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Loftus Road Stadium (ATT 13,534) 26th December 2009 - Kick off 13:00 Ref: D Phillips

QPR Queens Park Rangers vs Bristol City Bristol C

QPR 2

J Simpson (31)
M Leigertwood (40)

ft

Bristol C 1

N Maynard (57)

Hart oversees first QPR win

First-half double enough to see off Robins

Last Updated: 26/12/09 3:29pm

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Simpson: Opened the scoring

Simpson: Opened the scoring

Paul Hart enjoyed his first win as Queens Park Rangers manager following a battling 2-1 success over Bristol City at Loftus Road.

QPR appeared to be cruising towards the points after goals from Jay Simpson and Mikele Leigertwood had the hosts 2-0 up at half-time.

Nicky Maynard struck a stunning goal for the visitors just before the hour mark, but QPR held on to secure a maiden three-point haul for Hart.

The hosts were slow starters as they struggled to get to grips with a new diamond midfield formation and were camped in their own half early on.

Hungarian star Akos Buzsaky, involved for the first time since his dressing-room 'difference of opinion' accounted for Hart's predecessor Magilton, was a bystander as City dominated.

Gavin Williams forced a save from home keeper Radek Cerny and Danny Haynes had a shot just deflected wide.

But, totally against the run of play, Rangers took the lead just after the half-hour when Fitz Hall crossed towards Simpson.

The on-loan Arsenal forward's initial touch was poor but the ball bounced kindly off Williams back into his path to poke beyond Dean Gerken for his ninth goal of the season.

Unstoppable effort

City boss Gary Johnson had considered not travelling to the game due to a chest infection.

And he must have been regretting his decision not stay in his sick bed when, five minutes before the break, Rangers went two ahead.

Leigertwood collected Buzsaky's flick, cut inside on his left foot and curled an unstoppable effort from 20 yards low inside Gerken's right-hand post.

Simpson had a chance to put the hosts out of sight after the interval when Wayne Routledge sent him through but the young striker curled his shot high and wide.

And Johnson's mood improved in the 58th minute when Maynard conjured up his 11th goal of the season in superb style.

The striker juggled Williams' pass twice in turning and shaking off two Rangers defenders before his third touch, a stunning 20-yard volley, flew past Cerny and into the top corner.

Johnson and City were twice screaming for penalties in the last 10 minutes when Maynard tumbled under last-ditch challenges from Hall and Peter Ramage but referee David Phillips waved away the appeals.

Hart saw fit to sacrifice Simpson and Buzsaky for defenders Gary Borrowdale and Matt Connolly to hold off City's late flurry - prompting derision from a number of hard-to-please Rangers fans.

And the home boss breathed a sigh of relief when City sub David Clarkson hit the side netting with the visitors' last chance.

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Table

Sky Bet Championship

Sky Bet Championship
Pos Team P Pts
1 Bournemouth 22 42
2 Ipswich Town 22 41
3 Brentford 22 40
4 Middlesbrough 22 39
5 Derby County 22 39
6 Watford 22 38
7 Norwich City 22 34
8 Blackburn Rovers 22 34
9 Nottingham Forest 22 31
10 Wolverhampton Wanderers 22 31
11 Cardiff City 22 30
12 Charlton Athletic 22 30
13 Fulham 22 28
14 Sheffield Wednesday 22 28
15 Birmingham City 22 28
16 Bolton Wanderers 22 26
17 Reading 22 25
18 Leeds United 22 24
19 Rotherham United 22 24
20 Huddersfield Town 22 24
21 Millwall 22 23
22 Brighton and Hove Albion 22 19
23 Wigan Athletic 22 17
24 Blackpool 22 13

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