• Sun. Feb 28th, 2021

United Hours

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QPR comeback dents rivals Brentford's hopes

Charlie Austin scored the winner as QPR came from behind to beat Brentford 2-1 in the west London derby.

Ivan Toney’s 24th league goal of the season put the Bees ahead on the half-hour mark on Wednesday night.

But on-loan West Brom duo Austin and Sam Field turned the game on its head by scoring in the space of four second-half minutes.

It condemned Brentford to a second successive loss – three days after a defeat at home to Barnsley ended a 21-match unbeaten run in the Sky Bet Championship.

Charlie Austin (R) scored the winner for QPR

Field, on as a substitute for his R’s debut, thumped in a left-footed volley from 10 yards out after Brentford failed to clear Todd Kane’s 72nd-minute cross from the right.

Kane was also involved in the build-up to the second Rangers goal.

His cross-field ball was pounced on by Lee Wallace, who pulled back for Austin to fire home via a deflection

Brentford had been the better side and went ahead when Mattias Jensen whipped in a free-kick from the left and Toney’s slight touch at the far post nudged the ball beyond keeper Seny Dieng and into the far corner of the net.

The visitors continued to dominate after taking the lead, with Toney’s deflected free-kick flashing just over and Dieng pushing away Jensen’s long-range strike.

Visiting keeper David Raya was finally called into action late in the first half when he saved with his legs to keep out former Brentford defender Yoann Barbet’s volley.

QPR improved after the interval and went close to equalising when on-loan Fulham midfielder Stefan Johansen curled a free-kick narrowly over.

But Brentford looked fairly comfortable before being emphatically punished for two shoddy defensive lapses.

And they ran out of ideas in the attacking third in the final stages, with Toney’s header over from Jensen’s corner the closest they came to an equaliser.

Thomas Frank’s side remain second in the table but his team’s recent wobble will no doubt be of concern to the Dane.

On the other hand, Rangers’ former Brentford boss Mark Warburton has seen his team recover well from a recent slump.

Austin’s return to his former club has had the desired effect and Rangers have lost just one of their past eight matches – a run which has included five wins.

What the managers said…

QPR’s Mark Warburton: “Thomas and Charlie will shake hands and move on. It’s a local derby with emotions running high and Charlie’s just scored the winner late in the game – it’s never going to be nicey-nicey, that’s for sure. Someone might not agree with the way he conducted himself, but Charlie’s a top-class pro and it means a lot – it means a lot to Charlie, to the team and our supporters.

“I’m delighted for Charlie and for the team. It’s a really important three points for us and obviously we know what it means to the supporters. In the first half an hour we showed far too much respect to Brentford and they were the better team. They’re a good team if you give them time and space. We had to respond and be better in the second half, which we certainly were. The players deserve so much credit for that quality of response.”

Brentford’s Thomas Frank: “The important message to get out is that if anyone had told us at the beginning of the season that we’d be in this position, with 57 points, I think we would have said ‘Yes, we’ll take that’. I’m aware we can lose the next one every single time because this league is so even.

“I showed only one clip to the players after the Barnsley game, which we lost to a team that was just a tiny bit better than us. The clip I showed was in the 94th minute when we had eight players sprinting back from a corner. If you have that mentality, work-rate and togetherness you will be absolutely fine.”

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