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Match Report: Queens Park Rangers 1 Wolverhampton Wanderers 2

Sunday 5th February 2012
After Djibril Cisse's sending off in the first half, a goal apiece from Matt Jarvis and substitute Kevin Doyle cancelled out Bobby Zamora's early strike to ensure Wolves ended their nine-game winless streak, which stretched back to December 4th.

New signing Zamora struck after just 16 minutes in his first game for the Hoops, running on to meet Shaun Wright-Phillips's lay-off to put the hosts ahead.

But fellow newcomer Cisse was sent off just after half an hour, which altered the game and signalled a resurgence for Mick McCarthy's men after half-time.

Jarvis equalised for Wolves with some tricky footwork almost immediately after the break as he curled the ball past Paddy Kenny into the corner, and Doyle, after coming on at half-time, put the visitors ahead on 70 minutes.

The win may have relinquished some of the pressure on Wolves's beleaguered manager McCarthy, with West Brom next up. QPR, however, have now lost a total of 15 points from winning positions in the Premier League this season, the most of any team, and will most certainly point to the untimely loss of Cisse as a determining factor in their defeat.

Rangers started brightly, and before long had gained control of the midfield with the flair of Adel Taarabt, who had a shot from distance fizz wide of Wayne Hennessey's goal.

But then former England striker Zamora, who completed his move to the club on deadline day from Fulham, poked home into the middle of the opposition goal.

More bad news followed for Wanderers, as Emmanuel Frimpong limped off with what appeared to be a knee injury after 24 minutes, and the Arsenal loanee was replaced by Sylvan Ebanks-Blake. But then the major talking point of the game, as French striker Cisse reacted badly to a late tackle by Roger Johnson by grabbing the defender by the throat before being held back by his own team-mates. Referee Mark Clattenburg responded by booking Johnson for the foul, and then showed a straight red to the hot-tempered Cisse, citing violent conduct.

QPR hadn't really been threatened by their Midlands counterparts before this, but were forced to play out the rest of the game with only 10 men.

The dismissal changed the game after the break, as Wolves began to play with real fire and just a minute after the restart, were back on parity through Jarvis's low, flick of the right boot, sending the ball into the far corner of the net. Wolves had a tremendous spell of dominance following their equaliser, with Steven Fletcher going close soon after, rattling the opposition crossbar with a header, following Jarvis's fine cross. Anton Ferdinand, who had a fantastic game at centre-back, then saved Fletcher's follow up on the line.

After Kevin Doyle had hit the post from long range, Taarabt put a free-kick just wide for Mark Hughes's team, in their first chance since the interval on 55 minutes.

By the 66th minute the game had simmered slightly, but just three minutes later the game was graced with another goal.

Irish international Doyle, who had been consigned to the bench for the last few games, came on at half-time to push on against QPR's man deficit. This tactical decision paid dividends when Jamie O'Hara thumped a ball into the box, which was hooked down by Ebanks-Blake, and then seized upon by Doyle, who made no mistake from eight yards out. Wolves contained Rangers after the goal, until the last ten minutes, when the home side tried to press forward in the hope of salvaging a point.

And it took a magnificent one-handed save from Hennessey to deny Taarabt a 30-yard rocket before Joey Barton hit the type of shot for which the phrase "Give it some welly!" was invented.

He was narrowly off target with his 35-yard thunderbolt, and Wolves were hanging on in there with the minutes ticking down.

Anton Ferdinand squandered his side's best chance of an equaliser late on, as he was fed the ball on the edge of the area by Barton, but scooped it just wide of the left-hand post.

The final whistle sounded to ensure Wolves collected three vital points away from home and they moved out of the relegation zone with the victory, as they move in level on 21 points with QPR, a place behind the Londoners in 17th.
Dan Smith

Total articles: 4

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