Barnsley 0 QPR 1
By Ben Kosky MIKELE Leigertwood doesn t really do tap-ins – and the midfielder s 20-yard crackerjack on Saturday certainly deserved to win a better game than this one. Leigertwood collected the ball from Hogan Ephraim, skipped infield and unleashed a left
By Ben Kosky
MIKELE Leigertwood doesn't really do tap-ins - and the midfielder's 20-yard crackerjack on Saturday certainly deserved to win a better game than this one.
Leigertwood collected the ball from Hogan Ephraim, skipped infield and unleashed a left-foot rocket that beat Luke Steele and clattered off the crossbar into the net.
That classy strike briefly lit up a stagnant contest with a strong end of season odour about it, although Rangers looked the better side and merited the win that gives them their only 'double' of the season.
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With that said, the best chances fell to out-of-form Barnsley, with Iain Hume twice failing to beat Radek Cerny after the Rs' offside trap had broken down.
"I thought it was a goal fitting to win a game, the way he took it," said manager Neil Warnock. "They're Mikele's goals - when you're not expecting them, he comes out with something like that.
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"The attitude was good - we were a bit sloppy in the first half and could have given them a couple of goals, but we defended better second half as a unit and I reckon we could have put it to bed."
Hume squandered a good opportunity after just two minutes, allowing Cerny to push his effort onto the post, but Alejandro Faurlin and Akos Buzsaky soon seized control as Rangers dominated the centre of the park.
Antonio German should have put them ahead midway through the first half, but made a hash of his finish from six yards out after a storming run by Dusko Tosic had created the opening.
Leigertwood made amends five minutes later, but the lead still seemed a precarious one as Cerny denied Hume again and Peter Ramage blocked Jon Macken's effort on the line after a careless clearance from the keeper.
Rangers looked comfortable after the interval, though, as Ramage and Kaspars Gorkss soaked up whatever Barnsley could throw at them - the sum total of which was very little.
Routine stops for Cerny from Hugo Colace and Jacob Butterfield, along with a highly optimistic penalty appeal when Hume tangled with Gorkss and went crashing to earth, were as close as the Tykes came to scoring.
Not that Rangers - after Buzsaky had put the ball into the net early in the second half, only to be booked for handling Tosic's cross - looked likely to add to their tally, either. They didn't need to.