Birmingham City 0 QPR 2
Ravel Morrison breathed new life into QPR’s bid for automatic promotion, scoring twice to give them a resounding victory at St Andrews.
Morrison struck from a free-kick – his first goal since joining on loan from West Ham – and later steered the ball into the bottom corner after being teed up by Jermaine Jenas.
It gave Rangers their first win in six matches – and the club’s first win at Birmingham for 30 years.
With Joey Barton back after suspension and Morrison a constant threat through the middle, they caused City problems with their passing and movement.
But it was a set-piece which led to the opener, Morrison sweeping the ball home from 25 yards on the quarter-hour mark.
QPR continued to have the upper hand and Armand Traore, playing on the right, missed a great chance to double the lead when he sliced a volley wide after being found by Kevin Doyle’s cross.
And Birmingham had another lucky escape when Barton’s right-wing free-kick was headed against the bar by Clint Hill.
Keeper Rob Green did well when called upon, producing a fingertip save to deny Blues striker Nikola Zigic in the first half and gathering a shot from Emyr Huws early in the second.
Rangers were largely dominant though and thought they had made it 2-0 nine minutes after the break, but Jenas was offside when he netted after collecting Morrison’s pass.
However, there was no doubt about Morrison’s cool finish after the pair combined again on 73 minutes.
The result moved QPR to within six points of second-placed Burnley, who play Blackburn on Sunday.
But with top scorer Charlie Austin already sidelined they will be concerned about forward Doyle, who hobbled off in the closing minutes.
QPR (4-4-1-1): Green; Onuoha, Dunne, Hill, Assou-Ekotto; Traore, Jenas, Barton, Hoilett (O’Neil 70); Morrison (Carroll 86); Doyle (Keane 84).
Subs not used: Murphy, Hughes, Henry, Benayoun.