AFTER a mixed few days up North, QPR are back on home turf as they welcome Derby and the Sky television cameras at Loftus Road on Monday night. Rangers bounced back with a closely fought 1-0 win against Barnsley which would’ve settled any doubts following the disappointing defeat away to Scunthorpe. Neil Warnock will want to keep his side as relaxed as possible ahead of the match in order to avoid a late season wobble.
Tuesday’s victory was the perfect way to come back from a shock defeat. Rangers demonstrated their resilience with a 90 minute shut-out against an enthusiastic Barnsley side which would’ve pleased Warnock immensely. The clean sheet was Rangers’ 23rd of the season breaking the club record. QPR will need to draw on that resilience to get over the finishing line.
Derby will take pride in a season double over rivals Leeds United on Tuesday. Nigel Clough’s men impressively came from a goal down to beat Simon Grayson’s men. Derby’s second goal scored by Ben Davies was worthy of winning any match. Davies caught a sweet volley from the edge of the box that flew into the top corner. That win would’ve eased the Rams relegation worries and after this weekend’s result, they sit in 19th position eight points clear of 23rd with this fixture their game in hand.
QPR 1 (Taarabt)
Team: Kenny, Orr, Hill, Gorkss, Connolly, Derry, Faurlin, Taarabt (Ephraim), Smith, Routledgt, Helguson
Derby 2 (Ward, B. Davies)
Leeds 1 (Gradel)
Team: Jones, Brayford, Roberts, Ayala, Barker, Savage, B. Davies, Bailey, Pearson (Robinson), S. Davies (Addison), Ward (Porter)
QPR Team News:
Jamie Mackie is the only long term absentee. Peter Ramage made a 30 minute cameo in the reserves in the week but is still a few weeks away from first team action.
Fitz Hall is a doubt with a groin injury which means Matt Connolly is expected to resume his position alongside Kaspars Gorkss at the heart of the R`s defence.
Possible line up:
Orr – Gorkss – Connolly – Hill
Faurlin – Derry
Routledge – Taarabt – Smith
Player to watch: Adel Taarabt
Assuming Robbie Savage plays it will be his duty to man-mark QPR`s playmaker Adel Taarabt. This being the last meeting between the pair, it would be great if Taarabt could re-assure Savage that he is making the right decision by retiring this season and teach the old dog a few new tricks. The Moroccan returned to action against Barnsley and made an instant impact with the only goal of the game and with Taarabt in the side Rangers are more concise going forward and certainly look more threatening.
Derby County Team News:
Gareth Roberts is again available for selection after making his comeback against Leeds. Tomasz Cywka could return after a recent knee injury.
Brayford – Barker – Ayala – Roberts
Savage – Bailey
B. Davies – Pearson – S. Davies
Player to watch: Ben Davies
Ben Davies has been identified by DanielQPR as the player to watch ahead of Monday`s match against.
For Daniel’s comprehensive review of the midfielder Click Here >>>
Match Facts & Stats
Queens Park Rangers: LWWLW
HEAD 2 HEAD
Queens Park Rangers: 13
LAST TIME OUT
Coca Cola Championship – 28/8/10
Derby 2 (Commons, Bailey)
QPR 2 (Agyemang, Mackie)
Team: Kenny, Orr, Hill, Gorkss, Connolly, Derry (Buzsaky), Faurlin, Mackie, Ephraim, Taarabt (Clarke), Helguson (Agyemang)
Attendance: 25, 874
Referee: Mr D Deadman
Assistants: Mr G Evetts & Mr M Scholes
Fourth Official: Mr P Crossley
Darren Deadman is the match official for Monday night’s game and has officiated 25 games this season. His most recent game was the 2-2 draw between Oxford United and Wycombe Wanderers.
Last season Deadman issued 94 yellow cards and 6 red cards in 37 games.
The weekend`s results weren`t especially kind to the R`s. Norwich, Cardiff and Reading all won temporarily closing the gap on Neil Warnock`s team. However, as long as QPR maintain the level of consistency they have shown throughout the season they should be fine in terms of gaining enough points for promotion. A clean sheet against Barnsley will do the back five a world of good in what was a hard fought game. Rangers are certainly more effective with Taarabt and Helguson back in the side and the latter will cause Ayala and Barker a few problems with his aerial ability.
I like the way Derby try to play. They played well against us in August with an expansive brand of passing football but after an arduous campaign whether their threadbare squad will have enough to hold Rangers Monday remains to be seen.
1-0 Another closely fought match with Rangers edging it. Routledge to score.
Who: CARDIFF CITY
Where: CARDIFF CITY STADIUM
When: 23/04/2011 – 12.45