QPR fold after Campbell’s perfect start

Luton 3 QPR 1

Having waited until he was 29 to play for QPR, DJ Campbell waited only 29 seconds for a goal on his debut.

But that was as good as it got for Rangers, whose second-half substitutes were humbled by Conference side Luton at Kenilworth Road.

Campbell, who grew up a stone’s throw from Loftus Road, is determined to make the most of his second chance at the club that rejected him as a youngster.

He certainly made the most of the mix-up in the Luton defence that allowed him to fire home with the outside of his right foot.

Rangers might have won their final pre-season friendly comfortably had Tommy Smith not wasted an opportunity to put them further ahead when he headed Alejandro Faurlin’s left-wing cross wide of the target.

That miss proved to be a turning point, although few could have predicted that Luton would stage such an emphatic fightback.

Campbell was replaced at half-time – one of nine QPR changes at the break – and Rangers’ fringe players did their first-team prospects no good whatsoever by allowing their non-League opponents back into the game.

Luton were on top for much of the second period and were rewarded when Matthew Barnes-Homer headed the equaliser past Radek Cerny.

The Hatters then went close when Akos Buzsaky was dispossessed in midfield and the ball ran to James Dance, whose shot smashed against the bar.

But the next Rangers howler did not go unpunished. Striker Amari Morgan-Smith chased Bradley Orr’s backpass and embarrassed Cerny by blocking the Czech’s clearance, with the ball ricocheting into the net.

Worse followed for Rangers in the dying minutes. Dance found space on the right and pulled the ball back for Adam Watkins to net Luton’s third.