QPR 2, MANCHESTER CITY 3
They say titles are won when teams win despite a poor performance.
Manchester City certainly needed to dig deep after after they conceded the lead for the first time in the Barclays Premier League game at Loftus Road against Queens Park Rangers but preserved their unbeaten start as they overpowered their hosts in the second half.
City first-team coach David Platt admitted that City had not expected the attacking QPR tactics but was pleased that his side had managed to overcome them.
“That was tougher than we anticipated,” admitted Platt.
“Full credit to Neil Warnock (QPR manager) for the way he set his team out and the offensive nature of his tactics. We didn’t expect that.”
“The important thing is when we are not quite at it we can still win football matches and take three points.”
Warnock was proud of his players’ efforts against the league leaders but was quick to point out that a trio of mistakes had led to the City goals.
City were in danger of going in 1-0 down at the break after Jay Bothroyd scored a 28th minute deserved opener for QPR before Edin Dzeko levelled matters shortly before the break.
Anton Ferdinand had earlier prevented the talismanic striker from scoring but couldn’t stop him just before half time after James Milner provided a killer cross fro the right flank.
It would have been unfair on QPR had Sergio Aguero’s shot on the stroke of the interval gone in but the Argentinian’s long range effort struck the foot of the post with QPR ‘keeper Paddy Kenny statuesque.
City manager Roberto Mancini was surely planning a half- time rocket for his players after earlier chances by Jamie Mackie and Heidar Helguson while goalscorer Bothroyd hit the woodwork with a header that had beaten ‘keeper Joe Hart and could have put QPR 2-0 up before Dzeko’s equaliser.
Despite being hailed for scoring a goal every 50 minutes for City, Dzeko later admitted that QPR had provided City’s sternest away test so far this season. Despite his equaliser it was certain that Mancini would still be delivering a half time team talk full of fireworks.
It worked as City improved immediately after the break and Dzeko provided a pass from which David Silva put City into the lead in the 52nd minute with a delightful finish.
City were in the ascendancy but there was controversy after QPR levelled matters again in the 69th minute after Bothroyd’s goalbound header went in off Helguson’s back as his stood on the goal line.
There was little time to react to the disappointment, however, as Yaya Toure popped up for his third goal in two games and the crucial winner as he rose majestically to meet Aleksandar Kolarov’s pinpoint cross to head the winner past Kenny in the QPR goal.
There was still time for QPR to respond and Helguson hit the bar with his late effort as City clung on for victory.