Cherries edge Stan Bowles Benefit Match
RANGERS signed off for pre-season with a 1-0 loss against Premier League Bournemouth in W12, on a day when the club paid tribute to arguably our greatest-ever player.
A total of 9,386 fans witnessed this Stan Bowles Benefit Match at Loftus Road, held in order to raise vital funds for QPR’s iconic former number 10 in his fight against Alzheimer’s disease.
The match doubled up as a pre-season friendly before the start of the new Sky Bet Championship campaign next Saturday.
Ian Holloway’s men were undone by a Jordan Ibe strike just prior to the interval, ahead of Reading’s visit to the capital in a week’s time.
Stan Bowles – flanked by former team-mates Gerry Francis and Don Shanks – was given quite a reception as he led the two teams out before kick-off.
Visitors Bournemouth went close with less than a minute played.
The ball was eventually worked to goal-getter Josh King on 16 yards, but he blazed well over.
It was a lively start and Rangers were presented with a good chance of their own in only the fourth minute.
Matt Smith shot just wide from 12 yards, after the ball pinballed around the Bournemouth box.
The R’s more than held their own against top-flight opposition early on, and spurned another notable opportunity on 11 minutes.
This time, Pawel Wszolek teed up Conor Washington on 10 yards with a pinpoint right-flank cross, before the latter dragged his shot wide.
Chances continued to flow for Rangers thereafter.
Two minutes later, Smith also headed over from Luke Freeman’s teasing delivery while, in the 24th minute, Mass Luongo slid in Washington to arrow a low 18-yard effort past the foot of the left-hand post.
Opportunities became less frequent as half-time approached – but the opening goal did arrive four minutes before the break.
Ibe cut in from the right before crashing a left-footed shot past Alex Smithies from 10 yards.
Harsh on Rangers, perhaps, but they trailed at the interval nevertheless.
In contrast to the first half, the start to the second was a little slow.
R’s boss Holloway then made some five changes just short of the hour mark and, a minute later – in the 58th minute – Luongo’s 20-yard blast fizzed only inches over the crossbar.
At the other end, meanwhile, visitors Bournemouth really should have extended their lead in the 65th minute.
Both Ibe and Lys Mousset broke free of the Rangers defence and, when the former fed the latter, he forced a fine reaction stop from Smithies.
But chances were virtually non-existent after that, with QPR ultimately unable to overturn the half-time deficit in a disjointed second period.
Substitute Yeni Ngbakoto did go close to levelling matters with a free-kick in the final minute – his effort striking the left-hand post before replacement Cherries goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale eventually sprawled to claim the ball.
QPR: Smithies, Onuoha, Lynch (Furlong 46), Freeman (Manning 57), Washington (Mackie 57), Scowen (Borysiuk 57), Smith (Sylla 57), Robinson (Ngbakoto 57), Luongo, Wszolek (Petrasso 67), Perch (Goss 71).
Subs not used: Ingram.