QPR - Manchester United Preview: Top against bottom as Red Devils look to extend 12-point lead
The league leaders will hope to stretch their 14 game unbeaten run against a Rangers side who have not beaten them since 1992 and are still reeling from their 4-1 defeat to Swansea
By Tim Poole
Harry Redknapp is still without Jose Bosingwa (back) and Andrew Johnson (knee) but is expected to welcome back a host of previously injured players.
Fabio (hip), Junior Hoilett (hamstring) and Julio Cesar (groin) could all be selected after returning from their respective problems, while striker Loic Remy is also in contention despite a groin problem.
Bobby Zamora could also start, having come off the bench in QPR's last two matches, while Esteban Granero, Andros Townsend and Jermaine Jenas will present Redknapp with a selection dilemma in midfield.
The visitors, meanwhile, will be without Paul Scholes (knee), Wayne Rooney (illness) and Phil Jones (ankle).
However, Sir Alex Ferguson boasts an otherwise fully fit squad and has the rare luxury of not having a midweek game the following week.
Nani and Chicharito may be in contention for starting roles after their goalscoring exploits against Reading, while Rio Ferdinand could also feature in defence.
|DID YOU KNOW?|
- Bottom-placed QPR are currently 48 points behind league-leaders Manchester United and have not beaten the Red Devils since New Year's Day in 1992.
- Since the turn of the year, Harry Redknapp's side have won once and drawn four times in the Premier League, though they slumped to a 4-1 defeat in their last game at Swansea.
- Rangers enjoyed just 39% of possession in their loss at the Liberty Stadium and have registered the minority share of possession in their last nine Premier League matches.
- The Rs have also won just twice in the league this term (against Chelsea and Fulham), though that is already one more than the record for the fewest wins in a season - held by Derby County for their 2007/08 campaign.
- Manchester United are unbeaten in 14 league matches and 16 games in all competitions. Their last domestic defeat came in mid-November at Norwich City.
- The Red Devils are comfortably clear at the top of table with a 12 point lead - a gap bigger than at any point last season.
- United's three top scorers this term, Robin van Persie, Chicharito (pictured) and Wayne Rooney have scored 51 goals in all competitions between them so far.
- Sir Alex Ferguson's side boast a strong record on their travels this season, having amassed nine league wins on the road while suffering just two defeats and two draws. They are 13/2 to win 2-0 with bet365.
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Top 3 Predictions
QPR 0-3 Man Utd.
- 21.73 %
QPR 1-3 Man Utd.
- 15.7 %
QPR 0-2 Man Utd.
- 13.41 %
|England - Premier League (EPL)||Feb 23, 2013||QPR 0 - Man Utd. 2|
|England - Premier League (EPL)||Nov 24, 2012||Man Utd. 3 - QPR 1|
|England - Premier League (EPL)||Apr 8, 2012||Man Utd. 2 - QPR 0|
|England - Premier League (EPL)||Dec 18, 2011||QPR 0 - Man Utd. 2|
|England - Capital One Cup(League Cup) (CCUP)||Nov 11, 2008||Man Utd. 1 - QPR 0|
|Dec 3, 2013||QPR 3 - Bournemouth 0||ENG2|
|Nov 30, 2013||Doncaster Rovers 2 - QPR 1||ENG2|
|Nov 23, 2013||QPR 1 - Charlton 0||ENG2|
|Nov 9, 2013||Reading 1 - QPR 1||ENG2|
|Nov 2, 2013||QPR 2 - Derby 1||ENG2|
|1||David de Gea||Goalkeeper|
|14||Javier 'Chicharito' Hernandez||Striker|
|20||Robin van Persie||Striker|
The Moroccan has been instrumental to any success Rangers have enjoyed so far this season and will need to be at his best if his side are to attain precious points on Saturday. Taarabt ran the show in QPR's victory against Fulham, while he also assisted the winner against Chelsea. The 23-year-old missed a penalty against Norwich but can be counted on to bounce back in strong fashion and provide Redknapp's side with some much-needed spark.
|David de Gea|
The Spaniard has received plenty of criticism this term but is starting to establish himself as Sir Alex's regular goalkeeper. The 22-year-old was sensational at the Bernabeu recently and will look to continue his rich form if selected this weekend. United have not struggled with scoring goals this season, but at times their defence has been weak, and the Spanish shot stopper will be central to his side's chances of not conceding at Loftus Road.
Rangers have it in them to score, but barring a Redknapp-inspired miracle they shouldn't have anywhere near enough about them to trouble the in-form Red Devils.
Times In BST
Live Final scheduled Suspended Cancelled Postponed