Competition: Premier League – Queens Park Rangers vs Tottenham Hotspur
Venue: Loftus Road – Saturday, March 7th – 15:00 GMT (10:00 ET)
Match Odds: QPR 100/30 – Draw 14/5 – Tottenham Hotspur 3/4
QPR are still sitting in 18th after their midweek defeat to Arsenal, three points behind fellow strugglers Aston Villa, but with a game in hand over them and Burnley, who are sitting below them in 19th.
Tottenham Hotspur have fallen behind in the race for Champions League football, but if they can secure all three points in this tie they will be right back in the mix.
Spurs are six points behind Manchester United who are in that all important fourth spot, but the North Londoners do have this game in hand to make up the difference. The two sides face each other in their respective next fixtures after this game, so it is a huge chance for Spurs to gain ground.Embed from Getty Images
QPR’s spirited attempt of a comeback on Wednesday night gives them some hope for this tie and they always have the chance of causing an upset when playing at Loftus Road.
The managerial stand-in pair of Chris Ramsey and Kevin Bond, who were both previously with Spurs, are still with just one win in three games in charge and they are going to need to start picking up points, especially at home, if they are to stand any chance of avoiding the drop.
Tottenham thumped Queens Park Rangers 4-0 in the reverse fixture back in August and will be hoping they find a similarly high scoreline, as with the race for the top four so tight, goal difference could well play a part.
QPR will be without skipper Joey Barton who is serving the second of his three-match ban after his moment of madness at Hull City. Nedum Onuoha could also miss out due to the gash on his face suffered during a clash of heads on Wednesday. The Hoops will still be missing regulars Leroy Fer (knee), Richard Dunne (knee), and Alejandro Faurlin (knee).Embed from Getty Images
Tottenham Hotspur’s squad looks to be all in shape ahead of this tie and Mauricio Pochettino will be hoping his players will not be feeling the strain during this busy period. Squad rotation is key during the crunch point of the season and given how hard Spurs were made to work for their midweek win against Swansea and there could be some changes. Andros Townsend or Nacer Chadli could drop to the bench with Erik Lamela looking to force his way back into the first team.
QPR’s last five in the Premier League: L/L/W/L/L
Tottenham Hotspur’s last five in the Premier League: W/W/L/D/W
Key Stat: Queens Park Rangers have won just one of the last seven meetings between the sides in the league.Embed from Getty Images
Key Player: Charlie Austin – The prolific goalscorer notched his 15th of the season on Wednesday and the focus of the game will be the comparison between him and fellow countryman, Harry Kane. QPR will desperately need their talisman to deliver if they are to take points from this tie.
QPR 1-3 Tottenham Hotspur – The Spurs squad should be too strong for QPR, but this is a must win for both sides so despite a predicted two goal margin, this will be a close game.