ANOTHER defeat goes by, and once again there is a chance for a swift response as Watford come to W12 in another must-win game for QPR.
Mick Harford’s men came up short once again in disappointing fashion as Coventry City held out for three points at the Ricoh – despite what the R’s boss deemed a much-improved display.
Rangers’ lack of cutting edge and creativity blighted their every step at the weekend and it will take a gargantuan effort if the hosts are to muster a crucial victory.
They face a Watford side that while providing formidable at home, haven’t won away since November when promotion chasing Middlesbrough played hosts to the Hornets.
Bolstered by the arrival of fans’ favourite Heidar Helguson this weekend’s visitors have managed to pick up points when it matters most – a problem that seems to hinder Rangers at present.
In a match that remains crucial to the outcome of the campaign, Harford will know the importance of such a clash and with any luck the players will turn in a performance that befits their billing.
Coventry City 1 (Deegan 10)
Team: Carl Ikeme, Peter Ramage, Damion Stewart, Ákos Buzsáky (Adel Taarabt 67), Kaspars Gork?s, Matt Connolly, Lee Cook, Alejandro Faurlín, Matt Hill, Jay Simpson, Tamás Priskin (Antonio German 55).
Watford 2 (Helguson 14, Taylor 34)
Bristol City 0
Team: Scott Loach, Lloyd Doyley, Martin Taylor, Jay DeMerit, Adrian Mariappa, Jon Harley, John Eustace, Henri Lansbury (Ross Jenkins 83), Don Cowie, Danny Graham (Liam Henderson 71), Heidar Helguson
QPR Team News:
Changes should once again be inevitable as Rangers once again put in a lacklustre display against potential relegation rivals Coventry.
Carl Ikeme will in all likliness continue in goal ahead of Radek Černý with Kaspars Gork?s likely to be partnered by either Damion Stewart or Matt Connolly depending on what formation Harford deploys.
Matt Hill and Peter Ramage look set to continue in their respective full-back berths with Nigel Quashie fighting with the aforementioned Connolly to partner Alejandro Faurlín in midfield.
Whether Harford selects the R’s best player – Adel Taarabt – remains to be seen having been left out of the previous two encounters. He will vie with Ákos Buzsáky and Lee Cook for a spot on the flank.
The game may come too soon for Marcus Bent (hamstring), but Tamás Priskin will be fighting for his spot with Antonio German and Rowan Vine alongside sure starter Jay Simpson.
Martin Rowlands (knee) and Gavin Mahon (knee) remain sidelined, with no word on the possible return date for the influential latter.
Possible line up:
Ramage – Gork?s – Stewart – Hill
Taarabt – Connolly – Faurlín – Cook
Priskin – Simpson
Player to watch: Lee Cook
Rangers’ most dangerous talent remains Lee Cook as he prepares to face his former club tomorrow night.
The wide-man has been in decent form of late, in stark contrast to the club, and will need to call on all his resolve if he is to do significant damage to Watford.
While his crossing wasn’t necessarily up to scratch he looked relatively dangerous throughout, and it’s a pity that his team-mates weren’t able to show the same application.
To view his career profile Click Here >>>
Watford Team News:
Watford have no fresh injury concerns ahead of this weekend’s clash with several players in contention to face Rangers.
Scott Loach will continue in goal with the formidable duo of Jay DeMerit and Martin Taylor looking to continue at the heart of the rearguard. Lloyd Doyley and Adrian Mariappa should continue at full back.
Tom Cleverley should come back into contention after recovering from a knee complaint, but after a useful display against Bristol City, former Chelsea and Fulham man Jon Harley could retain his spot.
Ross Jenkins and Stephen McGinn will have to be content with a place on the bench after the performances of John Eustace and Don Cowie – with Henri Lansbury playing wide-right.
Heidar Helguson is presumably ineligible so Liam Henderson looks set to link up with Danny Graham should the Hornets punt for a front two.
Mariappa – Taylor – DeMerit – Doyley
Lansbury – Eustace – Cowie – Cleverley
Henderson – Graham
Player to watch: Tom Cleverly
The midfielder’s creativity and ability to score goals makes him one for the volatile QPR defence to watch.
To view more detail Click Here >>>
Match Facts & Stats
Queens Park Rangers: L L L L L
Watford: L L W L W
HEAD 2 HEAD
Queens Park Rangers: 46
LAST TIME OUT
Coca Cola Championship – 07-12-2009
Watford 3 (Doyley 43, Cowie 56, Cleverley 90)
QPR 1 (Agyemang 33)
Team: Radek Černý, Peter Ramage, Damion Stewart, Fitz Hall, Mikele Leigertwood (Ákos Buzsáky 75), Wayne Routledge (Jay Simpson 72), Rowan Vine (Adel Taarabt 59), Patrick Agyemang, Ben Watson, Alejandro Faurlín, Gary Borrowdale.
Watford 1-2 QPR – 27-04-1971
QPR 2-0 Watford – 30-04-1975
Referee: Mr Pat Miller (Bedfordshire)
Assistants: Mr John Farries (Oxfordshire) & Mr Keith Yeo (Essex)
Fourth Official:Mr Ian Cooper (Kent)
Mr Miller will be in charge of a Rangers clash for the first time since early 2007 as he comes to Loftus Road on Tuesday night.
The official has presided over three QPR games of which the R’s have won all three, against Northampton Town, Coventry City and Leicester City.
To read our report on the official Click Here >>>
Once again the R’s are on the cusp of relegation and require the right tonic in order to haul themselves out of serious trouble.
The opportunities are coming thick and fast at the moment and at present Rangers aren’t making the most of the fixture pile-up as they remain ponderous in their sink towards the drop zone.
Rangers not only possess the potential to see off Watford, but they need to realise this potential if they are to stop the rot and push themselves away from harm.
One goal could be enough to see off the Hornets, who themselves are blighted by poor form on the road – a loss here would be another nail in the coffin of the R’s season.
Teams: QPR v Doncaster Rovers
Date: Saturday February 20, 2010 – 3.00pm
Ground: Loftus Road, London