Cole returns for the Rs
QPR Reserves ran out comfortable 6-0 winners this afternoon against Lewes Reserves at Loftus Road. Angelo Balanta did his chances of a 1st-team recall no harm by scoring two and creating another, for team mate Romone Rose. And even Reserve Team Manager, Gareth Ainsworth, managed to get on the score sheet. Youngster Chris Flood also managed to score two in a game which saw 1st-team manager, Ian Dowie, watching from the stands.
But the real talking point must be the absence of Lee Camp with Jake Cole, recently returned from his loan spell at Oxford United due to injury, restored between the sticks. (Reece Crowther was the substitute.)
Cole lined up behind a back-four which included Ainsworth in his now familiar role as right-back. Adam Bolder, Samuel Di Carmine, Angelo Balanta and Damiano Tommasi also lined up in a strong team which included youngsters Romone Rose, Femi Ilesanmi, Joe Oastler, Chris Arthur and Ed Harris.
The Rs started well and could`ve taken an early lead through Rose, but he dragged his shot wide. Balanta and Harris both went close shortly after but the constant Rs pressure paid off on the half-hour mark, when Balanta let fly an unstoppable shot into the roof of the net. However, despite all our pressure after the goal, we didn`t manage to score again until first-half injury time, when Rose tapped the ball into an empty net following good work from first Chris Flood and then Balanta.
Ainsworth started the scoring spree in the second half which was followed soon after by Balanta`s better of his two goals. Neat work between Bolder and Balanta resulted in the latter scoring. First he received the ball in the 6-yard box; next he dragged the ball away from the Lewes defender; then he pivoted round towards the goal and placed the ball in the roof of the net (again!)
Tommasi even had a chance to score before Flood scored his first and Ranger`s fifth of the afternoon, following more good work from Adam Bolder. Flood then let fly on the edge of the box to score his second and our sixth.
The good news was the manner and display in beating Lewes so comprehensively. The bad news was the injury to Samuel Di Carmine, who had to leave the pitch very early on in the game. We wait to see the outcome of that. However, Chris Flood proved equal to the task, which is very pleasing! Danny Maguire also made an appearance as substitute for Romone Rose.
But what about Lee Camp? Last week it was said that he really made very little effort in the Reserve`s game against Southampton which, despite having all the play, we contrived to lose 3-2. Now, we read that Paladini has said he can leave us if he wants to - and he is now being linked to Swansea. Does his absence today suggest that there is substance to this rumour? Have we seen the last of a young man who has the potential, in this author`s opinion, to go on to great things - for Club and for Country?
Let us know your thoughts!