By Ian Waterhouse
Queens Park Rangers 3 – 0 Leeds United
Hope and optimism filled the away end in West London as Queens Park Rangers and Leeds United finally got their Championship campaigns under way at a bright and sunny Loftus Road. However, things did not go to plan for Leeds as Garry Monk’s first game in charge of the whites ended in a rather dismal 3-0 defeat to ex Leeds hero Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink’s QPR.
Starting Line-ups: –
Leeds United – Green, Berardi (Coyle 22), Bartley, Bamba, Taylor, Vieira, Diagouraga, Dallas, Grimes (Antonsson 61), Roofe (Sacko 75), Wood.
QPR – Smithies, Onuoha, Hall, Caulker, Bidwell, Henry, Luongo, Gladwin (Cousins 56), Chery (Perch 88), Shodipo (El Khayati 68), Polter.
(Impatient Leeds Owner Massimo Cellino) photo credit Yorkpress.
How The Action Unfolded
QPR were fresh out of the box and it did not take long for the Hoops to celebrate their first goal of the 2016/17 season. Rob Green failed to deal with an early corner from the home side and the ball fell to the feet of former Manchester City defender Nedum Onuoho who managed to poke it home in a crowded box from just a yard out.
Things started to go from bad too worse for Leeds as they were only spared going into the interval two down thanks to QPR’s Sebastian Polter’s low left foot shot finding the wood work instead of the back of the net.
However, it was not long before Leeds abject play was punished as an inexperienced foul in the box from 18-year-old Ronaldo Vieira on QPR’s Jordan Cousin’s gave the Londoners the chance to double their lead from the penalty spot.
Tjaronn Chery duly obliged and looked to have effectively killed the game off slotting the ball past Green in the 73rd minute.
Second half substitute, Swedish forward Antonsson came on in the 61st minute for Leeds to replace the booked Grimes and he had Leeds’s best chance to get back in the game. Put through one on one with QPR’s Alex Smithies, Antonsson failed to hit the target and ended Leeds’s chances of getting back into the game.
Leeds were fairly anonymous and new signing, Kemar Roofe (from Oxford United), was kept largely quiet throughout the game before being replaced by another new signing, Sacko, in the 75th minute.
Just to compound the misery, QPR’s best player Sebastian Polter added his second and QPR’s third of the game as he volleyed home from a tight angle in the 93rd minute.
As the full time whistle blew there was an air of relief that was over but Leeds boss Garry Monk remained defiant saying
“It’s a process and I said when I walked in that it’s not going to happen overnight. I trust all my players and trust they’re good enough and will improve” – Source BBC
Garry Monk’s baptism into the halls of Leeds United Management is well and truly underway. It may be very early days but there is no denying Leeds were poor. Things will need to improve and quickly if he is to keep Massimo Cellino’s famous impatience at bay.
Fleetwood Town up next in the League Cup. Surely things can only get better?