Championship
QPRQueens Park Rangers2WatfordWatford1

Queens Park Rangers 2-1 Watford

Joey Barton

Top scorer Charlie Austin's late winner helped Queens Park Rangers beat Watford to secure their place in the Championship play-offs.

Sweden striker Mathias Ranegie swept in from close range to put the visitors ahead early in the second half.

Fourth-placed Rangers levelled through Joey Barton's precise free-kick from the edge of the Watford penalty box.

And the Hoops guaranteed a top-six finish when Austin curled in his 16th goal of the season.

Watford sit 12th in the table, six points adrift of sixth-placed Brighton with a game in hand and three matches left.

The Hornets were dominant from the start and Rangers goalkeeper Rob Green pulled off saves to deny Troy Deeney and Lewis McGugan.

Green pushed away Deeney's close-range effort after the interval but was finally beaten when Deeney knocked down Joel Ekstrand's cross and Ranegie span away from Richard Dunne and finished.

The hosts began to threaten and McGugan cleared a header from Austin before goalkeeper Manuel Almunia saved from Austin's drive.

Barton's free-kick pulled the home side level and Austin guided a shot past Almunia from Bobby Zamora's pass to secure the victory.

QPR assistant manager Kevin Bond: "I was impressed with Watford. They started both halves better than we did but we eventually got hold of the ball.

"It was great for Charlie to get back on the scoresheet. We've missed his goals and missed his presence.

"Apart from what he does on the field, psychologically when the teamsheet goes up and he's not been on it, we know he has won us games.

"We now need everybody fit and in good form for the play-offs. We need to get the momentum."

Watford boss Giuseppe Sannino: "It was a very important game for us, almost a must-win game, and we were knocked down when we tried to score from a corner.

"They counter-attacked very well and we conceded in a game in which I think we produced the best performance under my regime.

"Maybe I became too British. I like your culture and will to win until the last second of the game and if I'd kept three defenders back at that corner we might not have conceded the goal.

"But I don't have regrets, because that's the way I like to be and I'm pleased with my lads because we tried to score."

Line-ups

QPR

  • 1Green
  • 2SimpsonSubstituted forHoilettat 72'minutes
  • 6Hill
  • 10Carroll
  • 15Onuoha
  • 5Dunne
  • 14DoyleSubstituted forZamoraat 72'minutes
  • 17Barton
  • 9AustinBooked at 86minsSubstituted forHenryat 90+1'minutes
  • 4Morrison
  • 3Traore

Substitutes

  • 12Keane
  • 13Yun
  • 18Hughes
  • 20Henry
  • 23Hoilett
  • 25Zamora
  • 26Murphy

Watford

  • 1Almunia
  • 15RieraBooked at 55mins
  • 18Pudil
  • 4Angella
  • 27Cassetti
  • 6Ekstrand
  • 22AbdiBooked at 60mins
  • 28Tözsér
  • 13RanegieBooked at 58mins
  • 9Deeney
  • 10McGuganSubstituted forBattocchioat 63'minutes

Substitutes

  • 7Battocchio
  • 8Merkel
  • 12Doyley
  • 16Murray
  • 19Faraoni
  • 30Bond
  • 31Hoban
Referee:
James Linington
Attendance:
16,951

Match Stats

Home TeamQPRAway TeamWatford
Possession
Home49%
Away51%
Shots
Home17
Away14
Shots on Target
Home8
Away5
Corners
Home8
Away11
Fouls
Home8
Away19

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Queens Park Rangers 2, Watford 1.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Queens Park Rangers 2, Watford 1.

  3. Post update

    Joey Barton (Queens Park Rangers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  4. Post update

    Foul by Daniel Tözsér (Watford).

  5. Substitution

    Substitution, Queens Park Rangers. Karl Henry replaces Charlie Austin because of an injury.

  6. Goal!

    Goal! Queens Park Rangers 2, Watford 1. Charlie Austin (Queens Park Rangers) right footed shot from outside the box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Bobby Zamora following a fast break.

  7. Post update

    Corner, Watford. Conceded by Richard Dunne.

  8. Post update

    Corner, Watford. Conceded by Tom Carroll.

  9. Post update

    Junior Hoilett (Queens Park Rangers) wins a free kick on the right wing.

  10. Post update

    Foul by Joel Ekstrand (Watford).

  11. Booking

    Charlie Austin (Queens Park Rangers) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

  12. Post update

    Foul by Charlie Austin (Queens Park Rangers).

  13. Post update

    Albert Riera (Watford) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  14. Post update

    Foul by Junior Hoilett (Queens Park Rangers).

  15. Post update

    Daniel Pudil (Watford) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  16. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Ravel Morrison (Queens Park Rangers) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Charlie Austin.

  17. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Armand Traore (Queens Park Rangers) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Joey Barton.

  18. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Almen Abdi (Watford) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Daniel Pudil.

  19. Post update

    Offside, Watford. Mathias Ranégie tries a through ball, but Troy Deeney is caught offside.

  20. Post update

    Attempt missed. Charlie Austin (Queens Park Rangers) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left. Assisted by Bobby Zamora.

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Leicester43289679433693
2Burnley442514569353489
3Derby442491179493081
4QPR4422101256411576
5Wigan4320101357421570
6Brighton4417151251391266
7Nottm Forest441617116558765
8Ipswich441714135852665
9Reading4317131363531064
10Blackburn441616126358564
11Bournemouth441712156364-163
12Watford4315151370531760
13Middlesbrough431416135546958
14Bolton431316145456-255
15Sheff Wed441314176160153
16Leeds44158215565-1053
17Huddersfield441311205462-850
18Charlton431112203457-2345
19Doncaster441111223866-2844
20Millwall441014204473-2944
21Birmingham431110225568-1343
22Blackpool441013213663-2743
23Barnsley44912234171-3039
24Yeovil44813234369-2637
View full Championship table

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