Crowd invasion mars Rangers fightback

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The Independent Online

Chelsea were humbled 3-1 by the Second Division club Queen's Park Rangers on Saturday, in a friendly that ended with both sets of supporters invading the pitch afterwards. Understandably, QPR's fans were overjoyed at the result, and showed it in no uncertain fashion when some dropped their trousers in front of the away supporters.

A stuttering performance embarrassed the Premiership side, and was a stark reminder of their difficulties in away matches, which proved to be their downfall last season. Watched by a crowd of 11,988, Chelsea took the lead through Jesper Gronkjaer in the 10th minute, before the home side gained control.

The Manchester City defender Steve Howey livened up a run-of-the-mill friendly against Tranmere by accidentally knocking out the referee. Howey was in the middle of a tussle with Tranmere striker Seyni N'Diaye when he caught the referee, Mick Jones, with a flailing arm. Jones was knocked out cold by the strike and had to be treated for concussion and a swollen eye. Howey was stunned by the incident and did not realise what had happened.

"I didn't think I had connected. I thought he was joking when I saw him on the floor because he was shaking," Howey said. Otherwise, the game proved to be largely uneventful with Stuart Barlow's goal after 48 minutes sealing a 1-0 win for Tranmere.

The strikers Alan Smith and Robbie Keane both scored twice as Leeds registered their second successive 6-0 victory on their pre-season tour of Sweden. Despite dominating for much of the first half against Kungsbacka, David O'Leary's side had only one goal to show for their efforts – a Smith penalty awarded for a foul on Harry Kewell. The Australian midfielder doubled the lead just after half-time before Jason Wilcox added a third. Keane then scored his brace either side of Smith's second goal.

O'Leary started with the same side which had won their first match in Sweden but made a number of changes in the second half, with only the England pair Smith and the goalkeeper, Nigel Martyn, playing the full 90 minutes.

The Bolton manager, Sam Allardyce, has switched his striker search to Marseilles' powerful and controversial Cyrille Pouget. Allardyce has flown in Pouget, a free agent, for a short trial and he will play against Halifax tomorrow night as the Wanderers manager looks to recruit new faces.

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