GOALS from Lyndon Dykes and Yoann Barbet weren’t enough for the R’s, who went down 3-2 to Championship newcomers Coventry City at St. Andrew’s.
Dykes’ 41st-minute penalty effort – following a foul on Bright Osayi-Samuel – handed Rangers the lead, only for Matty Godden to level matters for the hosts moments before half-time.
QPR controlled proceedings in the first half but it was a different story after the break.
Callum O’Hare’s 50th-minute strike put Coventry in front and, despite Yoann Barbet equalising for the R’s in the 75th minute, the hosts clinched all three points thanks to Kyle McFadzean’s header in the 84th.
Hoops boss Mark Warburton named an unchanged starting XI for the trip to face Coventry.
In a 4-2-3-1 formation, QPR once again lined up as: Joe Lumley; Osman Kakay, Rob Dickie, Barbet, Lee Wallace; Geoff Cameron (captain), Tom Carroll; Osayi-Samuel, Luke Amos, Ilias Chair; Dykes.
Though neither goalkeeper was really troubled, both teams looked to get the ball down and play early on and that made for an entertaining start.
Rangers were first to fashion an attempt on target. In the fifth minute, Osayi-Samuel embarked on a rampaging run inside the home half before driving at Marko Marosi in the Coventry goal from 25 yards.
Clear chances continued to be sparse for the remainder of the first period, though it was a half that Warburton’s men took charge of – even if home ‘keeper Marosi was rarely worked.
The R’s – who threatened through Carroll’s long-range effort in the 34th minute – edged in front seven minutes later.
After his debut goal against Nottingham Forest last weekend, Dykes was again on target from the penalty spot in the 41st minute.
Osayi-Samuel was clipped by his marker on the edge of the box and, when a spot-kick was duly awarded, Dykes stepped up to hammer home past Marosi.
But the R’s – who enjoyed almost 70% of the play before the interval – were pegged back on the stroke of half-time.
Ryan Giles’ hanging cross from deep on the left was met by Godden at the back post, whose subsequent header squirmed under Lumley to put Coventry on terms.
That goal appeared to buoy the hosts heading into the second half as, just five minutes into it, City took the lead for the first time.
Fankaty Dabo’s ball in from the right was controlled by O’Hare, who subsequently kept his cool to bury the ball into the bottom left-hand corner from close range.
Suddenly, this game had been turned completely on its head, and Rangers were fortunate not to be further behind when Dabo flashed an effort wide on the hour.
Warburton opted for a change in the 71st minute, introducing Paul Smyth for Carroll as the R’s now searched for a route back into this match.
A minute later, they so nearly had it when Cameron’s header from a corner forced a smart reaction save from Marosi.
However, Rangers would restore parity come the 75th minute.
Another Chair set-piece eventually found its way to Barbet at the back post, who thundered the ball past Marosi from an acute angle to bring the R’s level.
At 2-2, Rangers rode their luck somewhat as McFadzean and Dom Hyam both went mightily close from two set-piece situations to adding a fifth goal of the game.
In the 82nd minute, QPR used their final two substitutions – introducing Dom Ball and George Thomas for Luke Amos and Ilias Chair.
But it was Coventry, who had already posted separate warning signs from corner kicks, who would clinch victory six minutes from time.
Gustavo Hamer’s right-wing centre found McFadzean, who powered his header past Lumley to make it 3-2.