No respite for Rangers as Stoke triumph

QPR 0 Stoke 2

Peter Crouch scored against his former club as QPR moved a step closer to having their relegation confirmed.

They dominated much of the game at Loftus Road but Crouch’s tap-in and Jon Walters’ 76th-minute penalty condemned them to a seventh home league defeat of a miserable season.

Rangers were punished for some shoddy defending three minutes before the interval.

Charlie Adam played the ball up to Cameron Jerome, who easily went past the sluggish Chris Samba and set up Crouch for a simple finish.

And when Clint Hill pulled back Crouch after Robert Huth’s header had hit the post, Walters tucked away the resulting spot-kick.

With his team all but down, boss Harry Redknapp rolled the dice by making five changes to the QPR starting line-up.

Rob Green replaced Julio Cesar in goal, while Shaun Derry, Tal Ben Haim, Adel Taarabt and Stephane Mbia replaced Jermaine Jenas, Nedum Onuoha, Esteban Granero and Ji-sung Park.

Green made a decent save, scrambling to his left to keep out a long-range effort from Crouch.

But Stoke’s Asmir Begovic was the busier keeper, pushing away a free-kick from Jose Bosingwa and denying Loic Remy on three occasions.

Taarabt was lively before going off with what looked like a shoulder injury early in the second half.

He twice fired narrowly over before teeing up Remy, whose first-time shot fizzed just wide.

Rangers struggled to create chances after the break, although they were denied an equaliser when Samba’s goal-bound shot was inadvertently blocked by Mbia.

QPR (4-4-1-1):Green; Bosingwa, Samba, Hill, Ben Haim; Townsend (Mackie 45), Derry, Mbia, Hoilett; Taarabt (Bothroyd 56); Remy.
Subs not used: Cesar, Diakite, Park, Granero, Onuoha.



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