Wednesday’s hopes of going into the international break on the back of a victory were sunk by a 96th minute QPR equaliser at a rain-lashed Hillsborough this afternoon.
Leading 1-0, we were down to 10 men and had already played the allotted five minutes of added time when Rangers struck with a header from Macauley Bonne to leave our deficit at the foot of the table at minus seven points, rather than minus five.
After failing to get a shot on target in a poor first-half display, we began the second period in better shape and took the lead on 54 minutes. Barry Bannan fed Adam Reach down the left and, when his low cross came in, defender Yoann Barbet could only turn the ball into his own net, with Josh Windass waiting to pounce.
We continued to press forward during this spell and Reach forced a diving safe from Seny Dieng with a fierce first-time volley from inside the box after being picked out by Kadeem Harris.
The visitors gradually got a foothold back in the game without posing too many threats on Cameron Dawson’s goal and, with three minutes of normal time remaining, we almost made it 2-0 when ex-QPR man Massimo Luongo turned and shot inside the box but saw his effort smash against the bar.
Having used all three subs, we then went down to 10 men soon afterwards when man-of-the-match Tom Lees was forced off with a thigh injury and, with the five added minutes played out, Rangers struck with that late, late sickener.
Dominic Iorfa (hamstring) and Izzy Brown (knee) were both missing from the starting line-up, and we suffered another blow almost from the kick off when young defender Liam Shaw had to be helped from the field with an ankle problem following a midfield challenge.
And in an instantly forgettable first 45 minutes, it took more than half an hour for either side to create a real effort on goal, Rangers almost taking the lead when Geoff Cameron’s flick from a corner came back off the inside of a post and into Dawson’s hands.
Dawson, Shaw (Palmer 3, Odubajo 46), Lees, Van Aken, Harris, Reach, Bannan, Dele-Bashiru (Pelupessy 69), Luongo, Paterson, Windass. Unused subs: Wildsmith, Waldock, Kachunga, Rhodes.