McLean revels in sound of silence

Peterborough 1 QPR 0
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The Independent Football

The club that likes to shed managers beat the club that really likes to shed managers. Jim Gannon, the third man to take charge of Peterborough this season, enjoyed a winning debut at the expense of Queens Park Rangers, who have had 10 different men in charge since November 2007.

Gannon was brought in to clear up the mess made by Mark Cooper's sacking at the end of last month, with the owner, Darragh MacAnthony, admitting it had been a mistake to elevate a man all the way from Kettering in the Conference to replace Darren Ferguson.

The new man made a bold statement with a three-man defence and was rewarded within nine minutes with what turned out to be the winning goal, with captain George Boyd showing composure in the box to bamboozle a challenger and set up Aaron McLean.

Peterborough remain at the foot of the Championship table however and are so unused to winning that they had to hang on desperately at the end even though Rangers by then had only nine men, with first Mikele Leigertwood and then Peter Ramage shown red cards for fouls on Tommy Rowe.

"The clean sheet was the priority," Gannon said. "We talked about how strong we are in the second half and how poor QPR are in the second half – statistically they are the worst in the Championship. We got the goal so it was a satisfying first half. We could have seen the game out more handsomely but overall I was pleased."

Mick Harford is Rangers' third manager of the campaign, with first Jim Magilton and then Paul Hart having been shown the door by Flavio Briatore, the co-owner. This is Harford's second attempt bringing success to Loftus Road but this was a third successive defeat without even a goal. Rangers have now accumulated 19 games without a clean sheet either.

At least he had a ready explanation on this occasion, if not quite an excuse, but the former Luton manager refused to speak afterwards, as did his entire staff.