Premier League: QPR 1 Newcastle 2
Newcastle moved closer to Premier League safety after Yoan Gouffran was gifted the winning goal in their 2-1 victory over QPR on Sunday.
The home side took the lead early in Sunday’s game as referee Lee Probert awarded them a controversial penalty for a foul on Junior Hoilett. Loic Remy made no mistake from the spot, but seven minutes later the visitors were level as Hatem Ben Arfa converted a penalty after Bosingwa was penalised for holding his shirt.
The deciding moment of the game came ten minutes before half-time when Bosingwa and Green conspired to gift Gouffran the easiest goal of his career, the Frenchman able to volley into an empty net from 20 yards.
Both sides made two changes from their previous games, the visitors brought in Mathieu Debuchy and Mike Williamson in place of Danny Simpson and Steven Taylor, the latter suffering with illness on the morning before the game. Bosingwa and Junior Hoilett returned for the hosts with Ji-Sung Park and Tel Ben Haim dropping out, the Israeli having sealed a loan move to Toronto earlier in the week.
Probert was the centre of attention in the game’s opening 20 minutes as he awarded both teams controversial penalties.
The home side were the first recipients of a spot kick as Debuchy was adjudged to have fouled Andros Townsend on the left-hand edge of the penalty area. Replays showed that the decision looked to be a generous one as the challenge happened just outside the box. With protests going on around him Remy remained the coolest man inside Loftus Road, and was eventually able to fire home his sixth league goal of the season.
The visitors rallied well from the disappointment and moments before their equaliser created an excellent chance for Cabaye but the Frenchman saw his shot blocked by Bosingwa, however a moment of madness from the full-back saw him tug at the shirt of Ben Arfa inside the area and another spot kick was awarded. The forward took the penalty himself and fired into the top corner giving Green no chance.
Newcastle could have gone ahead five minutes after equalising but an excellent header from Papiss Cisse was controversially ruled out for offside, and after Elliot made a good save from Hoilett to keep the scores level, QPR gifted a second goal to their visitors.
Green rolled the ball to Bosingwa, he played a short pass back to the him which Jonas Gutierrez forced the goalkeeper to clear quickly. The loose ball fell to Gouffran and he volleyed the ball into the empty net.
A double change by Harry Redknapp at half-time saw Bosingwa, who was being roundly booed by the home fans, and Stephane Mbia replaced by Fabio Da Silva and Shaun Derry but neither man was able to have an immediate impact on the game as the second-half struggled to gather momentum.
It was the pace of Hoilett that slowly began to have an impact for the hosts but crucial interceptions from Debuchy and Fabricio Coloccini denied two opportunities for Bobby Zamora the winger had created.
After seeing his team-mate miss two openings, the 22-year-old took it upon himself to threaten QPR’s goal. He received the ball on the edge of the penalty area, danced his way past a number of Newcastle tackles but dragged his shot just wide of Green’s right-hand post.
Newcastle came close to securing the win with 20 minutes to play but a crucial goal-line clearance from Derry denied Gutierrez his second goal of the season as he hooked his header clear after some more comical defending by QPR.
The visitors survived going down to 10-men in the closing minutes as Elliot made a terrible mistake that earned him a second yellow-card. The goalkeeper carried a harmless ball forward from the hosts out of his penalty area and was given his marching orders.