Premier League
QPRQueens Park Rangers3West BromWest Bromwich Albion2

Queens Park Rangers 3-2 West Bromwich Albion

By Ian BakerBBC Sport
Charlie Austin
Charlie Austin celebrates scoring his second goal. He now has 11 goals for the season
  • QPR climb out of the bottom three
  • Austin scores first Premier League hat-trick
  • West Brom had led 2-0
  • Lescott and Varela had scored first Albion goals

Charlie Austin's hat-trick helped Queens Park Rangers climb out of the Premier League's bottom three as they came from 2-0 down to beat West Brom.

Joleon Lescott's header and Silvestre Varela's low strike, their first Albion goals, put the visitors in charge.

However, Austin fired in a penalty after Leroy Fer was pulled back to reduce the deficit at the break.

Austin volleyed in from three yards to level and completed his hat-trick with a header from another corner to win it.

It was the striker's 11th goal of the season, cementing his position as the leading English goalscorer in the top flight behind Manchester City's Argentina forward Sergio Aguero and Chelsea's Spanish striker Diego Costa.

Fantastic day for QPR - Redknapp

However, the euphoric scenes that followed at the final whistle were a marked contrast to the feeling inside Loftus Road after just 20 minutes.

West Brom started brightly with Craig Gardner denied by home keeper Rob Green, while Brown Ideye blazed over from a good position.

And Albion took the lead when Lescott headed home after Sessegnon had flicked on Sebastien Pocognoli's corner.

Head coach Alan Irvine had talked positively this week about Varela, who is on loan from Porto, and the lively forward showed why as he put West Brom further ahead.

Austin powers QPR
Charlie Austin has now scored 31 goals in 52 games since signing for QPR from Burnley.

Varela's driving run and one-two with Sessegnon on the edge of the penalty area was followed by a composed finish from 12 yards as Irvine, under pressure until a 1-0 victory over Aston Villa last time out, punched the air in delight.

However, Rangers were level within five minutes.

Referee Craig Pawson bravely punished James Morrison for grappling with Leroy Fer as a corner was swung into the box and Austin, who was returning after suspension, powered in the resulting penalty.

But West Brom could have been 3-1 ahead with Green making good saves to keep out Gardner's deflected 25-yard free-kick and then Sessegnon powerful drive which followed a surging run into the box.

Albion deserved to win - Irvine

Green's agility was rewarded when Austin instinctively stuck out a foot to volley in from close range after Richard Dunne had headed Joey Barton's corner onto the bar.

Within seconds, Barton went down in the box under a challenge from Morrison but Pawson waved away penalty appeals.

Both sides had chances in a thrilling contest with Sessegnon shooting wide from Gardner's lay-off while Albion keeper Ben Foster denied Austin a hat-trick with a sharp near-post save.

But Austin was not to be denied and he rose highest to head home another Barton corner. It was Austin's ninth goal in the last seven matches and will increase calls for him to be handed an England call-up.

Albion substitute Saido Berahino, who had earlier volleyed over, came close to a last-gasp equaliser, striking the underside of the bar from an acute angle.

QPR manager Harry Redknapp told Sky Sports News: "Charlie is a great story. He's struggled around non-league for years and suddenly gets a break. It's Roy of the Rovers stuff.

"He is a great lad and you could not wish it on a better boy. He's been out on a building site in the freezing cold and knows what it's like.

"A lot of lads get given everything, he's worked for it. He's a great example."

West Brom head coach Alan Irvine said: "We deserved to win the game and the fact that we didn't was down to us not defending well at three corners and not being clinical.

"Austin is a top player. As I said this week when I was Sheffield Wednesday manager I wanted to sign him. He looks a very good player.

"It's bitterly disappointing to leave with nothing as I would have been disappointed with just a point."

Match of the Day analysis
Former England defender Phil Neville: "Charlie Austin is single-handedly keeping QPR out of the bottom three. His overall goalscoring record is fantastic. He is one of the in-form strikers in the league this season. At the start of the season I had my doubts about whether he could step up to the Premier League, but he has done really well."
Former England striker Alan Shearer: "It helps Charlie Austin having Bobby Zamora up front, who is willing to be a bit of a battering ram. Austin's finishing looks natural and it's an incredible story from where he was to where he is now."
Joleon Lescott
Lescott rises highest to score his first goal since September 2012.
Silvestre Varela and Steven Caulker
Varela wins his race with Steven Caulker to score West Brom's second - and his first for the club
Charlie Austin
Austin slots home a penalty and has now scored in each of the last five QPR home games
Stephane Sessegon and Yun Suk-Young
Sessegon and Yun Suk-Young battle for the ball. The latter was forced off with an injury in the first half.
Charlie Austin
Austin bundles home a loose ball to claim his second goal of the afternoon.
Charlie Austin
Austin leaps to head home his hat-trick, his first in the Premier League.

Line-ups

QPR

  • 1Green
  • 15Onuoha
  • 22DunneBooked at 39mins
  • 4Caulker
  • 13YunSubstituted forHillat 30'minutes
  • 24VargasSubstituted forHoilettat 67'minutes
  • 8Barton
  • 20Henry
  • 10Fer
  • 9Austin
  • 25ZamoraSubstituted forKranjcarat 80'minutes

Substitutes

  • 5Ferdinand
  • 6Hill
  • 7Phillips
  • 12McCarthy
  • 17Mutch
  • 19Kranjcar
  • 23Hoilett

West Brom

  • 1Foster
  • 2Wisdom
  • 23McAuley
  • 6Lescott
  • 15PocognoliSubstituted forGamboaat 90+1'minutes
  • 7Morrison
  • 17Dorrans
  • 29Sessegnon
  • 8Gardner
  • 27Varela
  • 9IdeyeSubstituted forBerahinoat 69'minutes

Substitutes

  • 4Baird
  • 5Yacob
  • 13Myhill
  • 16Gamboa
  • 18Berahino
  • 21Mulumbu
  • 25Dawson
Referee:
Craig Pawson
Attendance:
17,560

Match Stats

Home TeamQPRAway TeamWest Brom
Possession
Home43%
Away57%
Shots
Home17
Away16
Shots on Target
Home7
Away6
Corners
Home5
Away11
Fouls
Home16
Away8

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Queens Park Rangers 3, West Bromwich Albion 2.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Queens Park Rangers 3, West Bromwich Albion 2.

  3. Post update

    Corner, West Bromwich Albion. Conceded by Steven Caulker.

  4. Post update

    Foul by James Morrison (West Bromwich Albion).

  5. Post update

    Leroy Fer (Queens Park Rangers) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  6. Substitution

    Substitution, West Bromwich Albion. Cristian Gamboa replaces Sébastien Pocognoli.

  7. Post update

    Hand ball by Junior Hoilett (Queens Park Rangers).

  8. Post update

    Saido Berahino (West Bromwich Albion) hits the bar with a left footed shot from a difficult angle on the left. Assisted by Sébastien Pocognoli.

  9. Post update

    Corner, West Bromwich Albion. Conceded by Steven Caulker.

  10. Post update

    Corner, West Bromwich Albion. Conceded by Nedum Onuoha.

  11. Goal!

    Goal! Queens Park Rangers 3, West Bromwich Albion 2. Charlie Austin (Queens Park Rangers) header from the centre of the box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Joey Barton with a cross following a corner.

  12. Post update

    Corner, Queens Park Rangers. Conceded by Stéphane Sessegnon.

  13. Post update

    Corner, Queens Park Rangers. Conceded by Sébastien Pocognoli.

  14. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Junior Hoilett (Queens Park Rangers) right footed shot from the right side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Joey Barton.

  15. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Clint Hill (Queens Park Rangers) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked.

  16. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Leroy Fer (Queens Park Rangers) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Charlie Austin.

  17. Post update

    Attempt missed. Saido Berahino (West Bromwich Albion) right footed shot from the right side of the six yard box is high and wide to the right.

  18. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Saido Berahino (West Bromwich Albion) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Craig Gardner.

  19. Substitution

    Substitution, Queens Park Rangers. Niko Kranjcar replaces Bobby Zamora.

  20. Post update

    Offside, Queens Park Rangers. Joey Barton tries a through ball, but Bobby Zamora is caught offside.