It had been a long wait for Queens Park Rangers supporters. They hadn't seen their team in the top flight since 1996 and finally made their way back up for this season, but maybe they wish the wait had been a little longer after the way their opening match went. In front of a lively crowd at Loftus Road, QPR were destroyed by a sharp Bolton Wanderers side, 4-0, and sent their supporters home wondering if their side will still be in the Premier League one year from now.
Things actually didn't get off to a bad start for the Hoops. They were never looked overly dangerous going forward, but they were at least competent at the back and did well to close down space in the midfield. Just before halftime though, things began to go bad. Gary Cahill did the honors in first half injury time with a beautiful strike from 20 yards. The defender looked like he made his living so far up the pitch, squaring to goal and curling a shot right into the upper corner for the first goal of the match.
The second half was an exhibition in quality football from Bolton though. They were calm in the midfield as new signing Nigel Reo-Coker did a fantastic job handling all of the dirty work, allowing the rest of the midfield to get forward and create. That paid off in the 67th minute when a good cross from the left found the foot of Daniel Gabbidon before finding its way over the goal line. No Bolton got player got credit on the own goal, but it was a quality build up that earned them a goal they most definitely deserved.
Just three minutes later, Bolton added to their lead. Ivan Klasnic found a bit of room and let a shot go. It was well struck, but would have probably been saved if it didn't take a deflection on the way to goal. It did take a deflection though and found the back of the net to stretch the Bolton lead to 3-0.
Trailing 3-0, QPR were in shambles. It only got worse when their defense broke down and allowed Klasnic to play Muamba in alone on goal. The Belgian cooly finished and Bolton were embarrassing QPR in their Premier League debut.
The Hoops were dependent on Adel Taarabt for much of their attack last year, but he was shackled by the Bolton defense on this day, once again raising the question if he can cut it at the Premier League level. Without some investment from owners who like to cry poor, QPR may be heading right back down and today's season opener did nothing to calm those fears.
Meanwhile, Bolton looked sharp and Reo-Coker looked to be a very good signing. With Stuart Holden getting closer to a return, Bolton's side should only get stronger as Owen Coyle continues to work his magic. With three points in the bag and four goals in, Bolton are top of the Premier League table for one day at least