Ilias Chair and Sinclair Armstrong boost QPR survival hopes



Posted Sunday, January 21, 2024 by PA

Ilias Chair and Sinclair Armstrong boost QPR survival hopes

Goals from Ilias Chair and Sinclair Armstrong gave relegation-threatened QPR a vital 2-0 win over Millwall at Loftus Road.

It was Rangers’ first victory in eight Sky Bet Championship matches and lifted them up a place, to third from bottom.

And it means they will move level on points with Huddersfield, the team immediately above them in the table, if they beat the Terriers in another crucial game next weekend.

In a feisty London derby, both teams struggled to create clear-cut chances before Chair put Rangers ahead in the 27th minute with his third goal of the season.

Lyndon Dykes, usually a striker but currently operating in a withdrawn role, played a big part in the build-up.

Dykes controlled the ball nicely and laid it to the right to Chris Willock, who turned away from Joe Bryan and delivered a left-footed cross to the far post, where Chair bundled home from close range after getting in front of Millwall’s on-loan Arsenal youngster Brooke Norton-Cuffy.

QPR continued to threaten after the goal and Willock fired over – again after turning away from Bryan – before Dykes’ side-footed effort flashed narrowly wide.

Millwall’s first real sight of goal came a couple of minutes before half-time, when Billy Mitchell sent a first-time strike over the bar after being found by Zian Flemming’s cross from the left.

Rangers were back on the front foot after the interval, with Dykes heading wide from Willock’s cross and then testing keeper Matija Sarkic with a low shot which was well saved.

And the hosts appealed in vain for a penalty when Wes Harding blocked Dykes’ shot with his hands.

Rangers then had a let-off of their own when keeper Asmir Begovic allowed Mitchell’s shot to squirm through his legs and was rescued by Reggie Cannon’s clearance off the line.

Cannon took a heavy knock in the process and as he lay on the ground the defender appeared to be struck by a number of objects thrown from the away fans’ section of the ground.

That was the closest Millwall came to an equaliser – and there was no way back for them after Armstrong’s 85th-minute goal.

Chair teed up Jack Colback and, after Sarkic failed to hold the veteran midfielder’s left-footed shot, Armstrong was on hand to tuck away the loose ball.

Millwall, who recently won three matches in a row under new boss Joe Edwards, have now suffered back-to-back defeats.

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