RANGERS fell to their second 1-0 defeat in seven days – with another early goal sealing their fate against Charlton Athletic.
This cross-capital clash was a rather untidy encounter, decided in the 12th minute.
Darren Pratley struck the game’s only goal at The Valley, heading home a Josh Cullen corner.
R’s boss Mark Warburton made one change to his starting XI following defeat to Barnsley in W12 a week ago.
Geoff Cameron returned from suspension to line up in Rangers’ midfield, with Luke Amos dropping down among the substitutes.
QPR began in a 4-2-3-1 formation: Liam Kelly; Angel Rangel, Conor Masterson, Yoann Barbet (captain), Ryan Manning; Dom Ball, Cameron; Bright Osayi-Samuel, Ilias Chair, Ebere Eze; Jordan Hugill.
The first 10 or so minutes made for an even spectacle, with Rangers – wearing black armbands to remember former coach Theo Foley – exchanging passes nicely.
The R’s fashioned the first effort of the contest on 11 minutes, with Eze linking with Osayi-Samuel before striking wide from the edge of the box.
Hosts Charlton would strike the first blow, however, edging in front only a minute later.
Cullen’s right-wing corner was met by Pratley on 10 yards, with Rangers goalkeeper Kelly unable to keep out the experienced midfielder’s subsequent downward header.
Charlton threatened again in the 16th minute – QPR’s defence snuffing out former R’s loanee Tomer Hemed with a block in the nick of time as he played himself into space with a neat one-two.
Though the first half remained even, Hoops custodian Kelly was forced into an important reaction save in the 36th minute, beating away Macauley Bonne’s near-post attempt after the latter sped away and into the penalty area.
Rangers were unable to provide a response before the break. Eze – with time to pick his spot – blasted way over from 18 yards in the 38th minute.
They really should have done only seconds after the restart, though.
Rangel’s low ball in from the right was stabbed towards goal by Hugill on six yards, but Charlton ‘keeper Dillon Phillips pulled off a fine block to preserve the home lead.
The R’s began the second period with added purpose and, after patient approach play, Manning poked wide of the left-hand post in the 55th minute.
The game began to open up and Charlton had a goal ruled out for offside in the 58th minute, after Bonne headed home from close range.
Rangers then threw on Olamide Shodipo in the 60th minute, for Chair, before Aramide Oteh, Luke Amos and Todd Kane were introduced 10 minutes later.
Cameron, Osayi-Samuel and Rangel made way.
With the R’s – who used their final sub when Faysal Bettache replaced Ball in the 77th minute for his QPR league debut – having to commit bodies forward as they went in search of an equaliser, the hosts threatened to add a second goal on more than one occasion.
Two minutes from the end of normal time, Kelly fashioned a smart stop to keep out Charlton sub Alfie Doughty's fierce low drive.
Five minutes were added on at the death, but unfortunately Rangers couldn’t find a way back into the contest - stoppage time passing without much incident.