Hoops boost survival hopes
Published 09/03/2013 | 17:21
January acquisitions Andros Townsend and Jermaine Jenas both struck exquisite half-volleys as QPR's survival hopes received a boost with a 3-1 win against Sunderland.
There had been fears last weekend's 2-1 win at Southampton could prove to be a flash in the pan, especially when Steven Fletcher put Sunderland ahead after 20 minutes.
However, the hosts rallied and levelled the score on the half-hour mark through Loic Remy before Townsend and Jenas sealed the win in the second half.
The home side started strongly and after Park Ji-sung charged down a Sebastian Larsson strike, QPR pushed forward and were unfortunate to see Junior Hoilett strike wide in the fourth minute. Hoilett wriggled free down the left and snuck past makeshift right-back Craig Gardner, before firing across the face of goal.
Townsend on the opposite flank was another full of life in the early stages and saw a strike miss the target, while Bobby Zamora saw penalty claims for a push by John O'Shea waved away.
It was the visitors, though, that broke the deadlock when Adam Johnson picked up a Stephane Sessegnon cross at the back post. The former Manchester City winger sent in a fierce cross-shot, which Fletcher turned home with ease from close range.
The Hoops were level when Townsend's long-range strike fortuitously deflected off O'Shea into the path of Remy, who swept home with ease from close range to the delighted of the home support.
Barely a minute into second half, Samba had to be alert to deny Danny Graham before Johnson put a fizzing drive narrowly wide but Townsend fired QPR ahead in stunning fashion.
Sunderland cleared a Jose Bosingwa cross out of the box, only for Townsend to control the ball on his chest before firing home a superb 25-yard half volley as Loftus Road erupted.
Bosingwa curled a free-kick wide of near post as the hosts edged a tense final 15 minutes, which came to life once again when Jenas, only on 10 minutes earlier, struck home in style.