yellow card.

As the home side continued to threaten, Taarabt sliced a shot wide from the edge of the area and a long-range effort from Walker was diverted over the bar by the head of team-mate Mackie.

There were appeals for a penalty from the home crowd when Steven Smith appeared to push Ephraim over in the area, but referee Penn was unimpressed.

There was a double change midway through the half when Agyemang replaced Ephraim for Rangers, and Chris Martin was sent on for Hoolahan.

Helguson headed over from a good chance seconds later, and Taarabt curled a free-kick over the top.

Holt needed attention to his left shoulder after a challenge from Gorkss, prompting a short delay, and when play resumed Helguson sent in another header, but straight at Ruddy.

Holt missed the chance to put City head with 15 minutes left when Korey Smith and Jackson combined well to put the skipper clear on the left side of the penalty area, but he fired over the top.

Warnock made his final change soon afterwards with Tommy Smith replaced Taarabt, and in the next attack, Walker fired across the face of the goal.

Barnett was shown the yellow card after a scuffle with Hill on halfway, and City had a narrow escape with 10 minutes left when Crofts headed off the line from a Gorkss header.

Lappin was booked with two minutes left for a foul on Walker.

In stoppage time, Ruddy dived to his left to save from Tommy Smith.

RESULT: Queens Park Rangers 0, Norwich City 0


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Podcast - QPR 0, Norwich City 0

Post-match - Paul Lambert

Post-match - Neil Warnock

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