Alex Smithies makes his name with penalty heroics

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Alex Smithies has saved seven of the last 10 spot-kicks faced. PICTURE: ACTION IMAGES

Nick Skoric
Nick Skoric

By Nick Skoric

As a kid Alex Smithies idolised David Seaman and he is now making a name all for himself with his penalty heroics.

The QPR stopper has saved seven of the last 10 spot-kicks faced since taking charge between the sticks for the Hoops.

His latest came in the 1-1 draw with Fulham as Smithies pulled off a superb fingertip save to deny Chris Martin.

Funnily enough, Smithies is not too bad from 12 yards out. The 26-year-old scored the winning goal in Huddersfield’s League One play-off final victory over Sheffield United in 2012.

Holloway could not ask for more from his keeper this season so much so that there are rumours Aston Villa have put in a bid of £4million but that figure would not have impressed the QPR board.

“This is the best group of goalies I have ever had. Smithies is playing out of his skin as he has Matt [Ingram] breathing down his neck. This is great for me and the club to have such great keepers in the squad. You can just see in training that there is a great atmosphere and they push each other to up their game which is exactly what Smithies has shown in his performances this season,” said Holloway.

A home win over Burton this Saturday is expected against a side sitting in the bottom three of the Championship.

Moreover, with a visit to Newcastle next Wednesday, the three points are sorely needed to keep the momentum going.

Meanwhile, Chery has finally got his desired move to China where the young Dutchman hopes to fill his pockets.

Holloway will be sad to lose such a talented player from his team but the creative midfielder had his head turned and there was little left to do but cash in on the deal.

Players really should think twice before kissing the club badge these days.

The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and unless specifically stated are not necessarily those of Hammersmith & Fulham Council.

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