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  • Writer's pictureBy Yann Tear at Loftus Road

QPR bow out of the cup after Norwich City's injury time winner


Carabao Cup First Round

QPR (0) 0

Norwich City (0) 1 Rowe 90+9


The quality was patchy. The pitch, at least, was lovely.


A Jonathan Rowe header from a fine cross by Kellen Fisher settled a drab encounter just as penalties loomed. It was virtually the last act of a night that will not live long in the memory.


The result means QPR miss out on a second round tie with Bristol City. It is a familiar tale for Rangers in the League Cup.


A re-turfing caused this cup tie to be put back a week and for the R's opening home fixture against Watford to be relocated to Vicarage Road - with pretty terrible consequences.


Here at least was something resembling an even contest, although Norwich, now under the guidance of David Wagner, the ex-Huddersfield boss, carried the greater threat and midfield power and they ended the match with players of Premier League experience off the bench in Ashley Barnes and Josh Sargent.


Gareth Ainsworth could afford to be a little more relaxed about the tie than he might have been, had Rangers not got their first Championship points on the board in their weekend win at Cardiff City.


This is a campaign Rangers are anxious to start well given last season's near-catastrophic collapse which almost say them fall through the trapdoor. The Carabao Cup may not feature prominently in that plan but Ainsworth it still fond of it.


In his programme notes he mentioned the time he led the R's up at Old Trafford for a tie that was settled by a Carlos Tevez penalty and ended with a glass of wine with Sir Alex Ferguson.


Canaries fans seemed to think much of the competition too, packing the upper school end - 1,500 among less than 8,000.


That said, only four first-teamers started for QPR in what was an unfamiliar looking line-up. The visit of Ipswich Town on Saturday remains the priority.


Clear chances were hard to come by. Lyndon Dykes almost got on the end of an Andre Dozzell nod-down as two of the four combined, while Albert Adomah got down the right to send in a couple of decent crosses.


But the game became progressively mired in substitutions - the new maximum of six for each side leading to multiple stoppages and a cloak or torpor descending on proceedings.


A goal seemed increasingly out of the question, but in the ninth minute of stoppage time, one finally materialised. And for Rangers, it was at the wrong end.


Hoops: (3-4-3) Archer (Walsh h/t) - Kakay (Fox 77), Field, Gubbins - Adomah (Drewe 85), Duke-McKenna, Dozzell (Aoraha 63), Larkeche (Paal 77) - Richards, Dykes (Kolli 64), Dixon-Bonner


Canaries: (4-2-3-1) Gunn - Fisher, Duffy, Omobamidele, Placheta - Gibbs (Rowe 69), McLean (Sara h/t) - Fassnacht (McCallum 80), Nunez, Springett (Hernandez 32) (Barnes 69) - Idah (Sargent 69)


Attendance: 7,813

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