TABLE-topping Queens Park Rangers hosted Scunthorpe United in a bid to further assert their promotion credentials.
Table-topping Queens Park Rangers hosted Scunthorpe United in a bid to further assert their promotion credentials.
Teams: Queens Park Rangers v Scunthorpe United
Date: Saturday April 8, 1967
Competition: Football League Third Division
Venue: Loftus Road, London
Rangers were riding high at the top of the Third Division and were looking sure bets for promotion under Alec Stock.
Central to their success was the charismatic centre-forward Rodney Marsh who had lit up the division with breathtaking skills and plenty of goals – 27 in total after a mere 38 games.
Stock’s side had only suffered two defeats all season to date, with one defeat in 19 games prior to the home game with the Iron.
It was clear to see that Rangers were exhuming confidence after their triumphant League Cup run, culminating in a Wembley win over West Bromwich Albion – their first major trophy.
To display their great dominance in the league, Rangers had gone seven games without conceding. Victories over Darlington (4-0), Gillingham (2-0) and Workington (2-0) set them up nicely for the weekend’s fixture.
Scunthorpe’s form had been somewhat sporadic, epitomised by thrashing Workington at the Old Show Ground (4-1) before losing the reverse fixture just a day later (1-0).
Stock made one change from the side that defeated Workington, with Ron Hunt making way at the back for 19-year-old debutante Dave Clement – who partnered fellow youth product Colin Moughton.
Rangers stormed the encounter upholding all the pre-match predictions and expectations from supporters. They had only been defeated once at Loftus Road all season and fired their way to an impressive win.
Marsh took his league tally to 29 for the season with a brace, while popular wide-man Mark Lazarus continued his impressive form with a couple to accompany.
Skipper Mike Keen – who had lifted Rangers’ first major trophy at Wembley just over a month previously – scored the fifth, with Scunthorpe replying with a solitary strike.
As a result Rangers eased over the line, somewhat stumbling to promotion with one win in five, as Stock tried varying combinations – testing them for the impending Second Division season.
Rangers finished 12 points clear of second-placed Middlesbrough as they cantered to promotion in what has been hailed as one of the greatest seasons in the club’s history.
Scunthorpe finished in 18th place in the Third Division, but on the backdrop of the following season, that achievement wasn’t too bad – in 1967-69 they were relegated as second bottom of the Third Division.
Final Score: Queens Park Rangers 5-1 Scunthorpe United
Queens Park Rangers: Springett, Hazell, Langley, Keen, Clement, Moughton, Lazarus, Sanderson, Allen, Marsh, Morgan R.
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