It was another weekend of struggle for Nahki Wells, extending his goalless run to seven as Queens Park Rangers drew 2-2 with Charlton Athletic in the Championship.
Mark Warburton’s QPR couldn’t have started the month in better fashion – back-to-back wins and clean sheets looked to have their top-half prospects back on track and their defensive woes brought to an end, but a 5-3 defeat at then bottom-club Barnsley last weekend brought them back down to Earth with a thud.
Back in West London though and facing a Charlton side who haven’t won since mid-October, hopes were high for the home side going into this one.
Geoff Cameron gave QPR the lead after six-minutes and Charlton heads immediately dropped. The game looked QPR’s for the taking and they should’ve been two goals up in the first-half when Jordan Hugill knocked the ball back to Nahki Wells inside the six-yard box, who headed over from point blank range.
That wasn’t his worst miss of the evening though – just a few minutes after putting his header over the bar Wells was played in by Charlton’s Ben Purrington and with nobody but Dillon Phillips in goal to stop him, Wells still couldn’t find the net.
One on one with the goalkeeper…
All the time in the world…
— Second Tier Podcast (@TheSecondTier) December 21, 2019
It’s a miss that came back to haunt the Bermudan and one that he’ll be repaying in his head for the rest of the season. But what’s happened to him? Where’s the confident striker that scored seven in his first 11 games of the season for QPR?
Wells has always been a striker that thrives off confidence. His move to Burnley has never quite worked out but he’s found refuge at QPR in the past two seasons, where the love from the fans has revitalised his career.
Warburton looked to be bringing back the ‘Nahki Wells of old’ in the earlier parts of the season but the 29-year-old has now gone seven Championship games without a goal, and is slowly losing his spot in the starting line-up.
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The game against Charlton at the weekend marks the half-way point of the season and no player at QPR has played more games than Wells – he’s played in all but two Championship games this season, twice in the cup and six times for Bermuda travelling all across the world, leaving his games tally at 29 for Christmas.
Fatigue may well be playing a part of Wells’ downfall at the moment, but confidence is the thing that is evidently lacking in his game right now – Wells needs to go back to the striker that he was at the start of the season, play without fear and pressure and the goals come right back to him.