QPR 2-1 Norwich: Holloway “emotional” on return to Loftus Road dugout as Rs edge past Canaries
- Credit: EMPICS Sport
Ian Holloway admitted his emotions nearly got the better of him on his return to management, as he began his second reign as QPR boss with a hard-fought victory over Norwich City.
Holloway, who previously managed the Rangers for a five-year spell from 2001-2006, says he was overcome with emotion as he headed out to the pitch before the match with first-team coach Marc Bircham, as the duo received a rapturous reception from the Rs faithful.
He said: “To get that welcome, I felt emotional. What joy.
“When I heard the ‘Hoops’ song being played, I had to steady myself in the tunnel. It’s my favourite song and I didn’t want to go out there with a tear in my eye.
“The game was so bizarre; I’ve never seen anything like that so early. To then miss the penalty – talk about ups and downs!
“After that I was delighted. Tjaronn Chery’s pass for the second goal was as good as I’ve seen.”
Holloway’s second spell in charge of the Rs started in dramatic circumstances, with Norwich’s Martin Olsson sent off for a handball on the line and Chery missing the resulting penalty – all in the first two minutes.
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The Dutchman then had a hand in both Rangers goals, with Conor Washington netting from one of his corner’s before Sebastian Polter made it 2-0 after being put through by Chery’s glorious pass.
Despite seeing his side record all three points, Holloway says there is plenty of work for him to oversee with the current squad but is relishing the challenge.
He added: “We got a lot of things wrong, but we did a lot of good things, too. I could see there was a lack of organisation and self belief.
“We went deeper and deeper which played into their hands.
“We stopped using the extra man when they got a goal back and there was no pressure. Things must have been happening here that affected everybody.
“Our home form hasn’t been good. I want our fans to be entertained when they come here.
“But we got the win at the end of the day and I’m very proud of the way my lads ran around and showed they cared about the badge. You can’t buy character, you have to have some of it around the place and then build on it.
“There’s so much I can show them now off the back of this. I’ve learnt a lot in my managerial career - there are seven or eight ways I can play the game.
“In the last week I’ve done about four months worth of work to what I was doing before, after all I was in semi-retirement for 18 months.
“I need to have a lie down now - but what a fantastic day for the football club. At the moment I feel like I’m on one of those rides at Disney.”