EBERE Eze’s spot-kick double saw QPR make it six wins in eight Sky Bet Championship matches as they came from behind to beat Hull City on Saturday afternoon.
Trailing to Jarrod Bowen’s well-taken opener, Ryan Manning deservedly restored parity for the R’s just before half-time by firing home from just inside the box.
From there, Rangers went on to completely dominate the second period and Eze became too hot to handle on 77 minutes when he was tripped inside the box by Eric Lichaj.
The forward confidently converted his penalty and 10 minutes later he did likewise, having this time been fouled by Kevin Stewart.
Josh Magennis pulled one back for Hull but it was certainly a deserved three points for Rangers and the victory lifts QPR into fifth place in the table.
In terms of team news, manager Mark Warburton named an unchanged XI to the one that began against Blackburn Rovers last time out.
The R’s started on the front foot – dominating the early possession statistics – and they forced the first shot of the game on three minutes. A delightful nutmeg from Eze bought him some space on the edge of the box and he fired a shot goalwards that stopper George Long pushed behind for a corner.
With 15 minutes on the clock, Rangers had the ball in the net when Nahki Wells tucked home from a tight angle but the strike was ruled out for a foul by the Bermudian striker on a Hull defender.
The let-off seemed to spark the hosts into life and three minutes later they created their first chance. Polish winger Kamil Grosicki broke down the left but he could only fire his shot straight into the chest of Liam Kelly.
Rangers’ stopper was beaten on 29 minutes, though. Bowen got in behind the back-line and sent an early drive across Kelly and into the far corner. It was a good finish.
The opener had come against the run of play but, buoyed by their goal, Hull almost grabbed a second soon afterwards. Jackson Irvine sent a cross towards Tom Eaves at the far post and his header was hacked clear by Yoann Barbet.
The momentum had shifted Hull’s way and, as the R’s worked themselves back into proceedings, Ilias Chair had a close-range strike charged down. And on 43 minutes, Eze had a free-kick brilliantly tipped behind by goalkeeper Long.
QPR’s equaliser was on its way and it arrived immediately after that Eze free-kick.
Hull failed to clear the corner, following Eze’s set-piece, and after the ball was worked back into the box Manning picked out the bottom corner from 12 yards.
It ensured that the R’s went in deservedly level at the break and Warburton’s men came close to grabbing a second goal a couple of minutes into the second period. Chair let fly from range and Long acrobatically tipped it over his crossbar.
Rangers came so close to going in front on 52 minutes. Eze waltzed into the box and squared for Chair but a stunning tackle from Callum Elder deflected his strike out of play. It prevented a certain goal.
The QPR pressure was now constant and Josh Scowen and Wells were next to go close. First, Scowen saw a deflected cross land just in front of the post and the same man then forced Long into a good save by connecting with Eze’s cross moments later. The loose ball landed at the feet of Wells and he could only steer the rebound over.
Goalkeeper Long was extended again 20 minutes from time and it was Scowen that he foiled once more. The midfielder met Angel Rangel’s cross with a glancing header that the stopper got a strong hand to to force a corner.
It seemed like only a matter of time before the R’s bagged a second and they were presented with a golden chance to get it on 77 minutes. Eze stole possession on the half-way line and drove all the way into the box before being hauled down by Lichaj.
Referee Tony Harrington had no choice other than to point to the spot and Eze made no mistake with the penalty kick, calmly sliding it into the corner.
The forward deservedly took the acclaim of the traveling R’s faithful and 10 minutes later he won his team another penalty when he was chopped down by Kevin Stewart.
Again, he made no mistake from the spot, this time picking out the other corner of the net to beat goalkeeper Long.
Hull pulled one back through Magennis in the sixth minute of stoppage time but they could not force an equaliser after that, as Ranger held on record a more-than-warranted victory.