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19:16 17th September 2011

Always Chasing The Game

Wolves 0

Queens Park Rangers 3 (Barton 8, Faurlin 10, Campbell 86)

After a woeful start Wolves were always chasing the game against a newly promoted Queens Park Rangers team boosted in recent weeks by some big money signings.

Following a one sided opening half, Mick McCarthy's team were fortunate not to be more than two down but, despite an improved second-half showing, they conceded again just before the end on what was an unhappy afternoon for the home support.

With Steven Fletcher out injured, Stephen Ward moved up front to share striking duties with Kevin Doyle and George Elokobi came in at left-back. The other change saw Matt Jarvis returning for Stephen Hunt who was named as a substitute.

Wolves kicked-off attacking the South Bank end and they found themselves two down after just ten minutes following a nightmare start.

With just 70 seconds on the clock Wayne Hennessey pulled off a tremendous save to keep out a Shaun Derry header that was arrowing towards the top corner.

The visitors continued to pile the pressure on and they were rewarded in the eighth minute when Joey Barton hooked home a miscued Shaun Wright-Phillips cross.

Worse was to follow as Richard Stearman's header out of the area went only as far as Alejandro Faurlin who teed a volley up for himself before blasting the ball past Hennessey from 20-yards.

Karl Henry did his best to reduce the deficit with a first time drive from outside the box that clipped the bottom of the post after Elokobi's cross had been headed out.

Wright-Phillips beat the offside trap in the 17th minute but he chose to shoot early and Hennessey had little trouble in collecting.

Wolves won their first corner two minutes later. Jamie O'Hara took the kick and when the ball was headed back to him he returned it into a crowded six-yard box where Ward headed over at the far post.

Jay Bothroyd blasted a 30-yard free-kick straight into the midriff of Hennessey who was then, with the assistance of Christophe Berra, blocked Armand Traore's path to goal as he was about to shoot.

Elokobi threw himself in front of an Adel Taarabt effort with the ball bouncing out for a corner that was cleared by the overstretched home defence, then Barton curled a low shot narrowly wide of the far post.

A last ditch challenge by Stearman on Wright-Phillips meant that the England star couldn't get full power behind his shot enabling Hennessey to save.

Half-Time: Wolves 0 QPR 2

At the start of the new half Sam Vokes and Adlene Guedioura were sent on in place of Elokobi and Michael Kightly. Ward dropped back into defence.

Just seconds after the restart, Bothroyd was booked following an aerial challenge on Stearman who needed treatment before he could continue.

An O'Hara shot hit Derry and went behind for a corner that the midfielder took himself with Roger Johnson running in but heading over.

Luke Young was penalised for 'foot up' on Ward but O'Hara's free-kick came to nothing, then Hennessey managed to hold on to a fierce drive from Taarabt.

With the clock running down Hunt replaced Jarvis and for the visitors DJ Campbell and Tommy Smith went on for Bothroyd and Taarabt respectively.

Berra slipped as he prepared to clear the ball but he managed to recover before Wright-Phillips and Bothroyd could take advantage.

The woodwork came to Wolves' rescue on 77 minutes when Wright-Phillips' drive struck the post and bounced straight back to Hennessey.

After Johnson had fired a half clearance over the bar, Faurlin was yellow carded for kicking the ball away at a free-kick, and Guedioura a minute later for fouling the Argentinian midfielder.

In the 86th minute Campbell sealed matters when he swept the ball home from close range after Wright-Phillips and Traore had created the opening.

Paddy Kenny made a comfortable take from Guedioura as Wanderers looked for a consolation goal, and then the keeper made his only notable save of the afternoon when he turned aside a powerful long-range free-kick from O'Hara.

In the feisty few minutes of stoppage time, Vokes and Anton Ferdinand went into the book and there was an angry confrontation between Hunt and Barton.

Wolves: Hennessey, Stearman, Elokobi (Vokes 45), Henry, Berra, Johnson (capt), Kightly (Guedioura 45), O'Hara, Doyle, Ward, Jarvis (Hunt 73).

Unused subs: Hammill, Milijaś, De Vries, Foley.

Bookings: Guedioura (85 - foul), Vokes (90 - foul).

QPR: Kenny, Derry, Gabbidon (Hall 83), Taarabt (Smith 75), Bothroyd (Campbell 73), Faurlin, Traore, Barton (capt), Young, Wright-Phillips, Ferdinand.

Unused subs: Buzsaky, Connolly, Murphy, Puncheon.

Bookings: Bothroyd (46 - foul), Faurlin (84 - kicking ball away after conceding free-kick), Ferdinand (90 - foul).

Referee: A. Taylor.

Attendance: 24,189.

Huddersfield Town Academy Under 18s 2 Wolves 2 (Kempton, Ismail).

    Data provided by Press Association


    For the first 50 years of their existence, England played their home matches all around the country.