Queen's Park Rangers 3 Bristol City 0: Briatore's hands-on role at QPR sets the standard for Gillett and Hicks

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The Independent Online

Flavio Briatore, head of the Renault Formula One team, thrust his fists triumphantly into the air as the Queen's Park Rangers' midfielder Akos Buzsaky scored the last goal. At the final whistle and from his position in the directors' box, Briatore, a shareholder in the west London club, gave QPR's victorious players the "thumbs-up" as they came off the pitch below him after this confident and comprehensive win over high-flying Bristol City.

Two goals from Ghanaian striker Patrick Agyemang and a fine strike from the Hungarian Buzsaky, ensured victory for the team managed by the Italian Luigi de Canio.

With the Formula One season almost upon us, this is likely to be one of the last occasions we see Briatore at Loftus Road. But with nine signings in the January transfer window, funded by cash pumped into the club by himself, among others, the Italian is unlikely to be discussing discontent and unrest amongst supporters when he next meets fellow shareholders Bernie Ecclestone, the Formula One ringmaster, and steel magnate Lakshmi Mittal.

All seems well at the club dubbed "the richest in the world". Messrs Gillett and Hicks, take note.

"Flav is here quite a lot and makes the games," said the QPR striker Rowan Vine, who played a prominent role. "He is fairly hands-on and comes into the changing rooms to wish us luck before games. I am not sure if he is a massive football fan. But he came in after the game too, to say congratulations."

QPR's first goal came on 18 minutes. Vine controlled a lofted ball on his chest before playing a clever pass into the path of Agyemang, who raced through before scoring low under Adriano Basso. Agyemang added a second, a tap-in, on 33 minutes to rock Bristol City.

The half-time words of the manager, Gary Johnson, did little to stem the tide and it was Buzsaky who sealed the win in the second half with a stunning shot from outside the penalty area. It left Johnson, whose side dropped to third in the division, in reflective mood. "We come back from adversity so well at the club because it means so much to us," he said.

Given QPR's uneven start to the season, a burst for the Championship play-offs may seem a little too much to ask. Vine added: "We need to go on a big run if we want to get into the play-offs. This isn't like the Premier League where it is not really possible. But it is still a massive ask for us."

Goals: Agyemang (18) 1-0; Agyemang (33) 2-0; Buzsaky (63) 3-0.

Queen's Park Rangers (4-4-2): Camp; Mancienne, Stewart, Rehman (Connolly, 76), Delaney; Buzsaky, Rowlands, Mahon, Ephraim (Lee, 75); Vine (Leigertwood, 89), Agyemang. Substitutes not used: Crowther (gk), Blackstock.

Bristol City (4-4-2): Basso; Orr, Vasko (Fontaine 46), McCombe, McAllister; Carle (Sproule 66), Elliott, Johnson (Noble 80), McIndoe; Byfield, Adebola. Substitutes not used: Weale, Skuse.

Referee: D Deadman (Cambridgeshire).

Booked: Queen's Park Rangers Rowlands, Vine; Bristol City Adebola, Fontaine.

Man of the match: Vine

Attendance: 16,502.

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