Sunday, 29 September 2013


Queens Park Rangers 2 Middlesborough 0

I was looking forward very much to this match thinking that this was a real opportunity to finally thump a team, being at home, having built up momentum with 1-0 wins and playing a fairly weak opponent. So, on the way to the ground I placed two bets. A fiver on QPR to thrash Middlesborough 4-0, and a fiver on Barton to score a goal at any time. Having spent the first few matches consistently backing SWP due to some strange thing in my head that was saying 'he will one day score, he will one day score', I figured I would pick Barton as it was about time he popped one in for the lads.

On the way to the ground I stopped off at the mini club shop on South Africa Road, and finally purchased a much coveted Dennis the Menace top. I'm actually loving the material, but after a quick change in the Springbok loos I realised as I waited for @annieqpr and @gemcricketmad that this new design doubles up as a tight fitting dress. As per several people's feedback, just stick on some leggings and knee high boots and you'll be ready to paint the town red (and black). Seriously, what is going on with the length of the shirts? Someone suggested that it may be something to do with my height but at about 5ft5, and @qprbennyboy also claiming has a dress I am not sure this is true. Perhaps it's QPR's way of helping us save a little money by giving two options in one. Though I'd rather have received a membership pack this year like I have done for several years with my Platinum Season ticket instead.

Anyway, at the pub Annie and Gem and I were excitedly discussing the team news. It would be the first time I would witness all our new signings starting together apart from Chevanton. We discussed the fact that there were plenty of midfielders and how it was another opportunity for Faurlin to show Harry he was any good. I'll be honest, we also discussed how good looking Kranjcar is. I blame Gem for this. Having the wonderful excuse of being a mother with two boys she was able to attend the open day a few weeks ago and take lots of photos of gorgeous football players with her sons in them. And according to her, not only is Niko good looking, but he's got a certain kind of charm and charisma which we agreed was an extremely positive thing.

Little did we know what we were actually about to witness on the pitch. Kranjcar injected that little bit of creativity that we needed which seemed to energise everyone else in to trying and completing some clever stuff. There was some good passing and heaps possession. Even if the BBC didn't show that great moment around 64 minutes it will be embedded in my mind as the time when QPR fans gasped in a strange sort of horror as we just couldn't believe we were seeing such moments of skill and team play- something we had not seen for such a long time within such positive circumstances. But my neighbour to my right said to me 'I'm not even sure he's left second gear yet' and he was still playing like a demon. And as I watched him amble nonchalantly off the pitch I did wonder whether he felt a little like you feel if you've stepped back a class in a course, or been demoted to a job you did years ago. It was all too easy. I imagined him blowing his imaginary pistol as he walked up and faced the tunnel cam. But that's what charisma is isn't it?

The much used, but often questioned google dictionary supports this:


  1. Compelling attractiveness or charm that can inspire devotion in others.
  2. A divinely conferred power or talent.

Needless to say, for Gem and I it's 'Cheerio Julio' and 'Hello Niko' for the foreseeable future. And as for the other players, well they all played their part. There were still some mistakes - Carroll was great in parts  but did make a few mistakes. Similar thoughts on Faurlin who perhaps has lost some confidence since coming back from injury and falling out favour. It is a team game however, and as a unit we worked well, backing each other up when required and forgiving little mistakes. We needed to play and win in this way so that when we get to Christmas when we play all the better teams in the league we have that confidence instilled in us. Falling in our favour is, perhaps, that we saw glimmers of a team 'charisma' at the 64 minute mark? Let us hope it is not the last time we see that. 

Yesterday, my Step Mum came to the match with my Dad as part of her birthday weekend treat. I am hoping that she comes more often as we seem to play well when she is around. I'd like to wish her a big Happy Birthday and a thank you for being there. If anyone can teach the lads a little about charisma it's her. And she'd probably look way cooler than me in that Dennis the Menace top and knee high boots. 

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