London - Jamie Mackie's stoppage-time winner handed QPR a Premier League lifeline
as the hosts staged a stunning fight back to beat Liverpool 3-2 at
Loftus Road on Wednesday.
Kenny Dalglish's side were in control with 20 minutes to go after goals from Sebastian Coates and Dirk Kuyt.
But Shaun Derry pulled one back for QPR before former Liverpool striker
Djibril Cisse ran on to Taye Taiwo's cross to head home the equaliser
with four minutes remaining.
Then Mackie, who had come on as a substitute for the disappointing Joey
Barton, raced onto Luke Young's through-ball to slot home the winner.
The result moved QPR two points clear of the Premier League relegation
zone and gave the west London club renewed hope of beating the drop,
although third bottom Bolton have a game in hand on Mark Hughes's men.
QPR started nervously with Derry alone guilty of three misplaced passes in the opening two minutes.
Liverpool sensed the home side's tension and attacked relentlessly – and
if it wasn't for some determined QPR defending, the Reds could have
been 4-0 up inside 12 minutes.
On three minutes a mistake from Nedum Onuoha let Luis Suarez free to go
one-on-one with Paddy Kenny, but the QPR keeper made a diving save to
keep the Uruguayan's shot out.
Three minutes later Martin Skrtel's header from a corner was somehow kept out by a clutch of QPR players in the box.
On 10 minutes, Kuyt's close-range shot was hacked clear by Anton
Ferdinand, after Martin Kelly's header off a corner had set the Dutchman
Then Steven Gerrard's cross was just too long to reach Kuyt's outstretched leg, as QPR's defence was nowhere to be seen.
QPR finally caught sight of Liverpool's goal on 15 minutes, but Cisse's long-range shot went well wide.
And the home side almost went into a shock lead on the half hour mark
when Jose Enrique's attempted clearance of Armand Traore's cross almost
ended up in his own net.
Two minutes later Cisse came within inches of firing QPR ahead as he
lost Jay Spearing, only to skim the side netting with his shot.
Just before the break Cisse had another try from long range but his shot went well over the crossbar.
Dalglish replaced Charlie Adam with Jordan Henderson and pushed Kuyt further up front with Suarez in the second half.
And nine minutes after the break Liverpool were ahead.
Ferdinand cleared Stewart Downing's effort off the line into the path of
defender Coates, who blasted into the roof of the net with an overhead
kick from just outside the area.
After Barton was substituted to a chorus of boos, another Kenny save
denied Downing on 70 minutes, before Suarez hit the post a minute later.
But the Irishman could do nothing about Kuyt's effort for Liverpool's
second, as he dived to keep out Downing's shot and could only watch the
Dutchman put the rebound past him from close-range.
Yet Derry set up a dramatic finish for the visitors with a powerful
header from Adel Taarabt's corner on 77 minutes before Cisse's 86th
minute header levelled the score.
QPR were playing with real verve now and Mackie took advantage of some
sloppy Liverpool defending in the final moments to score what could be a
crucial goal in the relegation battle.