QPR No2 Mark Bowen has revealed how a confrontation with travelling fans brought the club together.
The Rs are closing in on Premier League safety after victory over Swansea City.
But Bowen recalls an incident at Euston train station after defeat to Bolton Wanderers, revealing in the London Evening Standard: “We were walking with the players off the platform, naturally disappointed, when there was some chanting behind us,” he says. “Obviously, the fans who went to the game realised the players were up ahead of them.
“A few things were shouted, not very complimentary things, and we turned to see around 100 fans. Three or four were shouting, ‘It ain’t good enough’, and stuff I couldn’t repeat.
“We were trying to explain things to them — and they were prepared to listen. The other 95 or so came over, calmed them down and we were all saying sorry to each other! Suddenly there was this feeling about us all in it together, fans, players and management.
“Squad and management got on the coach from the station to go back to the training ground and the first thing I said to Mark was: ‘That’s fantastic’. He gave me a strange look as though to say: ‘What’s fantastic about getting abuse thrown in my face?’ I said: ‘We’ve won one of the last 10 Premier League games and have got to the stage where out of 100 fans, I think two were a bit out of order. The other 98 were prepared to listen and help put right the couple who were over the top. I don’t think too many clubs in the country, after the last 10 games would have so few complaining heatedly.
“Since then, of course, we’ve gone on to beat Liverpool and Arsenal and the fans have given their team brilliant backing. And I remember the first thing Mark said back in his office after that was: ‘Jeez, if we can get this going, give these fans a bit of success over the next few years, we’ll have some fun here. It’s a great place, they’re crying out for it’.”