Idah goal denies QPR crucial win in relegation struggle

QPR 1-1 Norwich: Adam Idah keeps Canaries in touch with the play-offs and denies relegation-threatened R’s a crucial win after Lyndon Dykes’ opener

  • QPR remain just one point above the relegation zone in the Championship table
  • They led early on through Lyndon Dykes only for Adam Idah to level for Norwich
  • The Canaries are 10th but remain only two points shy of the play-off positions  

Gareth Ainsworth was denied what would have been only his second win as QPR boss after substitute Adam Idah’s goal earned playoff-chasing Norwich a 1-1 draw at Loftus Road.

While this was a good point against the Canaries, the fact remains that QPR have now won just two of their last 28 games.

‘Without a shadow of a doubt they [the players] feel they can stay up,’ said Ainsworth. 

‘We’re not even below the line, and that’s important, but there are going to be twists and turns. 

‘There’s going to be a lot of twists and turns this season but the boys know exactly where they’ve been sliding for quite a while now and it’s just about trying to address that and stop the rot.’

Lyndon Dykes celebrates scoring the opening goal for Queens Park Rangers against Norwich

But manager Gareth Ainsworth’s relegation-threatened R’s had to be content with a point 

Fellow strugglers Cardiff and Reading won at Watford and drew with Luton respectively.

‘We’d prefer those teams not to get results, but it’s in our hands and that’s what I’ve been saying to the boys,’ Ainsworth said.

‘I think it’s going to go to the wire without a doubt. 

‘There are five or six teams there and we’re going to try to get as many points as we can to get out of this.

‘We didn’t get beaten by a team that’s pushing for the play-offs, so I think it’s a good result. 

‘But we do need more points – I know that – and we’ve got to make sure we keep playing with the same attitude.’

The game started just how Ainsworth would have hoped and within 10 minutes the hosts were ahead.

Lyndon Dykes timed his run into the box perfectly and brought down Ilias Chair’s dinked cross brilliantly on his chest before finishing first time past Norwich goalkeeper Angus Gunn. 

Dykes breached the Norwich defence to bring down Ilias Chair’s cross and score the opener

They ended the half the better side too, with Kenneth Paal’s free kick striking the post.

MATCH FACTS

QPR (4-4-2): Dieng; Drewe, Dunne, Clarke-Salter (Dickie 60), Paal; Lowe, Iroegbunam (Amos 69), Field, Chair (Richards 90+1); Dykes, Martin (Adomah 82)

Subs not used: Dixon-Bonner; Willock, Archer

Manager: Gareth Ainsworth

Scorer: Dykes 9

Booked: Dykes, Dunne, Chair, Martin, Amos

Norwich (4-2-3-1): Gunn; Aarons (Tzolis 87), Omobamidele, Sorensen, Giannoulis (McCallum 34); Hayden (Nunez 84), Sara; Marquinhos (Idah 46), Gibbs (Byram 76), Hernandez (Pukki 75); Sargent

Sub not used: Krul

Manager: David Wagner

Scorer: Idah 46

Booked: Omobamidele, Hernandez

Referee: Keith Stroud

Attendance: 14,132

But Norwich emerged from the interval sharper and were quickly level through Idah. 

The striker tapped in from close range after Gabriel Sara’s shot was parried by Seny Dieng, to deny the hosts victory on a night that saw their relegation rivals Reading and Cardiff gain ground on them.

Norwich boss David Wagner admitted that their inability to retain possession proved costly at Loftus Road.

‘It’s disappointing because we only got the draw,’ Wagner said.

‘In the first half we didn’t start at our best, conceded a very avoidable goal where we have to stop the cross much more aggressively and with much more passion and desire.

‘Apart from the last five minutes of the first half I don’t think we were very creative or put much pressure on the opponents.

‘The second half was better. 

‘No complaints about the effort or how the players fought, but in possession we didn’t play to our best.

‘We were not able to calm the game. 

‘Sometimes it was more like a basketball game – up and down, up and down.

‘This is not how we like to play, how we’re used to playing, and unfortunately this was one of the reasons we only got a draw.

‘You can’t complain about the effort of the players. But we can, and we have to, play better football in possession.’

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