Dec 27 2011 By Yann Tear
Jamie Mackie Image 2
Swansea City 1-1 QPR
JAMIE Mackie's second half equaliser earned Rangers a deserved point at the Liberty Stadium to ease some of the pressure building up on Neil Warnock's men.
Rangers have recently given the impression they are wading through treacle as they await the salvation they assume January will bring them in the form of new signings.
But they can ill-afford to expect their fortunes to magically transform with the arrival of a few fresh faces and they took heart from a much more fluid display, as well as a handy draw.
The Rs enjoyed some good spells of pressure and decent amounts of possession, particularly during a second half they dominated and they looked the likelier winner as they game wore on.
They made life more than a little uncomfortable for the hosts, with Adel Taarabt enjoying maybe his best outing for the Hoops since his last visit to south Wales against Cardiff at the tail end of last season.
Mackie's goal was a route one special on 58 minutes. Paddy Kenny's clearance kick was inadvertently headed on by Swans midfielder Leon Britton and it fell just perfectly for QPR's Scotland striker (pictured), who outpaced Ashley Williams to control the ball on his chest and knock the ball past keeper Michel Vorm.
Falling a goal behind against as mean a defence as Swansea's is not a good idea, but Rangers, having made a confident start, wre a goal down after only 14 minutes.
Danny Graham took delivery of a chip from former QPR man Wayne Routledge to the edge of the box, spun away from Luke Young, and clipped a low shot inside Paddy Kenny's left hand post.
There was a hint of handball as Graham controlled the ball, but appeals, not quite full-throated from the players, were in vain.
The Rs almost hit back soon after when Joey Barton sent a rasping 25-yard drive goalwards following a quickly taken free-kick by Taarabt and Vorm had to fling up an arm to turn the ball over the bar.
Clint Hill and Helguson both sent headers over the bar late in the first half during a typical spell of pressure and the Hoops spent a decent amount of time in the Swans half, forcing corners and winning free-kicks in dangerous areas.
The Rs defence had a makeshift look to it, with Hill preferred in the centre to Danny Gabbidon or Matt Connolly, but Warnock wanted to make a statement after the lapses against Sunderland and he was rewarded with a sounder defensive display.
Rangers did get lucky when Armand Traore felled Graham with a clumsy challenge from behind, that on another day would have been punished with a penalty.
But the very next minute, Taarabt was sending a curler towards the bottom corner Vorm did really well to turn aside and it underlined the fact QPR carried the greater threat after the break.
Line-up: Kenny; Young, Hall, Hill, Traore; Barton, Derry, Faurlin, Mackie; Taarabt; Helguson. Subs not used: Cerny, Orr, Gabbidon, Connolly, Bothroyd, Smith, Wright-Phillips.