Yoann Barbet’s close-range goal was enough to give QPR all three points against Blackburn Rovers on Saturday afternoon in the Sky Bet Championship.
The opening stages saw a couple of yellow cards generate the biggest talking points.
Charlie Austin ended up in the book after a clash with Lewis Travis after the latter fouled the forward before Rob Dickie and Jacob Davenport came together going for the ball, the Blackburn man this time getting a yellow in a decision that Tony Mowbray labelled ‘rubbish.’
The biggest chance of the first 20 minutes, meanwhile, fell the R’s’ way as Ilias Chair’s blocked effort from around the penalty spot could not be put away by Todd Kane, with the no.2 instead firing wide.
A warning shot for the visitors who responded minutes after with a great chance of their own. Adam Armstrong’s free-kick looked to be heading into the top corner but for a top save from Seny Dieng to palm over.
In the 34th minute, meanwhile, the most golden chance of the half fell Rovers’ way. Armstrong, who had a good game, was once again involved as he was played in behind Rob Dickie down the left.
He kept the QPR defender back as he rushed into the box and centred for Harvey Elliott who, with the goal at his mercy, conspired to fire over with his left-footed effort.
With neither side able to take advantage in the first-half of their respective good patches of play, the match was well poised to be decided potentially by the odd goal.
And, that said, odd the opening goal was as Yoann Barbet eventually turned home from close-range.
Ilias Chair’s free-kick from the left wasn’t dealt with around the six-yard box by the Rovers’ defence and it fell for Barbet who, with his back to goal, laid off for back-line partner Geoff Cameron.
The QPR skipper’s strike simply couldn’t get through the Rovers bodies in front of him but, as pinball ensued, the ball broke at Barbet’s feet – a chance he would not pass up.
Certainly, it was a scrappy goal but the Hoops wouldn’t have minded one bit, though Blackburn, with their attacking talent, were naturally going to still carry a threat.
Indeed, Dieng was soon required once more as he saved a well-struck Lewis Holtby volley before the follow-up from Adam Armstrong was bravely blocked by Rob Dickie.
Armstrong had been a thorn in the QPR side all game but would not get a goal, instead being subbed soon after his final effort – a swirling strike from range – was tipped over by the once again impressive Dieng.
And, despite Tony Mowbray bringing on the likes of Ben Brereton, Bradley Dack and Tyrhys Dolan, Rovers’ attack remained thwarted for the closing stages of the match.
A big win for QPR, then, with the table below them tightening up before kick-off whilst Rovers’ top six bid suffers a slight dent.