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Premier League

  • 29 April 2012
  • • 13:30
  • • Stamford Bridge, London
  • Referee: H. Webb
  • • Attendance: 41675
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Chelsea - QPR Preview: Blues seeking first London derby win in Premier League this season

The Hoops travel the short distance to Stamford Bridge one point above the drop zone and with a poor away record, while the hosts are still buzzing from European success on Tuesday

  PROBABLE LINEUPS

CHELSEA

Cech
Ferreira, Bosingwa, Terry, Cole

Essien, Meireles
Ramires, Mata, Sturridge 

Torres
QPR

Kenny
Onuoha, Ferdinand, Hill, Taiwo

Mackie, Barton, Derry, Buzsaky
Cisse, Zamora


Chelsea are facing a defensive crisis ahead of the west London derby with QPR on Sunday. David Luiz and Gary Cahill are both sidelined with hamstring injuries while Branislav Ivanovic misses the final game of his three-match ban after being charged with violent conduct after an incident with Wigan's Shaun Maloney earlier this month.

These problems leave Roberto Di Matteo with just one recognised centre-back in John Terry and therefore Jose Bosingwa is likely to fill in while Paulo Ferreira should replace his fellow countryman at right-back.

Aside from the back four, the manager's other issue is whether to rest up his squad after their successful efforts against Barcelona on Tuesday, and with FA Cup and Champions League finals on the horizon, or whether to keep full focus on trying to finish in the top four.

As for the visitors, Mark Hughes will make late decisions on both Djibril Cisse and Clint Hill, who are likely to recover from knocks, while it is less probable that Samba Diakite will make the starting line-up. Adel Taarabt is also unavailable for QPR after the midfielder saw red against Tottenham in their last game.

  DID YOU KNOW?
  • Chelsea have only beaten QPR twice in Premier League history, though one of those occasions came earlier this season.
  • Since the Italian (pictured right) took over, the Blues have lost just once in 15 across all competitions, against Manchester City.
  • However, the hosts have not managed a single London derby victory this season in the League, drawing five and losing two.
  • QPR, on the other hand, have mustered three wins out of their seven capital derbies so far this season, although all of those were at home.
  • Hughes' men have gained just 11 points from their travels this campaign, the lowest in the league.
  • In their last eight fixtures, the visitors have recorded alternate away victories and away losses - should this trend carry on to Sunday, Chelsea would win.
  • The Hoops have received eight red cards in the league this season, which is one away from Sunderland's record high of nine in 2009-10.
  • Ahead of the clash, the Premier League have announced that pre-match handshakes have been suspended due to "specific legal context" regarding John Terry's alleged racial abuse of Anton Ferdinand.

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Players to watch

J. Terry

Position: Defender

Games: 0

  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
Though Chelsea fans have repeatedly expressed their love for the passionate centre-half, a moment of stupidity on Tuesday night nearly cost them a place in the Champions League final when, after he received an utterly needless red card, the Blues went 2-0 down and faced the steepest of uphill challenges.

However, thanks to goals from Ramires and Fernando Torres, along with a monumental defensive effort from the whole side and especially Petr Cech, the 31-year-old's blushes were spared. Now the defender must move quickly and produce the correct type of fight on the pitch to show us all his desire.

D. Cissé

Position: Attacker

Games: 0

  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
The speedy striker is a top player, there is no doubt about that. He has netted three goals in just five games for QPR this season and has bags of ability that can harm a make-shift Chelsea back-four, if he can stay on the pitch for 90 minutes.

The 30-year-old has also received two red cards in the handful of appearances he has made, which is a shame for Hughes because he would certainly have added to his tally, and helped the Hoops' league position, if he had just played more games. Therefore in this local derby, where things can get heated, he must keep his cool in order to help his side gain some much needed points.

Editor's Prediction

With Chelsea heading into the game with severe defensive frailties, QPR have a great chance to get one over on their rivals, who must also be thinking about the two upcoming finals in their calendar. However, Hughes' side's record this season on the road has been less than impressive, and you could argue that Di Matteo's men will be even more fired up. Despite this, with the hosts physically and mentally drained, a vital point is a very real possibility for the visitors.

Last Five Matches

Head To Head

Chelsea

Queens Park Rangers

Wins
3
1
1
Wins

Betting & Predictions

Reader's Predictions

Chelsea FC CHE
Chelsea FC Chelsea
Draw
Queens Park Rangers FC QPR
Queens Park Rangers FC Queens Park Rangers
84%

Top 3 Predictions

Chelsea FC CHE
3 - 0
Queens Park Rangers FC QPR
Chelsea FC CHE
2 - 0
Queens Park Rangers FC QPR
Chelsea FC CHE
3 - 1
Queens Park Rangers FC QPR

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