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St Andrew's win sends QPR to Wembley - History
Friday, 15th Dec 2017 16:03 by Clive Whittingham

Half a century on from QPR’s famous League Cup win over West Brom, LFW looks back to the semi-final at Birmingham City ahead of the trip to St Andrew’s on Saturday.

Memorable Match

Birmingham City 1 Queens Park Rangers 4, Tuesday January 17, 1967, League Cup Semi Final

Third Division QPR, of course, beat First Division West Bromwich Albion in the 1967 League Cup final at Wembley – the first to be staged at the national stadium - recovering from two goals down at half time to win 3-2. But the scorer of the winning goal in the final, Mark Lazarus, always rated the rampant 7-2 aggregate win against Birmingham in the semi-final, and the win against Leicester before that, as the better achievement.

QPR started the 1966/67 Third Division season with a draw against Shrewsbury in the first match and a defeat to Watford in the second. It gave little indication of what was to follow as Alec Stock’s team went onto secure a historic league and cup double, winning promotion into the Second Division and claiming the League Cup at Wembley into the bargain.

The run to a two legged semi-final with Birmingham City had been long and arduous. A famous 4-2 giant killing against Leicester City with goals from Rodney Marsh, Les Allen and Mark Lazarus had been the highlight but Rangers had also ploughed through Colchester who’d been vanquished 5-0 with four goals from Marsh; Aldershot where a replay at Loftus Road was required after a 1-1 draw away from home; Swansea Town who were beaten by goals from defenders Mike Keen and Tony Hazell; and Carlisle United.

Birmingham were a Second Division side themselves, managed by Stan Cullis and backed by millionaire owner Clifford Coombs. They’d spent big on Bert Murray and Barry Bridges from Chelsea and Nottingham Forest winger Trevor Hockey among others and were therefore heavy favourites in the semi-final and in fact led 1-0 at half time in the first leg up at St Andrews. But QPR cut loose in the second half, with Allen, Marsh and Lazarus on the scoresheet again along with Roger Morgan in a 4-1 win. That set up a second leg at Loftus Road where QPR simply had to see the job through.

Initially there were nerves, with Birmingham throwing caution to the wind. But ten minutes after half time Rodney Marsh turned and hit an instinctive snap shot that caught goalkeeper Jim Herriot badly positioned and flat footed. Now 5-1 on aggregate there really was no way back for the visitors. Inside right Eric Barber did find an equaliser for them but gaps started to appear as they chased the impossible creating space for Mike Keen to head home Roger Morgan’s cross and Marsh to stride onto Hazell’s pass and smash in a third.

Rangers had destroyed Birmingham all over again, winning 3-1 to seal a 7-2 aggregate success. Manager Alec Stock said: “I’m as bucked as hell. This is a great thing for the club and could be a great thing for football.” His opposite number Stan Cullis, who would late sign Lazarus from an unhappy spell at Wolves, added: “We didn’t lose it tonight, we lost it at St Andrews. Rangers deserved to win both matches and they go to Wembley with our best wishes.”

QPR went on to play First Division West Brom in the final at Wembley – the Baggies had beaten West Ham in the other semi-final – and despite trailing 2-0 the R’s fought back to win 3-2 for what remains their only major trophy success to this day.

QPR: Springett, Hazell, Langley, Keen, Hunt, Sibley, Lazarus, Sanderson, Allen, Marsh, R Morgan

Birmingham: Herriot, Murray, Green, Thomson, Sharples, Beard, Hockey, Barber, Bullock, Vowden, Bridges

Recent Meetings

Birmingham City 1 QPR 4, Saturday February 18, 2017, Championship

The best performance and result of Ian Holloway’s second spell in charge has subsequently turned out to be the last away win in 18 attempts. In the midst of a total meltdown under Gianfranco Zola at Birmingham, Rangers turned up and destroyed the hosts in the second half having gone in 1-0 up at half time through a Matt Smith header from a corner. Conor Washington doubled the lead straight after the break and then Idrissa Sylla and Yeni Ngbakoto added a third and fourth off the bench – the latter turned out to be QPR’s Goal of the Season. Nsue scored in injury time to wreck Alex Smithies’ clean sheet but this was a dominant display that promised so much more to come. Lol.

Birmingham: Kuszczak 6; Nsue 6, Cogley 5 (Koyunlu 45, 5), Shotton 5, Grounds 5; Keita 5 (Robinson 31, 5), Kieftenbeld 4, Tesche 5 (Storer 82, -), Stewart 7, Adams 5; Sinclair 5

Subs not used: Legzdins, Gleeson, O’Keefe, Bielik

Goals: Nsue 90+3 (assisted Adams)

Bookings: Tesche 21 (foul), Robinson 56 (dissent), Storer 87 (foul)

QPR: Smithies 6; Furlong 7, Onuoha 8, Lynch 7, Bidwell 6; Manning 8, Hall 7, Freeman 8; Washington 8 (Ngbakoto 85, -), Smith 8 (Sylla 80, -), Wszolek 7 (Lua Lua 85, -)

Subs not used: Mackie, Ingram, Luongo, Perch

Goals: Smith 18 (assisted Freeman), Washington 47 (unassisted), Sylla 84 (assisted Wszolek), Ngbakoto 88 (free kick – won Manning)

Bookings: Lynch 50 (foul), Bidwell 82 (foul), Manning 90 (foul)

QPR 1 Birmingham City 1, Saturday September 24, 2016, Championship

QPR had lost three on the spin, including a 6-0 home defeat to Newcastle, prior to the first meeting between these sides back in September and must have feared the worst when Jutkiewicz headed in from close range to give Brum an early lead. But Steven Caulker headed in an equaliser from a Tjaronn Chery corner before half time and with substitute Pawel Wszolek impressing in the second half the R’s were unlucky not to win with Ledgzdins saving from Sylla and Borysiuk in particular.

QPR: Smithies 6; Onuoha 5, Caulker 6, Hall 5, Bidwell 6; Borysiuk 7, Luongo 6; Cousins 5 (Wzsolek 14, 7), Chery 6, Shodipo 6 (Polter 65, 5); Sylla 7

Subs not used: Lynch, Washington, Ingram, El Khayati, Henry

Goals: Caulker 39 (assisted Chery)

Bookings: Shodipo 35 (encroachment), Hall 89 (foul)

Birmingham: Ledgzdins 6; Spector 6, Shotton 5, Morrison 7, Grounds 6; Gleeson 6, Kieftenbeld 6; Davis 6 (Robinson 82, -), Adams 5 (Stewart 82, -), Maghoma 7; Jutkiewicz 6 (Storer 85, -)

Subs not used: Cotterill, Wiggins, Brown, Trueman

Goals: Jutkiewicz 23 (assisted Maghoma/Morrison)

Bookings: Kieftenbeld 68 (foul)

QPR 2 Birmingham City 0, Saturday February 27, 2016, Championship

One of QPR’s better performances last season came in the home fixture against Birmingham City. The Blues were still well in the play-off mix at the time but Rangers set about them impressively and took the lead when James Perch fed Tjaronn Chery in the area and the Dutchman turned on the ball and cutely sought out the far corner. The lead was doubled before half time when Seb Polter was felled and Junior Hoilett converted the penalty and although Karl Henry had to clear from the goal line soon after half time, it was QPR who created the better chances in the second half and Massimo Luongo went close to making it three.

QPR: Smithies 6; Onuoha 7, Angella 7, Hall 6, Perch 7; Henry 7, Luongo 7, Phillips 6 (Washington 82, -), Chery 8 (Tozser 76, 6), Hoilett 6 (El Khayati 90+3, -); Polter 7

Subs not used: Konchesky, Faurlin, Ingram, Petrasso

Goals: Chery 35 (assisted Perch), Hoilett 38 (penalty, won Polter)

Birmingham: Kuszczak 6; Shotton 5, Morrison 5, Robinson 6, Grounds 6; Gleeson 6, Kieftenbeld 6 (Vaughan 71, 5); Cotterill 7, Fabbrini 4 (Toral 63, 6), Maghoma 6 (Buckley 79, 6); Donaldson 4

Subs not used: Legzdins, Spector, Davis, Caddis

Bookings: Fabbrini 15 (foul), Morrison 39 (foul), Donaldson 60 (dissent), Toral 81 (foul)

Birmingham City 2 QPR 1, Saturday October 17, 2015, Championship

Chris Ramsey’s position as QPR manager came under increased threat following the first meeting between these sides last season. Soon after co-chairman Tony Fernandes had publicly stated promotion meant everything to him this season the club picked an hour before the game at Birmingham to announce that Neil Warnock would be returning to the club in an advisory capacity. Things looked ok when Matt Phillips turned and fired in an opening goal but when Paul Konchesky let Paul Robinson in for a free header equaliser and Nedum Onuoha conceded a soft penalty for Paul Caddis to put Birmingham in front the away end turned nasty with chants for Ramsey’s head, Warnock’s elevation, and some nasty anti-German abuse for late substitute Seb Polter.

Birmingham: Kuszczak 6; Caddis 7, Morrison 7, Robinson 7, Grounds 6; Gleeson 6, Kieftenbeld 6, Davis 6 (Shinnie 74, 6); Gray 7, Donaldson 7 (Solomon-Otabor 87, -), Maghoma 7

Subs not used: Legzdins, Toral, Spector, Lowry, Brock-Madsen

Goals: Robinson 24 (assisted Gray), Caddis 63 (penalty, won Donaldson)

Bookings: Caddis 67 (kicking ball away)

QPR: Green 6; Perch 4, Onuoha 5, Hall 7, Konchesky 4; Henry 5, Sandro 6 (Tozser 72, 5); Phillips 5, Fer 6 (Luongo 71, 7), Chery 6; Emmanuel-Thomas 7 (Polter 84, -)

Subs not used: Doughty, Faurlin, Smithies, Angella

Goals: Phillips 16 (assisted Onuoha)

Bookings: Perch 24 (foul), Onuoha 63 (dissent)

Birmingham City 0 QPR 2, Saturday March 8, 2014, Championship

Both clubs were in something of a crisis when they met at St Andrew's in March 2014. QPR had suffered injuries to key players and won just one match in eight, killing off any hopes of automatic promotion. Accounts released earlier in the week showed the scale of the problem if promotion wasn't won. Brum meanwhile had seen owner Carson Yeung convicted of money laundering in Honk Kong in the lead up to the game and came into the match on a run of one win from 15 home matches. Ravel Morrison won the game for the visitors with a spectacular long range free kick in the first half, and a crisp finish on the end of a decent move in the second.

Birmingham: Randolph 6; Caddis 6, Ferguson 6 (Blackett 73, 6), Robinson 5, Spector 5; Ibe 6 (Novak 67, 5) , Ferguson 5, Adeyemi 6, Huws 7, Packwood 5, Burke 6; Zigic 4 (Macheda 58, 5)

Subs not used: Martin, Doyle, Lee, Shinnie

Bookings: Robinson 12 (foul), Caddis 45 (foul)

QPR: Green 7; Onuoha 7, Hill 6, Dunne 6, Assou-Ekotto 6; Hoilett 5 (O’Neil 70, 6), Barton 7, Jenas 7, Traore 7; Morrison 8 (Carroll 87, -); Doyle 7 (Keane 84, -)

Subs not used: Hughes, Henry, Murphy, Benayoun

Goals: Morrison 14 (unassisted), 73 (assisted Jenas)

QPR 1 Birmingham City 0, Saturday September 16, 2013, Championship

Ultimately, QPR’s first meeting with Birmingham City since 2008 finished exactly as their last did – a 1-0 home win – but there was none of the drama and entertainment of the ‘blizzard’ match as the R’s struggled past Lee Clark’s side back in September. In the type of performance that became typical of the first half of QPR’s season Rangers never once clicked into gear, and relied on the defensive abilities of Richard Dunne and Nedum Onuoha to keep a Birmingham side that created, and missed, several decent chances at bay. Back in those days of course, one Charlie Austin led the attack and four minutes after half time he bundled in the only goal of the game from a yard out after a corner caused a goal mouth scramble. These days, without Austin, it’s not quite so simple.

QPR: Green 6; Simpson 6, Onuoha 7, Dunne 7, Hill 6; O’Neil 7, Barton 6, Carroll 6 (Jenas 82, -), Hoilett 5 (Phillips 39, 5); Zamora 5 (Wright-Phillips 46, 6), Austin 6

Subs: Murphy, Assou-Ekotto, Faurlin, Henry

Goals: Austin 49 (assisted Onuoha)

Bookings: Barton 43 (repetitive fouling)

Birmingham: Randolph 6; Burn 6, Bartley 6, Robinson 6; Elliott 7, Spector 6, Caddis 6, Adeyemi 6 (Lovenkrands 82, -); Burke 7, Novak 6, Shinnie 6 (Ferguson 55, 6)

Subs: Doyle, Ambrose, Reilly, Lee, Brown

Bookings: Shinnie 49 (foul), Spector 78 (diving), Robinson 86 (foul), Burn 90+1 (foul)

Birmingham City 1 QPR 0, Saturday October 4, 2008, Championship

Iain Dowie was still in charge when the sides met at St Andrews’ in October 2008 for an early Saturday match screened live by Sky. Fitz Hall and goalkeeper Radek Cerny shared the blame for a dreadfully soft winning goal, scored on the stroke of half time by Kevin Phillips, but in truth the R’s rarely threatened the goal at the other end and the home team deserved their win. The game is best known by R’s fans as the opening scene of the Four Year Plan documentary where Flavio Briatore is seen in the car after the game branding Dowie a “hooligan” with “no strategy”.

Birmingham: Taylor 7, Parnaby 7, Jaidi 8, Ridgewell 8, Murphy 7, Larsson 8, Carsley 7 (Nafti 50, 6), Agustien 6, Owusu-Abeyie 7 (McFadden 75, 6), Phillips 7 (Jerome 80, -), O'Connor 8

Subs Not Used: Doyle, Martin Taylor

Booked: Ridgewell (deliberate handball)

Goals: Phillips 45+1 (assisted O'Connor)

QPR: Cerny 6, Ramage 4 (Connolly 87, -), Hall 5, Stewart 6, Delaney 4, Rowlands 5 (Ledesma 80, -), Leigertwood 6, Mahon 6 (Buzsaky 68, 6), Cook 6, Blackstock 5, Agyemang 5

Subs Not Used: Camp, Parejo

Booked: Leigertwood (foul)

Previous Results

Head to Head >>> Birmingham wins 22 >>> Draws 13 >>> QPR wins 19

2016/17 Birmingham 1 QPR 4 (Smith, Washington, Sylla, Ngbakoto)

2016/17 QPR 1 Birmingham 1 (Caulker)

2015/16 QPR 2 Birmingham 0 (Chery,

2015/16 Birmingham 2 QPR 1 (Phillips)

2013/14 Birmingham 0 QPR 2 (Morrison 2)

2013/14 QPR 1 Birmingham 0 (Austin)

2008/09 QPR 1 Birmingham 0 (Di Carmine)

2008/09 Birmingham 1 QPR 0

2006/07 Birmingham 2 QPR 1 (Cook)

2006/07 QPR 0 Birmingham 2

2000/01 Birmingham 0 QPR 0

2000/01 QPR 0 Birmingham 0

1999/00 QPR 2 Birmingham 2 (Steiner, Kiwomya)

1999/00 Birmingham 2 QPR 0

1998/99 Birmingham 1 QPR 0

1998/99 QPR 0 Birmingham 1

1997/98 Birmingham 1 QPR 0

1997/98 QPR 1 Birmingham 1 (Barker)

1996/97 QPR 1 Birmingham 1 (Spencer)

1996/97 Birmingham 0 QPR 0

1985/86 Birmingham 2 QPR 0

1985/86 QPR 3 Birmingham 1 (Bannister, Rosenior, Dawes)

1983/84 Birmingham 0 QPR 2 (Gregory, Fenwick)

1983/84 QPR 2 Birmingham 1 (Stainrod, Fenwick)

1979/80 QPR 1 Birmingham 1 (Burke)

1979/80 Birmingham 2 QPR 1 (Allen)

1978/79 QPR 1 Birmingham 3 (Roeder)

1978/79 Birmingham 3 QPR 1 (Busby)

1977/78 QPR 0 Birmingham 0

1977/78 Birmingham 2 QPR 1 (Masson)

1976/77 QPR 2 Birmingham 2 (Masson, Webb)

1976/77 Birmingham 2 QPR 1 (Eastoe)

1975/76 QPR 2 Birmingham 1 (Masson 2)

1975/76 Birmingham 1 QPR 1 (Thomas)

1974/75 Birmingham 4 QPR 1 (Thomas)

1974/75 QPR 0 Birmingham 1

1973/74 Birmingham 4 QPR 0

1973/74 QPR 2 Birmingham 0* (Leach, Givens)

1973/74 QPR 2 Birmingham 2 (Bowles, Hynd og)

1971/72 Birmingham 0 QPR 0

1971/72 QPR 2 Birmingham 0** (Francis, Marsh)

1971/72 QPR 1 Birmingham 0 (Marsh)

1970/71 QPR 5 Birmingham 2 (Marsh 3, Venables, McCulloch)

1970/71 Birmingham 2 QPR 1 (Bridges)

1969/70 QPR 2 Birmingham 1 (Bridges 2)

1969/70 Birmingham 3 QPR 0

1967/68 QPR 2 Birmingham 0 (Leach, I Morgan)

1967/68 Birmingham 2 QPR 0

1966/67 QPR 3 Birmingham 1** (Marsh 2, Keen)

1966/67 Birmingham 1 QPR 4** (Marsh, R Morgan, Lazarus, Allen)

1951/52 Birmingham 1 QPR 0

1951/52 QPR 0 Birmingham 2

1950/51 QPR 2 Birmingham 0 (Farrow, Shepherd)

1950/51 Birmingham 1 QPR 1 (Addinall)

1913/14 Birmingham 1 QPR 2*(Gregory, Miller)

* - FA Cup

** - League Cup

Connections

Trevor Francis >>> Birmingham 1971-1979 >>> QPR 1988-1990

Trevor Francis was enjoying a fruitful Indian summer spearheading the QPR attack under Jim Smith towards the end of the 1980s when he was thrust into the managerial spotlight himself for the first time.

He'd been part of an English invasion at Glasgow Rangers under Graeme Souness, and won the Scottish League Cup in 1987 before moving back south of the border to Loftus Road. He was reasonably prolific for Rangers, starting 1988/89 in particularly decent touch, scoring three of QPR's first five goals before missing a penalty in fairly shambolic circumstances in a 3-2 loss at Millwall's hostile Old Den.

On the field he's best remembered among the faithful few in Shepherd's Bush for a remarkable hat trick in a victory against Aston Villa at Villa Park, the third a thing or real beauty and one in the eye for the home fans who'd abused him for his Birmingham City connections throughout the game.

When Smith left for Newcastle Francis was made player manager at Loftus Road but his inexperience, and perhaps arrogance, showed when he infamously fined midfielder Martin Allen for leaving the team hotel on the eve of a game at Newcastle to attend the birth of his child back in London.

Allen told QPRnet: "I have no regrets over the situation now. I was honest with Trevor Francis on the Thursday, and I told Peter Shreeves on the Friday night what I was doing. My wife went into labour at half past two on the Saturday morning, she was still in labour at half past six when I rang again and I have no regrets about getting on that aeroplane.

"When I was playing for West Ham against Trevor’s Sheffield Wednesday I ended up in hospital with a punctured lung and broken ribs. I had an operation on the Saturday evening and about eleven o’clock that night the sister came in and told me that Trevor had phoned the hospital asking how I was and wishing me the very best. I must admit when she told me I wondered if I was still under the aesthetic. But it was the truth, he did ring and since that day whenever we’ve met each other we’ve always had a smile, shook hands and wished each other well and so you should."

Rangers were in relegation trouble by the time he departed after little over a year in charge. His parting shot was a spectacular one though, second from bottom QPR beat second from top Liverpool 3-2 at Loftus Road with two goals from Paul Wright and a trademark spectacular shot from Mark Falco at the Loft End.

Francis, fresh out of hospital after an operation on a long-term injury, sat at the front of the director's box in South Africa Road and was jumped on by his wife Helen in a giant fur coat at full time. He subsequently agreed a deal to bring his old friend Ray Wilkins down from Rangers to join him – Wilkins subsequently forced to deny he was taking the job himself when Francis left a week later. Ultimately, Don Howe was given the responsibility.

Francis was originally a star teenager at Birmingham City, coming through the ranks to make his debut as a 16 year old, notably scoring four times in a match against Bolton and ending his first season with 15 goals from just 22 games. His goal against QPR in 1976 has gone down in club folklore and he made the England squad for the first time a year later under Don Revie.

After a brief loan/secondment playing in the first version of the MLS for Detroit, he became the first million pound player in the UK when he was bought by Brian Clough's Nottingham Forest in February 1979. At the City Ground he became part of the remarkable rise to the pinnacle of European football – registered in time to play in the semi-finals of the European Cup, Francis scored the only goal of the final against Malmo as Forest completed a remarkable rise from midtable obscurity in Division Two to champions of the UK and Europe in little more than two years.

He was regularly used as a winger by Clough, and missed the final the following year against Hamburg with an Achilles injury that plagued him for months and eventually saw him sold off to Man City. Once more injuries hampered him, and City's growing financial problems forced a £700,000 sale to Sampdoria where he was part of the side that won the Copa Italia for the first time in the club's history. A spell at Atalanta preceded his time in Scotland.

After QPR he joined Sheffield Wednesday, initially as a player under Ron Atkinson and then later as manager where he lost in both cup 1993 cup finals to Arsenal. A subsequent spell in charge at Birmingham brought numerous play-off near misses, and a League Cup Final defeat to Liverpool, before he was replaced by Steve Bruce.

He's had a less successful stint in charge of Crystal Palace and worked as a TV pundit since.

Others >>> Grant Hall, QPR 2015-present, Birmingham 2014-2015 (loan) >>> Ravel Morrison QPR (loan) 2014, Birmingham (loan) 2013-2014 >>> Andros Townsend, QPR (loan) 2013, Birmingham (loan) 2012 >>> Andy Johnson, QPR 2012-2014, Birmingham 1997-2002 >>> Federico Macheda, Birmingham (loan) 2014, QPR (loan) 2012 >>> DJ Campbell, QPR 2011-2013, Birmimgham 2006-2007 >>> Marcus Bent, QPR (loan) 2011, Birmingham 2008-2011 >>> Rowan Vine, QPR 2007-2012, Birmingham 2006-2008 >>> Tommy Williams, QPR (loans) 2009, 2003, 2002, Birmingham 2002-2004 >>> Stephen Kelly, Birmingham 2006-2009, QPR (loan) 2003 >>> Paul Furlong, QPR 2002-2007, (loan) 2000, Birmimgham 1996-2002 >>> Paul Peschisolido, QPR (loan) 2000, Birmimgham 1996, 1994-1996 >>> Matt Jackson, Birmimgham (loan) 1996, QPR (loan) 1996 >>> Dennis Bailey, QPR 1991-1995, Birmingham 1989-1991 >>> David Seaman, QPR 1986-1990, Birmingham 1984-1986 >>> Mark Dennis QPR 1987-1988, Birmingham 1978-1982 >>> Don Givens, Birmingham 1978-1981, QPR 1972-1978 >>> Mike Kelly, Birmingham 1970-1976, QPR 1966-1970 >>> Barry Bridges, QPR 1968-1970, Birmingham 1966-1968 >>> Henry Clutterbuck, QPR 1899-1901, Small Heath 1897-1899

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