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Premier League

  • February 4, 2012
  • • 10:00 AM
  • • Loftus Road Stadium, London
  • Referee: M. Clattenburg
  • • Attendance: 17351
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QPR 1-2 Wolves: Jarvis and Doyle strikes ensure visitors punish Djibril Cisse red card to move out of bottom three

Wolves rally to punish Djibril Cisse's sending off and move out of the bottom three.

LONDON - Wolves fought their way to a first win in nine Premier League games, rallying in the second half to steal the points from QPR in an entertaining game at Loftus Road.

Bobby Zamora marked his debut for the home side with a fine finish after a quarter of an hour, rifling Shaun Wright-Phillips layoff past a despairing Wayne Hennessey. But the story will be that of Mick McCarthy's ambition in the second period. Goals from Matt Jarvis and the excellent Kevin Doyle snatched a vital three points for his side.

There were a number of new faces on show at Loftus Road. The home team gave home debuts to Taye Taiwo, Nedum Onuoha, Djibril Cisse and Zamora while Mick McCarthy named Sebastian Bassong in the heart of the defense.

QPR began confidently in possession and pressed Wolves deep in their own half. As possession was relinquished by the Wolves midfield, Adel Taarabt – recalled following his return from the African Nations – played a neat one-two on the edge of the box with Zamora but his right footed shot flew just wide of the Wolves goal.

But Wolves were not here to lie down and soon carved their first chance as Steven Fletcher surged from the right flank into the center before firing his left shot narrowly wide of Paddy Kenny's goal.

However, just as Wolves began to play their way into the encounter, QPR carved out something special. Cisse collected the ball on the left side of the box and clipped a nicely weighted ball over the Wolves defense for the onrushing Wright-Phillips.

The diminutive winger instinctively flicked the ball back inside to the onrushing Zamora, who showed no remorse, slamming the ball past Hennessey for the opener.

Wolves reacted well and came close a couple of times, most notably as Steven Fletcher's free kick sailed just wide. The downside was seeing Emmanuel Frimpong limp off with an injury following a clash with Joey Barton.

Cisse was at the center of the good and bad for QPR – initially bursting from his own half and launching a counterattack that was well snuffed out by Sebastian Bassong.

Minutes later, he made headlines for the wrong reasons reacting petulantly to a bad tackle from Roger Johnson.

The French striker, making his home debut, leaped to his feet and foolishly raised his hands to Johnson. He left referee Mark Clattenburg no choice but to brandish the red card and put a dampener on a very encouraging opening half hour from the hosts.

The home fans were incensed by the decision of Clattenburg and he was certainly under pressure from this point, especially given the aggressive nature of some of the Wolves challenges.

The visitors naturally had more possession from that point on but went in at halftime trailing.

Mick McCarthy reacted positively at halftime, introducing a third striker in the form of Kevin Doyle for Richard Stearman and it paid immediate dividends.

Doyle collected the ball in the wide right position and sent a teasing cross into the box. The ball evaded the QPR defense and the onrushing Wolves attackers, but not Matt Jarvis at the back post.

Jarvis controlled well and shimmied onto his right foot under the close attention of Luke Young. The winger had just enough room to curl his shot beyond Young and past the sprawling Kenny to send the away supporters behind the goal into raptures.

This was just the tonic for McCarthy's outfit and the players raised their game considerably.

The remnants of a ill-construed corner routine led to Kevin Foley finding space to knock a first time ball to the back post. Fletcher kept onside and timed his leap perfectly and it was only the crossbar that saved QPR from shipping two goals in as many minutes.

The Wolves team that emerged for the second half, was in such stark contrast to that of the opening 45 minutes, that you wonder how they have failed to win a competitive game since early December.

Mark Hughes' home team seemed powerless to stop the onslaught and it was only the presence of Anton Ferdinand that prevented Fletcher getting his goal, as he hacked the Scot's goal bound prod off the line.

The surge in pressure culminated in Doyle's 20-yard drive that required Paddy Kenny to beat to safety.

QPR eventually settled and had a chance of its own through a Taarabt free kick. Hennessey offered the Moroccan midfielder a wide target and although he cleared the wall, it drifted just wide and to safety.

The home side began to find a foothold in the match but was lacking creative ideas. Young, always keen to overlap and support Wright-Phillips, was withdrawn following a hamstring strain and Wolves pounced.

Jamie O'Hara drove toward the QPR penalty area and fired a hip-height ball into Doyle. The pass took a nick off the substitute Ebanks-Blake but Doyle did well to control and turn onto his left. From 10 yards out, the Irishman struck his shot low across Kenny to give the away side a fully deserved lead.

A win on the road for McCarthy is as rare as they come but will be cherished as Wolves move onto level points with their hosts and ignite hopes of a stirring fight against relegation.

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