PAULO Sousa will pit his wits against his former employers as Queens Park Rangers make the trip to the Liberty Stadium.
This will be the first time that Sousa has faced Rangers since his tumultuous departure in April, where he was relieved of his duties for ‘divulging confidential information.’
His unveiling at Swansea City came as a surprise to some, but nevertheless you cannot doubt his commitment to succeed in English football and perhaps prove a point to some of his doubters.
It seems thus far that the Swans have followed a similar path to QPR under Sousa, with the Welsh outfit the lowest scorers in the division by some distance, while also keeping the conceded column to single figures.
Under his replacement Jim Magilton, Rangers have flourished and found the goalscoring touch that eluded them under the Portuguese boss, with free flowing attacking football at the forefront of Jim’s brief tenure.
Indeed Magilton’s Ipswich Town dished out a sound thrashing of Sousa’s QPR in February, with a breathtaking display of attacking football combined with a killer instinct.
QPR and Magilton will be hoping for a similar outcome as Rangers renew old acquaintances with Paulo Sousa and former midfielder Jordi López at the Liberty Stadium tomorrow.
Newcastle United 1 (Harewood 70)
QPR 1 (Watson 7)
Team: Radek Černý, Mikele Leigertwood, Kaspars Gork?s, Damion Stewart, Gary Borrowdale, Wayne Routledge, Martin Rowlands, Ben Watson, Ákos Buzsáky, Rowan Vine (Alejandro Faurlín 86), Jay Simpson (Adel Taarabt 72).
Doncaster Rovers 0
Swansea City 0
Team: Dorus de Vries, Alan Tate, Ashley Williams, Garry Monk, Marcos Painter, Àngel Rangel, Mark Gower (Besian Idrizaj 87) Thomas Butler, Ashley Richards, Craig Beattie (Darren Pratley 62), Gorka Pintado (Stephen Dobbie 75).
Swansea City Team News:
Who R Ya? >>>
Swansea City boss Paulo Sousa will hand late fitness tests to some key players ahead of the clash with QPR tomorrow.
Dorus de Vries will line up in goal and he will be hoping that Alan Tate doesn’t have to replace him as he did last year in the goalless draw at the Liberty Stadium.
Skipper Garry Monk will once again lead the defensive unit with Tate looking to retain his central defensive spot alongside him. Marcos Painter and Àngel Rangel should start at full back in the continued absence of Albert Serrán (ankle) and Federico Bessone (groin)
Nathan Dyer looks set to return to the line-up following suspension and may replace Tom Butler on the right flank, with Mark Gower looking set to occupy the other wing.
Youngster Ashley Richards may drop to the bench with the return of Jordi López and Darren Pratley from suspension and injury respectively. This move may see once record signing Ashley Williams drop back to a more natural defensive role.
Stephen Dobbie looks set to return and bolster a profligate forward line, with summer signing Craig Beattie set to line up alongside the Scotsman.
Leon Britton (toe), Andrea Orlandi (thigh) and Cedric van der Gun (thigh) will be subject to late fitness tests while Ferrie Bodde and Gorka Pintado will definitely miss out through injury and suspension respectively.
Player to watch: Nathan Dyer
Swansea winger Nathan Dyer has been outlined as the One to Watch ahead of this weekend’s clash with QPR.
The former Southampton wide-man has impressed since moving to the Liberty Stadium and returns from suspension to take up his place on the right flank.
He has proven sprightly in his fledgling career already and helped knock FA Cup holders Portsmouth out of the tournament last season.
To read our profile of the winger Click Here >>>
QPR Team News:
Radek Černý will be looking to continue his midweek heroics this weekend as he lines up behind the now familiar back four of Mikele Leigertwood, Damion Stewart, Kaspars Gork?s and Gary Borrowdale.
There is excellent competition for places in the middle of the park with skipper Martin Rowlands and loanee Ben Watson expected to get the nod once again in the R’s engine room.
Wayne Routledge will seek to continue some dynamic form down the right with Akos Buzsaky once again expected to drift in an carve out opportunity from the left.
Rowan Vine looks set to pip Adel Taarabt to selection once more, with the Moroccan having to make do with a place on the bench, while Jay Simpson forays alone upfront.
Fitz Hall (groin) and Angelo Balanta (groin) look set to sit out at the Liberty Stadium despite making a positive recovery, while Gareth Ainsworth (tendonitis), Matthew Connolly (glandular fever) and Lee Cook (knee) are also missing.
Possible line up:
Leigertwood – Stewart – Gork?s – Borrowdale
Watson – Rowlands (c)
Routledge – Vine – Buzsáky
Player to watch: Ben Watson
Hard-working central midfielder Ben Watson has been very consistent in the Rangers midfield of late, capped off by some useful goals.
The Wigan Athletic loanee has been a rock at the heart of midfield alongside Martin Rowlands and has chipped in with arguably fortuitous goals against Barnsley and Newcastle United.
His understanding with the R’s skipper has been the basis for solid displays from the team as a whole of late, and he will be looking to maintain this level of performance tomorrow.
To read his career profile Click Here >>>
The Stat Attack
Swansea City: L D D W D
Queens Park Rangers: W D W W D
HEAD 2 HEAD
Swansea City: 9
Queens Park Rangers: 16
LAST TIME OUT
Coca Cola Championship – 17-03-2009
Queens Park Rangers: 1 (Leigertwood 30)
Swansea City 0
Team: Radek Černý, Kaspars Gork?s, Peter Ramage, Fitz Hall (Damien Delaney 83), Matthew Connolly, Mikele Leigertwood, Jordi López (Liam Miller 87), Matteo Alberti, Adel Taarabt, Hogan Ephraim, Samuel Di Carmine (Heidar Helguson 74).
Swansea City 1-2 Queens Park Rangers – 31-01-1981
Referee: Mr K Hill
Assistants: Mr A J Horton & R J Martin
Fourth Official: Mr L Swabey
Experienced Football League official Keith Hill will take charge of Swansea City v QPR this weekend.
The official from Hertfordshire will be taking charge of his 11th QPR game in as many years as part of the National List of referees.
He has also taken charge of Swansea City five times at various levels, as documented in our report below.
He will be assisted by Tony Horton (West Midlands) and Richard Martin (Somerset) with the fourth official Lee Swabey (Devon).
To read our report on the official Click Here >>>
A side that previously lacked belief is now brimming with confidence as Magilton’s men travel to the lowest scorers in the Championship
Indeed Sousa’s era has brought with it an air of ill-discipline with as many sendings off as Championship goals. Nathan Dyer, Jordi López, Gorka Pintado, Garry Monk and Àngel Rangel have all been given their marching orders.
Only one defeat this season epitomises the positive start that QPR have made to the season, and if they can break through a stubborn defence, they have every chance of keeping a clean sheet.
Superhoop50: 1-0 QPR
LeeCookFan: 2-0 QPR
jezza99: 0-0 Draw
southernhoop: 3-1 QPR
PaulaHoops: 3-1 QPR
Ranger1975: 2-1 QPR
beforerodney: 4-1 QPR
cartouche: 2-1 QPR
toboboly: 1-0 QPR
Lenny367: 2-1 QPR
danielqpr: 1-0 QPR
Teams: Queens Park Rangers v Preston North End
Date: Saturday October 17, 2009 – 3:00pm
Ground: Loftus Road, London