QPR denied late victory in Hasselbaink’s first match



QPR 0 Burnley 0

Scott Arfield denied Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink a dramatic victory in the Dutchman’s first match in charge of QPR.

It was Rangers’ sixth clean sheet in nine games but they were unable to find a way past the visitors’ equally resolute defence.

They went mightily close to doing so in the final seconds, though, when Arfield cleared Grant Hall’s header off the line.

Rangers again started without a recognised striker until top scorer Charlie Austin, who has been nursing a calf problem, came off the bench in the second half.

By that stage they had faded after a lively first half during which James Perch and Matt Phillips went closest to scoring for them.

Perch’s deflected shot bounced narrowly wide and Burnley keeper Tom Heaton saved with his legs to deny Phillips.

Heaton also gathered Leroy Fer’s header from Alejandro Faurlin’s left-wing corner

At the other end, Joey Barton, playing against his former club for the first time since leaving QPR during the summer, had a free-kick saved by Rob Green.

R’s keeper Green also held a long-range effort from Sam Vokes and, a couple of minutes before half-time, just about made it to a back-header from Hall before Clarets striker Andre Gray.

And Green was called into action again early in the second half, saving at the feet of first Gray and then Arfield during a goalmouth scramble.

With his team tiring and Burnley enjoying their best spell of the match, Hasselbaink introduced Austin on the hour mark.

Former Burnley forward Austin scored against Leeds with his first touch after coming on as a substitute in Rangers’ previous home match, but there was no repeat this time.

He was soon in the thick of the action, however, collecting the ball after great work on the left by Phillips and teeing up Karl Henry, whose weak shot was easily saved by Heaton.

Hasselbaink then sent on Jay Emmanuel-Thomas but Rangers continued to struggle to create chances, while Burnley finished the game strongly.

Vokes headed over after climbing above Nedum Onuoha to meet Barton’s cross and David Jones fired over Green’s bar late on.

Rangers, who host Championship leaders Brighton on Tuesday, survived another late scare when the dangerous Vokes threatened again in the final minute.

Vokes was just unable to connect with Ben Mee’s left-wing delivery, with Onuoha doing just enough to prevent him getting a firm header to the cross, before Hall almost won it.

QPR: Green, Perch, Onuoha, Hall, Konchesky, Henry (Emmanuel-Thomas 74), Sandro, Faurlin, Hoilett (Austin 60), Fer, Phillips.
Subs not used: Smithies, Chery, Luongo, Angella, Tozser.