Queens Park Rangers 0 Chelsea 0
It's been a busy weekend for me. Apart from having some good friends over from Norway to visit, I had the Pride 10k run in Victoria Park to get over and done with yesterday prior to hopping it over to White City to watch my beloved QPR. As the weekend winds down and a business trip beckons tomorrow I am inclined to feel a little of the Sunday blues as my body aches from yesterday's exertions.
It wasn't easy running the 10k. I'm not as fit as I'd like to be and it's a challenge. It's also hard to run your own race, and not get upset about the crowds of people lapping you from the moment you reach 2k (yes someone finished it in 32 minutes!). But you aren't racing other people, you are only running for yourself. Not only that, but the Pride 10k is a lovely race in support of the gay community and there is more meaning to it for me because of that. We're very lucky in this country, and unless you've travelled or lived abroad you don't realise that what we have here is unique. If you want to run a 10k, 5k, half marathon, marathon, ultra-marathon...nutcase marathon, you name it...we've got it. If you want to try a triathlon we've got the super sprint, sprint, Olympic and iron man. Or maybe you aren't interested in the standard sporting events - how about getting yourself dirty in something like the Mud Runner Adventure Race Series? My point is, at any time in the year you will find a sporting challenge that you, or anyone else can enter. Something that is open to all abilities and something to suit all tastes. And yes, it's tough if you know you aren't going to be the fastest or the best, and perhaps you never have been at any point in your life. But people tend to be pretty supportive in this country. It's in our culture to be so. And trust me, it's not always the case elsewhere. I am half Filipino, and I know for a fact that in general people are only interested in cheering on the winners, not the losers. But here..I think we appreciate it when someone gives it a real bash. To use a phrase my step mum uses, it's called 'showing up'.
As usual, yesterday's match against Chelsea received a biased review by Match of the Day pundits. All we heard about was the 'non-handshake/handshake' which no one cares about anymore, and two potential Chelsea penalty claims. Looking at the match stats, QPR just about edged it as the better team - 83% completed passes vs. 77% for Chelsea, 52% possession, equal attempts on goal etc etc etc...Why did MOTD decide not to talk about these important pieces of information? No wonder Mark Hughes is p***** off in interviews - because they aren't asking about how we play.
Then again, are we surprised? As fans, we see the the progress the team has made, and most of us are impressed. But it hasn't always been the case that we've played well and maybe it's going to take a whole lot of time for people to respect us again as a team and for the way that we play football. We are looking good..again Granero stands out for me as a quality player, and Faurlin continues to be class act. But we're one game in to playing good football this season, and we need to see this consistently for people to start to notice. But QPR 'showed up' yesterday and the glimmers of good football I saw at the Wallsall game was a little burning fire yesterday.
I was late to the game actually...I took too long having a post-run pint, and ended up running achingly down South Africa Road. As I ran/walked down I could hear the amazing noise from the QPR fans giving Loftus Road that incredible electric atmosphere that is amplified all the more when we play Chelsea. Hearing the cheers and boos it was so hard to tell what was going on because - as I soon learnt when I sat down - we were just cheering and booing everything we could supporting the team at absolutely every opportunity: from every block, tackle, to every great pass and attempted shot on goal. As fans, we showed up because our team showed up.
I am not saying that we're fine with QPR showing up and not winning. At the end of the day, these guys are paid to win and I'm paid to manage advertising campaigns. But if you aren't even going to show up you haven't got a chance in hell of winning.
So let's see a big win next week at White Hart Lane!