MacLean rescues Pilgrims point
Plymouth end three-match losing run
Last Updated: 13/12/08 6:22pm
Second-half substitute Steven MacLean rescued a point for Plymouth against QPR.
The visitors took an unexpected lead after just 16 minutes at Home Park as Heidar Helguson netted from close range to end the visitors' 793-minute stretch without scoring away from home.
Undeterred by that early deficit, the Pilgrims produced a determined performance and got their reward with just minutes left on the clock.
MacLean stepped off the bench and smashed home a rocket shot past Radek Cerny to end a three-match losing run for Paul Sturrock's side.
The home side had begun positively and Krisztian Timar struck the post with a snap-shot in the second minute after he got on to the end of Luke Summerfield's corner.
Argyle continued to press and moments later, Rangers goalkeeper Radek Cerny was forced to tip Simon Walton's 18-yard strike around the post.
Walton then had a great chance to open the scoring in the seventh minute when he evaded his marker in the box but could only head the ball over the crossbar from six yards out following Jim Paterson's cross.
The visitors broke the deadlock against the run of play nine minutes later with their first real chance of the game.
Martin Rowlands found space on the right and he slid an intelligent ball through to Helguson and the Iceland international produced a clinical finish to dispatch the ball past goalkeeper Romain Larrieu and into the bottom-right corner of the net.
Larrieu saved well from Patrick Agyemang's long-range shot in the 26th minute and Timar did well to block Rowlands' shot from the rebound.
But Cerny was the busier of the two goalkeepers and was again called into action moments before the half-time break when he parried Jamie Mackie's speculative goal-bound strike to safety.
The match followed a similar pattern immediately after the interval as Mackie, Walton and Damien Delaney all attempted ambitious shots from distance.
Paterson created a shooting opportunity in the 63rd minute but Cerny was able to make a routine save from his effort from the edge of the penalty area before Rory Fallon headed wide five minutes later.
Paul Sturrock's side continued to press for an equaliser and midfielder Mackie was presented with a great chance in the 76th minute.
Substitute Craig Noone saw his shot from the edge of the box blocked by QPR defender Peter Ramage and the ball fell to Mackie but he lifted his shot from inside the penalty area over the crossbar.
MacLean came off the bench for the ineffective Paul Gallagher on 77 minutes and six minutes later Argyle were on level terms.
Fallon headed across the penalty area to tee up MacLean and he made no mistake from inside the six-yard box to rifle the ball past Cerny and into the top-right corner.
Both sides seemed content with a point after MacLean's equaliser and the game petered out in the final few minutes of the match.
Sky Bet Championship
Sat 13th Dec
Plymouth1 - 1QPR
Wolves2 - 0Barnsley
Burnley3 - 2So'ton
N Forest0 - 0Blackpool
C Palace2 - 1Doncaster
Reading2 - 0Norwich
Sheff Wed0 - 0Bristol C
Watford2 - 1Coventry
Swansea1 - 1Sheff Utd
Ipswich1 - 2Cardiff
Preston1 - 0Birm'ham
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