QPR will be looking to continue their excellent early season form when they face Ipswich at Portman Road on Tuesday evening. Both sides have enjoyed strong starts to the campaign and are unbeaten in the league.
Buoyed by their fantastic 3-0 victory over struggling Middlesbrough, QPR should be full of confidence going into the match this evening. In the second half the R’s produced a magical 15 minute spell similar to the one at Sheffield United and destroyed a lacklustre Boro team.
They will need that new-found confidence instilled by Warnock if they are to win because Ipswich have been a bogey team in recent years. Rangers’ last victory was in 2005, since then QPR have lost six and drawn three. So it’s fair to say the R’s owe them somewhat.
This time last year Ipswich had made a terrible start to the season and Roy Keane couldn’t buy a win from anywhere. Incredibly it took them 15 games to win their first league game and that was against Nigel Clough’s Derby on October 31. Make of that what you will.
This season couldn’t be more different. Even after the loss of club captain Jon Walters to Stoke, Ipswich have won three out of five in the league while drawing the other two and find themselves in third position, two points off the automatic places. In the League Cup they have beaten Exeter and Crewe and look forward to an away tie at Millwall.
QPR 3 (Helguson pen, Ephraim, Mackie)
Team: Paddy Kenny, Bradley Orr (Peter Ramage), Kaspars Gorkss, Matthew Connolly, Clint Hill, Sean Derry Alejandro Faurlin, Adel Taarabt (Ákos Buzsáky), Hogan Ephraim, Jamie Mackie (Tommy Smith), Heider Helguson.
Ipswich Town 0
Team: Marton Fulop, Gareth McAuley, Darren O’Dea (Mark Kennedy), Jaime Peters, Tommy Smith, Grant Leadbitter, David Norris, Carlos Edwards, Luke Hyam, Jason Scotland (David Healy), Tamás Priskin (Connor Wickham).
Ipswich Town Team News:
Darren O’Dea is a doubt and is rated 50/50 to play this evening after suffering a knee injury. Fellow injury victim Alan Quinn is still out. Quinn who has been injured since the summer with a groin injury is unavailable until next month.
Andros Townsend could return to the starting XI after serving his suspension. Townsend was sent off against Crystal Palace for violent conduct with what seemed to be a vicious karate kick to the chest of Julian Speroni.
Peters – McAuley – Smith – Delaney
Edwards – Norris – Leadbitter – Townsend
Scotland – Priskin
Player to watch: Jason Scotland
Jason Scotland has been identified by DanielQPR as the player to watch ahead of tonight’s match against Ipswich Town.
To read the One to Watch Kenny
Walker – Connolly – Gorkss – Hill
Faurlín – Derry
Mackie – Taarabt (c) – Ephraim
Player to watch: Heidar Helguson
At the moment you could pick any of the current QPR players as the one to watch and still make a strong case. But I`ve decided to go with Heider Helguson – a player who I have criticised in the past but I’m more than happy to give credit where it’s due.
Since returning from Watford following brief loan spell, Helguson was given a second chance by Neil Warnock to impress in pre-season and fight for his QPR career.
Warnock’s faith in Helguson hasn’t gone un-rewarded. The Iceman has scored 3 goals this season but his all round game is something that is worth mentioning. Helguson’s awareness of others and his aerial ability make him the perfect target man in the 4-2-3-1 system.
He isn’t the tallest player but his leap is impressive and he wins the majority of headers against much taller centre backs. Yes his finishing can be infuriating especially when he misses from six-yards but at the moment he is an important cog in the QPR machine.
Without his hold up play the free-flowing attacking football would cease to exist as it is Heider who wins the initial ball brings it down and lays it off to Adel, Ali or Hogan and from there the attacks begin.
On his day there isn’t many better than Heider Helguson in the Championship.
Match Facts & Stats
Queens Park Rangers: L W W D W
Ipswich Town: D W W W D
HEAD 2 HEAD
Queens Park Rangers: 21
Ipswich Town: 18
LAST TIME OUT
Coca Cola Championship – 9- 2 -10
QPR 1 (Simpson)
Ipswich Town 2 (Norris, Murphy)
Team: Carl Ikeme, Damion Stewart, Matthew Connolly, Matt Hill, Kaspars Gorkss, Nigel Quashie (Ákos Buzsáky), Hogan Ephraim (Adel Taarabt), Alejandro Faurlin, Lee Cook, Marcus Bent (Rowan Vine), Jay Simpson.
Referee: Keith Stroud (Hampshire)
Assistants: I Cooper & D Margetts
Fourth Official: M Stewart
Card-happy Keith Stroud is the match official for the game on Tuesday evening and has officiated two games this season. His last game was Yeovil`s 2-1 victory over Leyton Orient.
Last season Stroud issued 108 yellow cards and 10 Red in only 27 games.