In charge

Jimmy records first win

The Football League Paper - - CHAMPIONSHIP - By Colin Hen­rys

ARESUR­GENT sec­ond­half per­for­mance away to Rother­ham gave Jimmy Floyd Has­sel­baink his first win as Queens Park Rangers man­ager but the Dutch­man in­sists the hard work is still to come.

The Rs showed they can cope with­out Southamp­ton-bound striker Char­lie Austin as Ju­nior Hoi­lett, Matt Phillips and Se­bas­tian Polter all net­ted af­ter the break.

It ended a run of eight games with­out a win, de­spite Rother­ham hav­ing had the bet­ter of the first half, and Has­sel­baink ad­mit­ted it was nice to see hard work on the train­ing ground pay off.

“It feels good, more so that it was a good per­for­mance – es­pe­cially in the se­cond-half,” he said.

“Win­ning games puts play­ers in the right state of mind but we have to keep our feet on the ground.

“We had a few words at half­time. Noth­ing crazy, just or­gan­is­ing-wise and mak­ing sure the play­ers be­lieved.

“When you lift the pres­sure, you start to play freely.We need to now get to that stage from the start to give us a plat­form each game.

“We have to make sure we keep on im­prov­ing, but it is nice to get the recog­ni­tion of our hard work and those three points.”

Rother­ham had taken the game straight to their vis­i­tors, and Ne­dum On­uoha blocked shots from both Matt Der­byshire and Danny Ward in the first few min­utes.

Fit-again keeper Alex Smithies had to get down quickly to his left just two min­utes later too, as Gavin Ward’s cross spun sharply goal­wards off Karl Henry’s knee.

Af­ter weath­er­ing the ini­tial storm, QPR were on the back foot again on 29 min­utes when Massimo Luongo gave the ball away.

Paul Green turned well and beat Smithies with a curl­ing left­foot which hit the base of the post, be­fore On­uoha got across Der­byshire to de­flect the re­bound into the side-net­ting.

Rother­ham were to rue their missed chances though as the Rs seized con­trol of the game with an ex­plo­sive start to the se­cond-half.

Hoi­lett opened the scor­ing on 52 min­utes, show­ing great strength and de­ter­mi­na­tion to chase onto a long ball and stay on his feet just long enough to slot in side-footed.

Just two min­utes later Luongo’s clever chip re­leased Phillips and the winger took ad­van­tage of for­mer Black­pool team-mate Kirk Broad­foot’s slip to dou­ble the ad­van­tage.

Rother­ham made changes up front in re­sponse, but Jon­son Clarke-Har­ris was blocked at the near post on 81 min­utes as he looked to turn Joe Mat­tock’s cross in.

Em­manuel Ledesma then shot just wide from the edge of the area on 88 min­utes as the Millers looked for any way back into the match.

But Polter sealed vic­tory in stop­page time, tap­ping in from close range af­ter Leroy Fer sprung the off­side trap and squared for the striker.

And Millers’ boss Neil Red­fearn ad­mit­ted his side had ran out of legs af­ter the break

“It’s prob­a­bly one of the weird­est 3-0 de­feats I’ve ever been in­volved in,” he said. “If it had been 3-0 to us at half-time it would prob­a­bly have been about right.

“But it just shows the ruth­less na­ture of this divi­sion. If you don’t get your noses in front then you’re open to that sort of thing.

“I thought se­cond half, to be fair to the lads, there was a tinge of tired­ness in it. It’s ba­si­cally been the same play­ers for the last three games and that’s a big ask.You’re talk­ing about an ex-Premier League side and if you give them chances then they’ll be clin­i­cal.”

PIC­TURES: Ac­tion Im­ages

OPENER: Ju­nior Hoi­lett cel­e­brates scor­ing QPR’s first goal

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