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08/11 QPR Part 2

By: Tony Butcher
Date: 09/11/2003

CROSSES into the box, desperate headers out by the hooped ones, the Pontoon roaring, the pressure building. QPR players took it in turns to break up the flow of play by laying on the ground rolling in agony at the slightest touch. Or whack.

Home > 2003-2004 Season > Reports > QPR (h)

Grimsby Town 1 Queens Park Rangers 0
08 Nov 2003, FA Cup Round 1

The referee began to irritate, then infuriate, with petty stoppages, baffling decisions and then plain perverse ones. A foul throw given against Barnard for taking it three yards from the right place, booking Crowe for challenging for a clearance near goal. Then the biggy. Around the 20th minute Town pressed these southern grapes further into the vat. The ball was chipped up to Onuora, just inside the penalty area on the right. Onoura had his back to goal, but controlled the ball with his chest, only to be flattened by a heavy goods vehicle with dodgy brakes. The referee ignored the polite enquiries made by players and crowd alike. And also the impolite reaction to his refusal. Thirty seconds later the noise ratcheted up to 11 on the Spinal Tap scale of earthquake intensity, when Boulding was sent through the middle. Forbes clutched Boulding’s arm like a timorous tot hanging onto the dinner lady. Boulding was pulled in some weird ways, then barged off towards the Lower Smiths/Stones/Findus stand as Day came out to gather the ball. Still Town poured forward, smothering their midfield with a blanket. Let’s call it euthanasia shall we, it meant they didn’t have to endure greater suffering later. It was for the best.

There was a ten minute period where Town didn’t manage to have any efforts on goal, with play confined to the middle third, with yet more spurious stoppages. Crane stooped to head clear and, after the ball had gone, McLeod jumped up and, perhaps misunderstanding the latest developments in mobile phone technology, placed a foot in Crane’s right ear. Crane got up and shoved McLeod in the chest and several other players joined in the buffeting. Barnard waddled over and had seemed to issue harsh words in the direction of Crane. Eventually the referee booked the principle actors in this Feydeau farce. A photographer under the Lower Smiths/Stones/Findus was barracked for failing to return the ball not once, but twice. Remember, three strikes and you’re out. matey. The lull lasted only slightly longer than a Livvo sprint and Town were back, the tourniquet turning ever tighter. Boulding almost sneaked past Day, who came out of his area and kneed the ball away for a Town throw in. Campbell, near the half way line, lifted a perfectly weighted pass down the inside right channel and Boulding was off again, the lone marauding Mariner. He swished onwards, into the box, defenders converging like ducks on newly baked bread. About 10 yards out and just wide of goal Boulding flashed a shot high across Day, who parried excellently across the face of goal. The ball looped up and behind Onoura, with Rowlands eventually flipping the ball away. Ah, Rowlands, such a handy defender to be up against, a man who controlled the ball out pf play for two Town corners.

Like Rushden last week, QPR’s forwards were constantly offside, with Thorpe the major culprit. That or the linesman had been hypnotised to raise his flag whenever they had the ball. So not often then. And then a funny thing happened on the way to the halftime forum. After 41 minutes Campbell collected a pass underneath the Police Box, with two defenders jostling him. The ball bounced up and Campbell raced on. The referee blew his whistle and pointed to his hands. Campbell went bananas, the crowd went ballistic. Absolutely nothing had happened and it was typical of this useless, one sided referee to give a free kick Yeah, great decision, well spotted that man.

Craneyellow card
Barnardyellow card
Croweyellow card


Cas77 mins


Paul Danson


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Nothing came of that free kick, but the last five minutes were played out in front of the rollicking, raging Pontoon. Crosses, corners, blocks and madcap clearances and finally a corner from the right. Anderson curled it into the centre of the box, about eight yards out. Crane barnstormed through the box and hurled himself forward. The ball thumped off his forehead and Day magnificently arched his back, raised his right hand, and finger-tipped the ball over the bar, with perhaps the merest kiss of ball and bar. In added time, Sabin got the ball inside the Town half , which was nice for those perishing park rangers in the Osmond. And then the referee ended the scintillating, sizzling half.

Half time: Grimsby Town 0 Queens Park Rangers 0

Town were passionate, pacey, almost perfect. But still goalless. QPR were being pulverised, being forced to defend like rabid rabbits. Davison was a lonely figure, stalking his area like a forgotten pony, embarrassed to be paid for standing in a field. The game had the pace of a first division game, with Town the superior. It is impossible to single out individuals, for the team was all, the collective spirit, the cohesion, the performance was purrful. But still 0-0, and we know what happened last time we played them.

Stu's Half Time Toilet Talk

"Give me a nudge when QPR have a shot".
"You can’t get me on dirigibles".
"Town look like a team again"
"Mary Shelley. Wife or sister?".
"Where do you stand on the Groves debate? He claps, rather than waves"

The report continues in the Second Half.

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