RANGERS are looking to give their survival hopes that crucial shot in the arm as they face Sheffield Wednesday side still entrenched in the relegation fight.
The Owls had their hopes of an initial top half finish dashed as Alan Irvine’s positive start soon turned sour with only isolated home victories bolstering their survival hopes.
The fortunate thing for Wednesday is that they seem to be able to accrue the odd win while others scrimp and battle for the odd points in the battle for survival.
QPR meanwhile showed their incredible team spirit to battle back from two goals down at Irvine’s old side – Preston North End – with Adel Taarabt playing a starring role behind the front-man.
A home win over Wednesday would go a long way to securing QPR’s Championship status but against an Owls side fighting for their lives it is destined to prove a tough encounter.
Preston North End 2 (Jones 37, Davidson 56pen)
QPR 2 (Ramage 57, Priskin 66)
Team: Carl Ikeme, Peter Ramage, Kaspars Gork?s, Damion Stewart, Matt Hill, Mikele Leigertwood, Alejandro Damián Faurlín, Tamás Priskin, Adel Taarabt (Ákos Buzsáky 90), Hogan Ephraim, Antonio German (Rowan Vine 46)
Coventry City 1 (Wood 70)
Sheffield Wednesday 1 (Varney 67)
Team: Lee Grant, Darren Purse, Tommy Spurr, Eddie Nolan, Lee Beevers, Darren Potter, Luke Varney, Tom Soares (Michael Gray 74), James O’Connor, Marcus Tudgay, Leon Clarke (Francis Jeffers 82)
QPR Team News:
Warnock may make sparing changes to his side after a positive point up at Preston – with Tamás Priskin now a destined starter after his goal at Deepdale.
Carl Ikeme’s is set to feature in his penultimate game ahead of Radek Černý while Damion Stewart and Kaspars Gork?s are poised to continue in the centre of defence.
Matt Connolly could return but goal machine Peter Ramage and debutante Du?ko To?ić set to start at full-back with Alejandro Faurlín and Mikele Leigertwood continuing through the middle.
Lee Cook and Hogan Ephraim will battle for a place on the left while Ákos Buzsáky and Tamás Priskin will fight it out for a place alongside Adel Taarabt behind the front-man.
Antonio German looks set to drop to the bench with Jay Simpson to be deployed as the lone front-man, with Rowan Vine also looking to come from the bench.
Martin Rowlands (knee) and Gavin Mahon (knee) remain the only long term absentees.
Possible line up:
Ramage – Stewart – Gork?s – To?ić
Leigertwood – Faurlín
Priskin – Taarabt – Cook
Player to watch: Adel Taarabt
Taarabt is a stunning talent and every time a match report is compiled recently it appears that superlatives are starting to run dry!
The Moroccan was given a well-earned break by Neil Warnock following another excellent display up at Deepdale, and it is hoped a refreshed Adel can provide the Owls untold misery this weekend.
Adel is without a doubt Rangers’ key weapon at present and Warnock is hoping to retain his services for another campaign, but with his heart set on a move it remains to be seen whether the R’s can capture their man.
To read his career profile Click Here >>>
Sheffield Wednesday Team News:
Wednesday are set to be boosted by the return of two key players ahead of the clash at Loftus Road – with Lewis Buxton and Jermaine Johnson poised to make their come-back from injury.
Lee Grant should start behind a back four of Eddie Nolan, Darren Purse, Lee Beevers and former R’s target Tommy Spurr – the returning Buxton due to return to the bench.
The Owls may decide to go with a three man midfield comprising of Tom Soares, James O’Connor and Darren Potter with Marcus Tudgay and Luke Varney supporting lone forward Leon Clarke.
They may however decide to sacrifice this midfield in favour of wingers Michael Gray and Jermaine Johnson pushing one up to support Clarke.
Sean McAllister and Tommy Miller are sidelined through injury with former England interntional Francis Jeffers poised to feature from the bench.
Nolan – Beevers – Purse – Spurr
Soares – O’Connor – Potter
Tudgay – Clarke – Varney
Player to watch: TBA
The Stat Attack
Queens Park Rangers: D L D D D
Sheffield Wednesday: D D D W D
HEAD 2 HEAD
Queens Park Rangers: 19
Sheffield Wednesday: 27
LAST TIME OUT
Coca Cola Championship – 07/11/2009
Sheffield Wednesday 1 (Johnson 13)
Queens Park Rangers 2 (Simpson 10, Gork?s 82)
Team: Radek Černý, Mikele Leigertwood, Kaspars Gork?s, Fitz Hall (Matthew Connolly 30), Peter Ramage, Ben Watson, Gavin Mahon, Adel Taarabt (Rowan Vine 88), Ákos Buzsáky (Alejandro Faurlín 68), Wayne Routledge, Jay Simpson.
QPR 2-0 Sheffield Wednesday – 17-09-1988
Sheffield Wednesday 0-1 QPR – 18-04-1983
Referee: Mr Colin Webster (Tyne & Wear)
Assistants: Mr John Busby (Oxon) and Mr Gary Evetts (Herts)
Fourth Official: Mr Lee Collins (Surrey)
Colin Webster will take charge of his eight QPR game this weekend – but his first at Loftus Road as the R’s and Sheffield Wednesday face off.
The R’s have won three times when Mr Webster has been presiding, but also oversaw a thumping (6-1) at the hands of Leeds United.
To read our report on the official Click Here >>>
Rangers have enough about them in an attacking capacity to see off Wednesday this weekend, but must be wary of the pace the Owls possess on the counter-attack.
Jermaine Johnson will be a key weapon for Wednesday owing to his pace on the counter-attack while Marcus Tudgay and Leon Clarke also posses dangerous attacking credentials.
Tamás Priskin’s goal will hopefully give him some confidence while Jay Simpson is poised to return following a rest on the sidelines.
Teams: Leicester City v QPR
Date: Monday April 5, 2010 – 3.00pm
Ground: Walkers Stadium, Leicester