Macauley Bonne, a Zimbabwe international footballer, says he is pleased to score after a priceless goal on his Queens Park Rangers debut on Saturday on his return to the English Championship.
His score, just hours after completing his transfer from Charlton Athletic’s League One side, handed his side a share of the spoils at the weekend against Sheffield Wednesday.
Bonne, who was signed on Friday, was moved the next day into the side as a second half replacement.
After he came off the bench to score a late header which won his team a 1-1 draw at Hillsborough, the 24-year-old Zimbabwean became an instant hit with the club’s fans on social media.
“Enjoyed joining # QPR, just as my debut score is,” Bonne tweeted. “Thanks a lot for all the messages of welcome.
Amazing history, amazing team and fans put it together!
To the future here! In the 54th minute, QPR fell behind when central defender Yoann Barbet scored an own goal.
Bonne came in as Tom Carroll’s 64th minute substitute and made an instant impact with his goal of gaining a late point for QPR with one victory, two draws and a loss in the four games they have played so far in the second tier league of England.
As QPR looked to walk away from Sheffield empty handed, Bonne headed in a cross by Frenchman Yoann Barbet, from the left, deep into stoppage time.
“I was really happy with Macauley,” QPR director Mark Warburton told the club ‘s website.
He’ll also be supporting Lyndon (Dykes), who worked so hard.
“Lyndon needed someone to run in behind him, and Macauley is match ready, he came on and looked dangerous and challenging.” Warburton said the point was the least deserved by his players.
“We played some good football, I thought. We were organised in the first half and looked dangerous. The set-pieces really worked well,’ he said.
“We were unlucky to hit the post and we looked like a good team.
“They got behind us once, for the goal, and that gave them something to hang on to. But we got behind them five, six or seven times and we never stopped playing.
“I thought we thoroughly deserved the equaliser. That was the least we should have got out of the game.
“We reacted really well to going behind and there were some big performances —Rob Dickie was excellent and, all over the park, we had players who stood up in the conditions.
“The wind and rain made it difficult, but I thought we looked a good side for long periods of that game.
“As I said, I thought we looked a good team in the second half, their goal aside.
“You need to get your rewards. It came late — but we thoroughly deserved to get the equaliser.”
Bonne is still yet to make his full senior debut for Zimbabwe.
In the upcoming 2021 AFCON and 2022 World Cup campaigns, however, he is expected to play a part.
He’s one player who’s been monitoring the Warriors coach, Zdravko Logarusic.
For an international friendly match against Malawi scheduled for Blantyre on Sunday, Logarusic is expected to name his Zimbabwe team.
The previous national team call-ups were skipped by Bonne because he did not have a valid Zimbabwean passport.
But, the issue has since been fixed.
It is doubtful he will make this weekend the squad for the international friendly against Malawi as he still needs to settle at QPR in the new climate.
He transferred from the relegated Charlton Athletic of the Championship, meaning he would stay closer to the Premiership.
It is also known that ZIFA sent an invitation to Bonne through his old Charlton club before the switch on Friday and made frenzied attempts to contact the new club.
Since arriving on a three-year deal, the striker was unveiled by QPR on Friday.
It is estimated that the deal will net Charlton £ 2 million. Lee Bowyer, Charlton ‘s boss, said: “QPR came in and made an offer we couldn’t decline.”
Last season, he did well for us and got 11 goals, but looking at the wider picture, it is the right price for us and the right contract.
We brought Macauley, we charged £ 200,000 just over a year ago, and it really was more of a project. He did well and he improved and we received an offer that was the club’s right offer.
In the summer of 2019, he joined the Addicks and scored 11 goals in 33 Championship appearances. After Charlton Athletic were relegated, Bonne was keen to remain in the English second-tier league.