Queens Park Rangers 2-1 Reading: Lyndon Dykes double sinks Royals
Reading missed the chance to go top of the Championship after a double from Lyndon Dykes saw QPR win and move above them into third on a drizzly night at Loftus Road.
The visitors took the lead from an Andy Carroll penalty after Lucas Joao was brought down in the box by Tim Iroegbunam’s trailing leg in the 30th minute.
Just minutes later Lyndon Dykes nodded in Osman Kakay’s low cross from a tight angle in the centre of the box to equalise for the R’s.
The second half was a high-tempo back and forth affair, with chances for both sides.
Royals goalkeeper Joe Lumley was called into action twice in quick succession, with a pair of big saves to keep the hosts at bay.
QPR were awarded a penalty in the 84th minute after Iroegbunam – who gave away the spot-kick in the first half – was brought down by Mamadou Loum just inside the box.
Scotland international Dykes stepped up and drilled home from 12 yards, sending the keeper the wrong way, for his second of the match.
QPR are now level on points with top two Sheffield United and Norwich, with Reading two points further back in fourth.
The Hoops finished the stronger side but credit to the Royals, who came out hungry following the break after being outclassed in the opening 45 minutes.
The visitors showed strength and determination coming forward and pressured the hosts into a couple of loose challenges just outside the box that gave them a couple decent set-piece opportunities from favourable positions.
However both free-kicks were off the mark by some way. The second, a low and scuffed strike by former England and Liverpool striker Carroll from 30 yards out, tumbled towards the wall and the feet of QPR defenders, who were more than happy to mop up.
Though the winning penalty came against the run of play there was little doubt about the decision from referee Thomas Bramall.
The home crowd roared and Dykes stepped up with confidence to fire home his second of the night – having previously gone league games without a goal.
Michael Beale’s side are now undefeated in their past five league games and have claimed 13 points in the process.
Reading, meanwhile, have now lost three of their last four matches against opponents inside the Championship’s top 10.
QPR head coach Michael Beale told BBC Radio London:
“Due to injuries this week we’ve had to show everything – defence, stability, work-rate and quality, and I thought in the first half we were excellent.
“We started slowly in the second but then came on strong and the substitutes had an impact.
“We should be delighted with that win and now go and enjoy the weekend.
“An update on Chris Willock, he will be back before the World Cup so I’m envisioning around the Norwich and West Brom games. He will probably miss next week and the week after, but I expect him back on the pitch the week after.”
Reading manager Paul Ince told BBC Radio Berkshire:
“It was a great game and we fought until the end but I am disappointed. It looked like it was going to be a draw and no team deserved to win.
“It’s just the manner in which we gave the penalty away, stupid decisions, the geezer was going nowhere – just shepherd him across away from the goal.
“But we make a stupid foul and the referee was always going to give it. He was poor all night.
“I don’t like losing like that. We lost a game that we didn’t have to lose because of mistakes.”
- 27LairdSubstituted forKakayat 26′minutes
- 47IroegbunamBooked at 53mins
- 15FieldSubstituted forDickieat 69′minutes
- 6JohansenSubstituted forDozzellat 74′minutes
- 11RobertsSubstituted forAmosat 74′minutesBooked at 90mins
- 4HutchinsonBooked at 25minsSubstituted forHoilettat 39′minutes
- 3HolmesBooked at 83mins
- 19FornahSubstituted forEjariaat 70′minutes
- 2CarrollBooked at 45mins
- 9Lucas JoãoSubstituted forInceat 75′minutes
- Thomas Bramall
Match ends, Queens Park Rangers 2, Reading 1.
Second Half ends, Queens Park Rangers 2, Reading 1.
Luke Amos (Queens Park Rangers) is shown the yellow card.
Foul by Jake Clarke-Salter (Queens Park Rangers).
Andy Carroll (Reading) wins a free kick on the right wing.
Tim Iroegbunam (Queens Park Rangers) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Foul by Andy Yiadom (Reading).
Kenneth Paal (Queens Park Rangers) wins a free kick on the left wing.
Foul by Mamadou Loum (Reading).
Corner, Reading. Conceded by Jake Clarke-Salter.
Corner, Reading. Conceded by Seny Dieng.
Attempt saved. Tom Ince (Reading) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner.
Foul by Tim Iroegbunam (Queens Park Rangers).
Tom Ince (Reading) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Offside, Queens Park Rangers. Kenneth Paal tries a through ball, but Ilias Chair is caught offside.
Luke Amos (Queens Park Rangers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Mamadou Loum (Reading).
Goal! Queens Park Rangers 2, Reading 1. Lyndon Dykes (Queens Park Rangers) converts the penalty with a right footed shot to the bottom right corner.
Thomas Holmes (Reading) is shown the yellow card.
Penalty Queens Park Rangers. Tim Iroegbunam draws a foul in the penalty area.