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Premier League

  • 6 May 2012
  • • 14:00
  • • Loftus Road Stadium, London
  • Referee: A. Marriner
  • • Attendance: 17319
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QPR - Stoke City Preview: Mark Hughes' men must win in battle to avoid drop, while Potters boast just one win in nine

After four consecutive home victories, the relegation-threatened Hoops will look to secure all three points against Tony Pulis' side, whose away form this season has been poor

  PROBABLE LINEUPS

QPR

Kenny
Onuoha, Ferdinand, Hill, Taiwo
Mackie, Derry, Barton, Taarabt
Cisse, Zamora

STOKE CITY

Sorensen
Huth, Shawcross, Upson, Wilson
Walters, Whitehead, Whelan, Etherington
Crouch, Jones


Adel Taarabt has given QPR boss Mark Hughes a selection dilemma with his return from suspension, whilst Djibril Cisse looks set to partner Bobby Zamora upfront in a fairly attack-minded formation as the Hoops look to take maximum points from Stoke City to improve their survival chances with two Premier League matches remaining.

Samba Diakite will hope for a recall after missing the defeat at Chelsea through illness - positive news for Hughes, who has no fresh injury worries ahead of Sunday's crucial game.

Stoke on the other hand look set to be without Jermaine Pennant (hamstring) and Andy Wilkinson (groin) whilst Rory Delap (back) is likely to miss the clash at Loftus Road. Cameron Jerome will be hoping to play from the start after his equaliser against Everton last Tuesday, although Tony Pulis may go for the height and presence of Kenwyne Jones and Peter Crouch.

Manager Tony Pulis has confirmed that Thomas Sorensen will replace Asmir Begovic in goal, in order to aid the Dane's Euro 2012 preparation.

  DID YOU KNOW?
  • QPR have won their last four Premier League matches at Loftus Road and are unbeaten in five.
  • The last time that the Rs won five home games in a row was in 1987.
  • Mark Hughes' men have not conceded a goal in either of their previous two games.
  • The Rs have received a league high of eight red cards this season.
  • Stoke City have won only one of their last nine Premier League matches.
  • Tony Pulis' men have registered just 11 goals away from the Britannia Stadium this season, the lowest in the league.
  • The Potters have scored a league-high 59 per cent of their goals from set-pieces.
  • Stoke have had fewer shots on target than any other Premier League side, with just 87.
  • Robert Huth could make his 100th Stoke City appearance.

Players to watch

B. Zamora

Position: Attacker

Games: 0

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The striker hasn't hit the ground running since his January move from west London rivals Fulham, scoring only twice in 12 matches. Zamora's last goal came in the 1-1 draw with Everton, way back on March 3.

Now at the tail end of the season, QPR fans will be hoping that the England international can hit some sort of belated form and help secure the Hoops' Premier League status.

M. Etherington

Position: Midfielder

Games: 0

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The midfielder has enjoyed some of the best football of his career since his move from West Ham United three years ago, making over 100 appearances for the Potters.

With Pulis expected to select Kenwyne Jones to partner Peter Crouch, Etherington will look to assist his team- mates as best he can with a supply of crosses from the wing. A firm fans' favourite at Stoke, he will look to attack Nedum Onuoha at every opportunity.

Editor's Prediction

Sunday's Premier League clash throws up a dramatic contrasts. QPR, who are in such a rich vein of form at Loftus Road on the back of four consecutive home wins, will look to pick up three points against a Stoke City side who have managed only one win from their last nine fixtures.

The Hoops will hope to consolidate their Premier League status with a vital win on home turf, whilst Stoke, following their European excursions this season, may have one eye on the end of the season on the eve of their 58th game of this campaign.

I expect the game to be a fairly open affair, with QPR going for the win and Stoke more than capable of hitting Mark Hughes' men on the counter-attack. The west London side will be desperate for a win as they fight relegation and with their last game of the season away at Manchester City, QPR fans will realistically view Sunday's game as a pivotal moment in their season.

Last Five Matches

Head To Head

Queens Park Rangers

Stoke City

Wins
1
1
3
Wins

Betting & Predictions

Reader's Predictions

Queens Park Rangers FC QPR
Queens Park Rangers FC Queens Park Rangers
Draw
Stoke City FC STO
Stoke City FC Stoke City
64%
24%

Top 3 Predictions

Queens Park Rangers FC QPR
2 - 0
Stoke City FC STO
Queens Park Rangers FC QPR
2 - 1
Stoke City FC STO
Queens Park Rangers FC QPR
1 - 0
Stoke City FC STO

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