QUEENS Park Rangers’ season was petering out into mediocrity as they faced relegation-threatened Crystal Palace
Queens Park Rangers’ season was petering out into mediocrity as they faced relegation-threatened Crystal Palace
Teams: Queens Park Rangers v Crystal Palace
Date: April 11, 1955.
Competition: Football League Third Division (South)
Venue: Loftus Road, London
Rangers were coming into the game off the back of a punishing schedule that included the reverse fixture at Selhurst Park. The R’s started the month of April with a useful home win over Shrewsbury Town before back to back defeats on their travels at Palace and Walsall typified their inconsistency throughout the campaign.
This was QPR’s fourth game in nine days and indeed their third game in only four days following the brace of away disappointment.
It was a period of transition for QPR as in the previous season Rangers had changed their colours from their more customary hooped jerseys, to plain white shirts and blue shorts in a bid to alter the club’s fortunes. Floodlight pylons were also installed at Loftus Road to usher in a new age of prosperity.
It was also a period of transition for Crystal Palace with Laurie Scott making way for Cyril Spiers mid-way through the season after three years at the helm. Their form on the road was relatively poor with two wins in 20 away fixtures, but bucked the trend with a 4-1 win away at Walsall in March.
Their form away from Selhurst Park was a cause for concern conceding four goals twice, five goals twice and an almighty 7-1 away thumping at the hands of promotion-chasing Watford.
QPR made three changes from the side that were thumped at Fellows Park two days previously. Arthur Longbottom came in for only his fifth game of the season in place on Conway Smith, with Keith Rutter and Ernest Shepherd coming in for Albert Pounder and Michael Powell.
Striker Willie Clarke bagged his 14th goal of the season, and it proved to be the only goal of the game as Queens Park Rangers triumphed in front of a nearly 9,000 crowd at Loftus Road. In truth it meant for little with the R’s firmly locked in mid-table, but nevertheless it was a confidence-boosting win over close rivals Palace.
The R’s rounded off the campaign in 15th place, with Palace finishing five places and six points below them. A positive from QPR’s perspective was that crowds had once again picked up to average 11,215 after a lull in the previous campaign.
Final Score: Queens Park Rangers 1-0 Crystal Palace
Queens Park Rangers: Brown, Woods, Ingham, Nicholas, Powell, Angell, Kerrins, Longbottom, Clark, Cameron, Shepherd.
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