Former Barnsley star Josh Scowen got the only goal as they lost 1-0 at Queens Park Rangers, despite playing against ten men for the last 20 minutes.
The Reds were the better side in the first half but Scowen – one of Barnsley's 2016 promotion heroes who moved to QPR last summer – opened the scoring early in the second after with a superb strike.
Home substitute Ryan Manning was sent off after 71 minutes but the visitors could not find the equaliser and slipped down two places to 21st. They have now won just one of 16 games in all competitions and are one point above the relegation places.
Head coach Paul Heckingbottom – whose new contract was announced the previous day – made four changes to the side that lost to Fulham a week previously.
The big news was that Nick Townsend started in goal in place of Adam Davies, whose run of 123 consecutive starts ended after several recent errors.
New centre-back signing Matt Mills made his debut in place of Matty Pearson while Joe Williams returned to the side following suspension, in place of Stevie Mallan, and Daniel Pinillos made his full debut in place of Dimitri Cavare who served a one-game ban after his red card against Fulham.
Barnsley began well with Mills hooking over after Kieffer Moore headed down a free-kick by Adam Hammill while two excellent runs from George Moncur led to both him and Moore failing to test home goalkeeper Alex Smithies with weak low efforts from the edge of the box.
Gary Gardner volleyed over a cross by new captain Andy Yiadom from just inside the box then, at the other end, QPR's first chance fell to James Perch who headed a Luke Freeman corner onto the roof of the net.
Hammill then nearly netted his first goal in 50 league matches when some good movement saw him receive a Pinillos throw-in on the left corner of the box then his powerful volley was clawed out of the top left corner by Smithies.
The Reds went into the half-time break having been the better side but struggling again to get the goal.
They were behind four minutes into the second half when Scowen collected the ball 20 yards out and curled an excellent shot into the top right corner for his first Hoops goal, which he refused to celebrate as a mark of respect to Barnsley.
Tom Bradshaw had a fine chance to level on 57 minutes when he received the ball from Moncur deep in the home box and shot on the turn but it was a weak low effort that was easily saved by Smithies.
Matt Smith almost made it 2-0 but headed wide from close range after a Freeman free-kick was nodded on towards him in the 62nd minute.
Heckingbottom then brought debutant Oliver McBurnie and Ryan Hedges off the bench for Moore and Hammill midway through the second half.
Manning came on at the same time but was sent off four minutes later after sliding in late on Mills.
Heckingbottom then brought on debutant Connor Mahoney who went on the right wing in a 3-5-2 formation with Hedges on the left and Yiadom joining Mills and Liam Lindsay as the back three.
Yiadom had to make two vital blocks in his box then Townsend produced an excellent one-on-one save after Conor Washington was put clean through on goal by a throw-in.
Osayi-Samuel also went clean through on the right but was denied by a combination of Townsend and Yiadom.
At the other end, Moncur had a 15-yard effort deflected over the bar following good hold-up play by McBurnie but the Reds never really came close to scoring past the ten men.
16:51pm: FULL-TIMEL QPR 1, Barnsley 0. The Reds played against ten men for 20 minutes but their former player Josh Scowen's excellent strike settled it
16:50pm: We have had the allocated four minutes of added time
16:49pm: 90+2 Osayi-Samuel goes clean through on the right but is denied by a combination of Townsend and Yiadom
16:46pm: 90 Washington is now coming off with left-back Jake Bidwell replacing him
16:45pm: 88 Conor Washington is put clear through on goal by a throw-in and Townsend comes out to make a good save.
16:44pm: 87 Barnsley close to levelling as McBurnie holds the ball up well I the home box then passes it back to Moncur whose 15-yard shot is deflected over the bar
16:41pm: There are just over five minutes of normal time remaining. Barnsley have been playing with ten men for 15 minutes but it is QPR who have looked more threatening in that time . 1-0 to the hosts
16:40pm: To recap the formation: it's 3-5-2 with Mahoney on the right wing and Hedges on the left
16:40pm: 83 Yiadom again blocks after Washington has a good chance in the box following a missed opportunity to counter-attack for the away side
16:38pm: 82 Home substitute Osayi-Samuel has a shot from 15 yards deflected behind off Yiadom for a corner
16:38pm: Correction: It was Matt Smith not Washington who was taken off last for the hosts
16:38pm: 81 Nick Townsend makes his most important contribution of the match when he comes out to claim the ball when Washington looked set to head it in,
16:36pm: 80 Connor Mahoney comes on for his debut for Daniel Pinillos. It looks as though the Reds have gone to three at the back with Yiadom, Mills and Lindsay
16:35pm: QPR are bringing on winger Bright Osayi-Samuel for striker Conor Washington to compensate for the red card. Still 1-0 to the hosts
16:34pm: Good bulldozing run from McBurnie, he then slipped in Hedges on the left of the box but the ball did not quite run properly for him and went out of play
16:28pm: The Irish winger was on the pitch for roughly four minutes before crunching into a late challenge on Mills right in front of the dugouts
16:27pm: RED CARD Ryan Manning with a terrible challenge
16:24pm: That's a surprise as Moore had won the ball well at times and Hammill has had one of his best games for some time
16:24pm: Hammill and Moore are both coming off. QPR have brought Ryan Manning on for Jordan Cousins.
16:23pm: 67 Oliver McBurnie and his friend from their time at Swansea Ryan Hedges are coming on
16:19pm: 62 Matt Smith has a great chance to double the QPR lead but he heads wide from close range after a free-kick causes chaos in the Reds box
16:18pm: Paul Heckingbottom will surely be thinking about substitutions with new boys McBurnie and Mahoney among the options
16:17pm: The Reds have responded pretty well to going 1-0 down and still look the more positive side overall.
16:16pm: That has been the difference today, Barnsley have had more shots on goal but they have all been tame efforts that lacked the power and ferocity of Scowen's goal into the top right corner
16:14pm: 57 Decent chance for a leveller as Bradshaw receives the ball from Moncur deep in the home box and shoots on the turn but it is a weak effort that is easily saved by Smithies
16:07pm: That's a real hammer blow for the Reds who have been the better team for the first half. They will now have to score twice in a game for the first time in 15 to win here
16:05pm: It was a wonderful strike into the top right corner from just outside the box
16:05pm: It's the former Barnsley player's first goal for his new club
16:04pm: QPR 1, Barnsley 0. Josh Scowen
16:03pm: Today's attendance is 12,413 with 737 Barnsley fans
16:03pm: The second half is underway
16:00pm: The players are coming back out for the second half at Loftus Road
15:46pm: HALF-TIME: QPR 0, Barnsley 0. The Reds on top so far
15:45pm: 44 Hammill so close to his first goal in 50 league games after running onto a clever throw and volley from the left side of the box which Smithes claws out of the top left corner
15:43pm: Adam Hammill has put some good crosses in so far. One was just cleared really well by Nedum Onuoha with Tom Bradshaw lurking ready to head in from close range
15:41pm: Just a few minutes to go here until half-time. It's still 0-0 but Barnsley have been the better side. QPR have had one header onto the roof of the net but the visitors have been more threatening
15:38pm: 37 Adam Hammill's free-kick and Kieffer Moore's following cross are both easily dealt with by the home defence
15:34pm: 34 Nick Townsend gets a rare touch as he dives on a loose ball in the box.
15:33pm: 33 Gary Gardner is booked after tripping Cousins in the centre circle
15:32pm: 32 James Perch heads a Luke Freeman corner onto the roof of the net. 0-0 but QPR are growing into this game after the visitors started on top
15:30pm: 29 good cross from home centre-back Joel Lynch, which leaves Townsend moving back and forwards before deciding not to come for it and it whizzes past a home player at the back post
15:26pm: Barnsley are the only side creating real chances here but they are yet to really threaten the home goal
15:25pm: 25 Andy Yiadom swings in a cross from the right and Gary Gardner meets it on the volley just inside the box but sends it over the bar
15:25pm: 25 We're more than midway through the first half here. Nick Townsend has had nothing of not to do so far on his return to the side after more than two years.
15:24pm: Barnsley's neighbours Sheffield Wednesday aren't helping the Reds out so far, 2-0 down at home to Barnsley's fellow relegation-battlers Birmingham
15:21pm: It's still 0-0 though and the hosts seem to be getting a bit stronger in the last few minutes
15:20pm: 20 minutes gone so far here. Barnsley have been the better team and have created all the chances
15:19pm: 18 Luke Freeman floats in the free-kick but Yiadom heads it away with great timing
15:17pm: 18 A bit of a wild tackle by Williams but he avoids a ninth booking of the season ,.
15:16pm: QPR's left-winger Jordan Cousins is moving inside a lot and being picked up by the Reds midfield, so far, which means there is plenty of space on the right for the likes of Moncur and Yiadom to run into
15:12pm: 11 Another chance for Barnsley after another great run up the pitch on the ball by Moncur, who has started really well. He lays the ball off to Moore on the left of the box but his shot is straight at Smithies
15:09pm: Set pieces have been Barnsley's only route to goal in recent weeks and, after dropping Stevie Mallan who assisted all their goals in the last month, Heckingbottom will be hoping Hammill can keep up those standards
15:07pm: 7 Matt Mills almost scores on his debut but hooks over from close range after Moore heads down a Hammill free-kick. Good start by the Reds. 0-0
15:05pm: 5 George Moncur has the first shot on goal of the game as he wins the ball just in the QPR half, drives forwards 20 yards and has a low 20-yard effort which is easily saved by Alex Smithies
15:05pm: Four minutes in and not much has happened so far. Barnsley have started fairly brightly
15:02pm: Paul Heckingbottom's name is also immediately chanted after he signed his new deal yesterday
15:01pm: The Reds fans behind Nick Townsend are already very loud, chanting 'we love you Barnsley, we do'
15:00pm: The teams are out and the match is about to start
14:55pm: Oliver McBurnie is also on the bench as he could make his long-awaited Reds debut today. Jason McCarthy and Brad Potts are sitting just in front of the press box after being left out of the squad
14:51pm: Daniel Pinillos and Matt Mills will also be under scrutiny as they make their full debuts,. Connor Mahoney is on the bench while fellow new signing Christoph Knasmullner is not involved today
14:50pm: All eyes will be on Nick Townsend's performance today as he plays for Barnsley for the first time since October 2015 – a loss at Scunthorpe in which he made a crucial error
14:27pm: This is the first game in a big month for the Reds. After travelling to QPR, Barnsley host another bottom half side in local rivals Sheffield Wednesday a week later then complete February with games against Burton and Birmingham. The game at fellow strugglers Hull City has been postponed from February 17 as the Tigers will be in FA Cup action that weekend.
14:23pm: When the sides met at Oakwell earlier this season, it was a low-quality game in which Harvey Barnes’ impressive long-range strike put the Reds ahead but Luke Freeman levelled in the 87th minute. Paul Heckingbottom was disappointed with his side’s performance despite almost winning.
14:20pm: The Reds have won just one of the last nine meetings at either stadium, at home in August last season, with QPR winning seven of those games. Josh Scowen scored the winner against the Hoops at Oakwell in 2016 but is now with the London club, having played 27 of their 29 league games this season.
14:18pm: Barnsley’s only win at the London club came 68 years ago in January 1950, when they triumphed 5-0 on their second visit there. Their next 24 matches at Loftus Road have brought three draws and 21 defeats including losses in their ten most recent visits which have seen them score four goals and concede 25.
14:11pm: QPR have spent less than £1million this season – considerably less than Barnsley – as they attempt to scale back after shelling out around £150million in the previous six campaigns in which they bounced from the Championship to Premier League and back, eventually incurring a world record £40million fine for breaching financial fair play regulations.
14:11pm: Barnsley are six points and two positions below Ian Holloway’s 17th-placed QPR, who have won just three of their last 15 matches. After winning their first three home league games of the season, QPR have won just three of the last 11 at Loftus Road with four draws and four defeats.
14:10pm: Andy Yiadom is understood to be captain today and possibly for the rest of the season, even if Adam Davies returns
14:07pm: The big news is that Nick Townsend replaces Adam Davies in goal. New signing Matt Mills makes his debut in place of Matty Pearson. Joe Williams also returns to the side following suspension, in place of Stevie Mallan, while Daniel Pinillos makes his full debut in place of Dimitri Cavare who serves a one-game ban.
14:07pm: QPR team: Smithies, Onuoha, Lynch, Robinson; Wszolek, Freeman, Scowen, Cousins, Perch; Washington, Smith. Subs: Ingram, Bidwell, Manning, Baptiste, Eze, Osayi-Samuel, Oteh.
14:02pm: The big news is that Nick Townsend replaces Adam Davies in goal. New signing Matt Mills makes his debut in place of Matty Pearson. Joe Williams also returns to the side following suspension, in place of Stevie Mallan, while Daniel Pinillos makes his full debut in place of Dimitri Cavare who serves a one-game ban.
14:01pm: Barnsley: Townsend; Yiadom, Mills, Lindsay, Pinillos; Moncur, Williams, Gardner, Hammill; Moore, Bradshaw. Subs: Davies, McBurnie, Mahoney, Hedges, Thiam, Pearson, Mallan.
13:47pm: Barnsley have scored just six goals in their last 13 league matches. The only players who have scored in their last six league games have been defenders Ethan Pinnock, Dimitri Cavare and Liam Lindsay. Pinnock is injured and Cavare suspended so Lindsay is likely to be the only Red playing today who has scored for the club in the Championship in 2018.
13:39pm: Barnsley could slip into the relegation zone today for the first time since August as they are just one point above it in 19th position. The Reds have not been in the bottom three since losing their first two league games of the season. Assistant manager Jamie Clapham admitted in the pre-match press conference that it is ‘very tight’ near the bottom, as just three points separate the bottom six.
13:32pm: It was a busy final week of the transfer window at Oakwell as the Reds sold captain Angus MacDonald to Hull City and brought in Connor Mahoney, Christoph Knasmullner, Oliver McBurnie and Matt Mills – following the signings of Kieffer Moore and Daniel Pinillos earlier in the month. All four of players who came in in the last week are available to play today.
13:27pm: Good afternoon and welcome to the Chronicle's coverage of Barnsley's game at Queens Park Rangers
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