Queens Park Rangers: Ecstasy Turns into Agony Against Wigan at Loftus Road

Joe TanseyFeatured ColumnistApril 7, 2013

Going into Sunday's match at Loftus Road against Wigan Athletic, Harry Redknapp's Queens Park Rangers club needed to earn a full three points out of a relegation six-pointer at home. 

With 84 minutes of goalless play in the books and an awful red card by Bobby Zamora, who fully deserved his sending off in the 21st minute for raising his boot toward the head of Jordi Gomez on a contested ball, somewhat forgotten, Loftus Road was sent into an uproar. 

QPR played an admirable match with Zamora off of the pitch, and then they were finally rewarded with a brilliant counterattack led by Stephane Mbia and Loic Remy.

Mbia sprinted down the middle of the pitch to feed his former Marseille teammate, Remy, who then coolly scored with the side of his right foot to put the R's up by a goal with just six minutes left in the match. 

Then, just like most of the events that have caused QPR to be in 19th place this season, the survival hopes of the club went up in flames. 

With only a minute left until a full three points was to be earned, a comedy of errors sent everyone associated with QPR into a sense of shock and disbelief.

Mbia went from hero to goat when he took down Shaun Maloney just outside of the penalty area. 

Loftus Road was then silenced by Maloney as he powered the free kick into the back of the net to crush the remaining survival hopes of QPR, securing the 1-1 tie for Wigan.

While Mbia did take down Maloney, it was not him who took the strong criticism from supporters after referee Phil Dowd blew the final whistle. The man who took all the criticism was Adel Taarabt. 

Taarabt was lined up in the QPR wall in front of keeper Julio Cesar and instead of manning up and jumping up to deflect the free kick away, he cowardly jumped and ducked as Maloney's free kick sailed right over his head. 

Zamora's red card, Mbia's dubious tackle and Taarabt's boneheaded error are three mistakes that sum up the season of QPR in a nutshell. If any of these mistakes did not happen, we could be talking about a historic relegation race between the R's and four other clubs.

Instead, a spot in the 24-club Championship seems to QPR's next season, and the third club that will join the R's and Reading next season in the second flight is all that remains to be determined in the relegation race. 


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