Luton end long wait for win over QPR
Luton ended their long wait for a victory over QPR as they halted the visitors’ five-game unbeaten run with a 3-1 win at Kenilworth Road.
The Hatters had not won any of their six meetings against their West London opponents since returning to the Championship, their last league success coming back in January 2006, but that was to change after a fine performance from Nathan Jones’ side.
The hosts had the first real attempt, James Bree teed up by Henri Lansbury just outside the box, only to slice wide.
Luton then took the lead on 19 minutes when Elijah Adebayo’s cross was just over the head of Allan Campbell, Carlton Morris picking up the loose ball and finding the stooping Adebayo to head over the line from a yard out.
Hunting for a second, Luton went close when Henri Lansbury got his volley all wrong on the angle, slicing off target, before they almost doubled their lead from a set-piece on 38 minutes.
First, Bree’s low ball was met by Morris, his shot well cleared by a covering Rangers defender, before Bree picked out Adebayo, who was desperately unfortunate to see his towering header strike the inside of the post and bounce out.
Just before the break, Ilias Chair sized up a 25-yard free-kick, shooting straight at Ethan Horvath who gathered with ease.
In the second period, Morris’s backheel sent Adebayo away but his shot was blocked by a covering defender.
Rangers attempted to find a way back into the contest, with Jimmy Dunne taking aim from the edge of the box but he could not keep his shot down.
Tyler Roberts then tried his luck from distance, his daisy-cutter inches the wrong side of the post.
Luton boss Jones rang the changes midway through the half, Harry Cornick, Cameron Jerome and ex-QPR midfielder Luke Freeman on as Town looked to try and get a foothold on proceedings once more.
Jake Clarke-Salter then crashed against the bar from eight yards out, his follow up claimed by the diving Horvath.
Jones’ changes came up trumps with 13 minutes to go, Jerome robbing Rob Dickie of the ball and, when Seny Dieng came rushing out, the keeper could only send his clearance against Dunne, the rebound bouncing over the line.
Taylor Richards’ low 20-yarder was then gathered by Horvath, although as the game entered stoppage time Rangers had one back, the ball bouncing in off keeper Horvath.
Just when it looked like the nerves were going to jangle, Luton had a third, with Cornick picking out Freeman to tap home and seal victory.