RETURNING after the international break Queens Park Rangers will be looking to break their home duck against the newly-promoted Peterborough United.
In Darren Ferguson the Posh have one of the hottest commodities in English management judging by his family heritage and his personal achievements in the game to date. His skills as manager combined with the money of property tycoon Darragh MacAnthony has made for a formidable partnership at London Road.
You only had to catch a glimpse at television show Big Ron Manager to see how desperate Posh’s plight actually was. The eccentricity of chairman Barry Fry was only matched by the off-the-wall antics of boss Steve Bleasdale, who cut a highly-unpredictable figure, resigning minutes before a crucial game.
Since then the well-documented revival has swept Peterborough into the second-tier, and while they have taken League Two and One by storm in successive seasons, they are quickly finding out that there is a gulf in class when ascending to the Championship.
In QPR they face a side that continues to bubble under the surface and while the promise of attractive football is being fulfilled, goalscoring continues to be a problem that blights Rangers and could prevent them from achieving their playoff ambitions.
The addition of Ben Watson has supporters undeniably excited, but there is a lingering problem that Rangers haven’t yet rectified, the striking department. While time should be given to new additions to bed in, how long can Rangers afford to wait before dipping into the loan market.
After bagging their first win prior to the international break, Jim will be hoping that the building blocks of success are now in place and they can concentrate on breaking their duck at Loftus Road.
Scunthorpe United 0
QPR 1 (Taarabt 3)
Team: Radek Cerny, Peter Ramage, Matthew Connolly, Fitz Hall, Gary Borrowdale, Wayne Routledge, Mikele Leigertwood, Alejandro Faurlín (Gavin Mahon 81), Hogan Ephraim, Adel Taarabt (Rowan Vine 56), Jay Simpson (Heidar Helguson 70).
Peterborough United 1 (Batt 53)
Crystal Palace 1 (Lee 64)
Team: Joe Lewis, Craig Morgan, Gabriel Zakuani, Russell Martin, Tommy Williams (Charlie Lee 85), Lee Frecklington, Toumani Diagouraga (Paul Coutts 66), Shaun Batt (Tommy Rowe 70), Aaron McLean, Craig Mackail-Smith, George Boyd.
QPR Team News:
Queens Park Rangers will once again start with Radek Cerny in goal, with Peter Ramage and Gary Borrowdale flanking Matthew Connolly and whoever Magilton chooses to partner him at the heart of defence.
Kaspars Gorkss was voted by members on the Vital QPR forum as the natural selection to partner the former Arsenal man, and given his goalscoring exploits and stout defending for Latvia during last week, he must have worked his way into Magilton’s plans.
Wayne Routledge will start on the right flank as one of the more consistent performers and in light of Jim Magilton’s recent comments the returning Martin Rowlands will vie with Hogan Ephraim and Adel Taarabt for a place on the left-wing.
Wigan loanee Ben Watson looks set to make his Rangers debut in the middle of the park alongside either Alejandro Faurlín or Mikele Leigertwood, as Magilton has a midfielder selection headache.
Rowan Vine’s name was mooted during the week as a potential starter, but with Alessandro Pellicori scoring for the reserves and Jay Simpson putting in a decent debut display at Scunthorpe it could be tough for him to break back into the line-up.
This coupled with Adel Taarabt’s excellent work in a role behind a solitary front-man at Glanford Park could secure his position. The formation that Magilton decides to deploy will decide what players make the line-up this weekend.
Player to watch: Ben Watson
Queens Park Rangers finally got their man on Transfer Window deadline day as Ben Watson made the loan move from Wigan Athletic.
The midfielder had been on Rangers’ radar for quite some time, and it was thought his move to the Premier League outfit in January had put pay to Rangers interest.
With Roberto Martinez sweeping into the DW Stadium with new signings and ideas, Watson was advised to get some first team football on loan, and W12 was his first port of call.
For quite some time the R’s have searched for a midfield general and in Watson they may well have someone to get a foothold on the fixture and contribute to Rangers’ attacking threat.
He will make his debut against Peterborough United this weekend and will be looking not only for a good display but to get off the mark at Loftus Road.
To read his career profile Click Here >>>
Peterborough United Team News:
Who R Ya? >>>
Darren Ferguson has a fully fit squad at his disposal for the trip to W12, and in that respect has a selection headache with his Posh squad champing at the bit for their first victory of the campaign.
Joe Lewis has proven himself a consistent performer between the sticks, and will once again get the nod this weekend. So much so that he has been selected in a Fabio Capello England squad not long ago.
Tommy Williams has had some interesting things to say in the build-up, and he will once again line-up at left back, alongside Welsh international Craig Morgan, former Fulham man Gabriel Zakuani and Russell Martin.
Shaun Batt’s well taken goal against Crystal Palace should be enough to secure his place on the right, while George Boyd has proven himself entirely adaptable to Championship football with a succession of consistent displays on the other flank.
Ferguson would not be drawn on his central pairing with several players vying for two spots, and while Lee Frecklington and Toumani Diagouraga have struck up an understanding, Paul Coutts could break the partnership having performed well for Scotland Under 21s and Chris Whelpdale is available following injury.
Arguably the most limited aspect of the Posh squad is the strike force with Aaron McLean and Craig Mackail-Smith an undoubtedly talented duo, but beyond that there is former Bristol City striker Ben Wright, and George Boyd also has experience in a striker’s role.
Player to watch: George Boyd
Former Stevenage Borough midfielder George Boyd has been outlined as the One to Watch this weekend ahead of the clash with Peterborough United.
The wide-man, who can also play upfront, has stepped up to every new level he’s encountered from the Conference to the Championship.
To read our profile of the midfielder Click Here >>>
The Stat Attack
HEAD 2 HEAD
Queens Park Rangers: 9
Peterborough United: 6
LAST TIME OUT
Football League Division Two – 20-02-2004
Queens Park Rangers: 1 (Gallen 90)
Peterborough United: 1 (Platt 44)
Team: Nick Culkin, Terrell Forbes, Arthur Gnohere, Clark Carlisle, Gino Padula, Matthew Rose (Jamie Cureton 59), Marc Bircham, Steve Palmer (Richard Johnson 60), Kevin McLeod, Kevin Gallen, Paul Furlong (Tony Thorpe 59).
Queens Park Rangers 3-0 Peterborough United – 31-08-1963
Referee: Mr O Langford
Assistants: Mr A A Laver and Mr M T McCoy
Fourth Official: Mr I J Crouch
Mr Langford from the West Midlands will officiate his first Championship game as QPR host Peterborough United this weekend..
He has had one season already on the National List of referees, but this will be his first tie in the second tier.
To read our report on the official Click Here >>>
After picking up their first win of the season against Scunthorpe last weekend Rangers now understand the importance of an early goal in a tricky encounter..
In what could have proven to be a tough game, Rangers broke the deadlock early and helped sink the spirit of the home support.
This weekend will be no different as they look to silence a travelling support riding the crest of a wave with back to back promotions – and an early goal may well do the trick against a side yet to get their first win this season.
Boxer: 2-0 QPR
Southernhoop: 2-1 QPR
Beforerodney: 3-0 QPR
Jezza99: 1-0 QPR
PaulaHoops: 2-1 QPR
Clonmany_Hoop: 3-0 QPR
Superhoop50: 1-0 QPR
Toboboly: 2-1 QPR
Lenny367: 2-1 QPR
Nomar: 2-0 QPR
LeeCookFan: 3-1 QPR
Sandydl: 2-0 QPR
Cartouche: 2-1 QPR
Danielqpr: 2-0 QPR
Next Up In W12
Teams: Queens Park Rangers v Crystal Palace
Date: Tuesday September 15, 2009 – 8:00pm
Ground: Loftus Road, London.