Report | Queens Park Rangers U21s 3 Swansea City U21s 1

7th March
Kai Ludvigsen
Image: Louis James

Ten-man Swansea City Under-21s saw their unbeaten run come to an end as Queens Park Rangers claimed their third consecutive win at the Powerday Stadium.

After a quiet opening, the hosts took the lead through Algerian winger Adam Dougui and, despite a handful of chances from the Swans, the R's retained their lead through to half-time.

Rangers extended their lead early in the second half with Kayden Harrack drilling the ball into the net, but the deficit was lessened minutes later as Tivonge Rushesha's spot-kick brought the visitors back into the game.

Both sides were reduced the 10 men as Arkell Jude-Boyd and Josh Thomas received second yellow cards. 

The Swans would remain just a goal down until Rafferty Pedder sealed the victory for the R's with an audacious effort in stoppage time.

The Swans selection saw Rushesha captain the squad on his first start in 10 months, after recovering from a second ACL injury.  

Dan Watts, Iwan Morgan and Richard Faakye were promoted from the under-18s and were named among the substitutes, while Ben Hughes started in goal.

The visitors began well, Thomas getting on to a ball over the top to find Lincoln McFayden for a passage of play that ended with Azeem Abdulai’s volley being blocked.

At the other end, keeper Hughes palmed away Dillon De Silva’s drive after a swift QPR counter-attack.

Joe Thomas

Swansea were left frustrated as Thomas had the ball in the net only for the offside flag to cut short the celebrations.

Rangers began to settle, with Hamzad Kargbo forcing Hughes to make a swift intervention before the Swans keeper punched away a Charlie Owens’ free-kick. 

And the R’s were to take the lead just before the half-hour mark. De Silva’s inviting cross found Dougui in the six-yard box, who calmly slotted the ball home for the opener. 

Swansea looked to respond, Thomas picking out Ruben Davies after a great run down the left, but the striker’s shot was well blocked and the visitors trailed at the interval.

Lincol McFayden

Instead, the R’s doubled their lead immediately after the break, Harrack made sure to fend off his marker to drill a low shot past Hughes after capitalising on a defensive mishap. 

But Swansea were handed a way back into the game as Corey Hurford was brought down in the box, and skipper Rushesha converted from the spot.

And when the hosts saw Jude-Boyd dismissed on the hour mark following a cynical shirt pull Swansea’s hopes were raised further. 

Thomas and Hurford saw shots blocked in quick succession, but Swansea’s numerical advantage was wiped out when the former’s foul on the keeper earned him a second yellow card. 

Substitute Morgan went closest to the equaliser after breaking free down the right, firing straight into the hands of Matteo Salamon in the QPR goal.

And instead the home side countered to seal the win as Peddar cleverly beat two defenders to fire home.

Queens Park Rangers Under-21s: Matteo Salamon, Arkell Jude-Boyd, Kayden Harrack, Deon Woodman, Henry Hawkins, Charlie Owens, Dillon De Silva, Alex Aoraha, Hamzad Kargbo, Rafferty Pedder, Adam Dougui. 

Unused subs: Ivo Rossi, Harry Cant, Stan Flaherty.

Swansea City Under-21s: Ben Hughes, Joe Thomas, Kian Jenkins, Azeem Abdulai, Kai Ludbigsen, Tivonge Rushesha (captain) (Harry Jones 65’), Corey Hurford, Sam Leverett, Ruben Davies (Iwan Morgan 65’), Josh Thomas, Lincoln McFayden. 

Unused subs: Remy Mitchell, Dan Watts.