Villa visit Loftus Road this Sunday
QPR will be hoping they can pick up their first win in five games when they take on Aston Villa on Sunday afternoon, live on Sky Sports.
The R’s are going through a difficult spell under Ian Holloway after things began so brightly with a debut win over Norwich.
Despite our poor run of form there were signs on Wednesday against Derby that the team aren’t far away from producing the kind of performances that will help us climb the league table.
Our visitors have also struggled at times this season and their early poor form led to a change of manager with Steve Bruce replacing Roberto Di Matteo in October.
Since then the Villans have gone on an excellent run of form losing just two of their last ten games and showing some constancy in their performances especially defensively where they’ve conceded the fourth least goals in the division.
You only have to look at some of the names in their squad to see Villa are a team with Premier League pedigree. After all, it was not too long ago that they were competing for Champions League places and playing in the Europa League under the guidance of Martin O’Neil. However last season, for the first time in 29 years, they were relegated following a disastrous campaign which saw them win just three matches and appoint two different managers.
Roberto Di Matteo was appointed manager in the summer and managed to attract some big names to the club including Ross McCormack and Mile Jedinak but he failed to win over the support of the fans following a poor start to the season, where they won just one of their first ten games.
But such is the stature of Aston Villa they managed to tempt Steve Bruce back into the Championship in what is so far looking to be an astute appointment.
QPR: Jordan Cousins is a doubt for this match with a hamstring injury. Elsewhere Jamie Mackie continues to build up fitness after making his return from injury with the Under-23s and Idrissa Sylla is training again following a hamstring injury. Steven Caulker (hip) and Jack Robinson (hamstring) remain out.
Aston Villa: Aston Villa defender Nathan Baker remains a doubt with a groin injury. But manager Steve Bruce has no new fitness concerns following Tuesday's 1-0 defeat by Norwich.
Predicted line up: Gollini, Hutton, Elphick, Chester, Amavi, Westwood, Jedinak, Grealish, Ayew, Adomah, Kodija.
Key Player: Jordan Ayew - The talented Ghanaian international is one of many Villa players who are capable of turning the game with a bit of individual quality.
PRE MATCH TALK
Marc Bircham: “You know you’re always in for a tough game against Steve Bruce’s sides, Villa are a massive football club and they always travel in great numbers. Our fans, as I know only too well, seem to get louder when there's a vocal away backing, so that should make for a good atmosphere. Hopefully that can work in our favour.”
Steve Bruce: “There’s another club who have been in the Premier League, struggled, spent lots of money, changed. They’ve now brought back Ian and with all of his enthusiasm and what he’s done at that club, they’re always going to be difficult. Whether we’re playing clubs at the top end or the bottom end, they cause you different problems.”
QPR win: 5/2
Aston Villa: 13/10
QPR first goal scorer: Sebastian Polter 6/1.
Aston Villa first goal scorer: Jonathan Kodjia 4/1.
LAST TIME OUT
Aston Villa 3 - 3 QPR – Premiership, Tuesday 7th April 2015
QPR goal-scorer: Matt Phillips, Clint Hill, Charlie Austin
Aston Villa goal-scorers: Christian Benteke x3
HEAD TO HEAD
(In all competitions)
QPR wins: 23
Aston Villa wins: 18
Referee: Geoff Eltringham
Assistant Referees: John Flynn and Matt Foley
Fourth official: Andy Davies
WEEKEND’S OTHER LEAGUE FIXTURES
Kick-offs 3pm unless otherwise stated
Norwich City v Huddersfield Town (7:45pm)
Blackburn Rovers v Reading
Bristol City v Preston North End
Burton Albion v Newcastle United
Cardiff City v Barnsley
Fulham v Derby County
Leeds United v Brentford
Nottingham Forest v Wolves
Sheffield Wednesday v Rotherham United
Wigan Athletic v Ipswich Town
Birmingham City v Brighton & Hove Albion (5:30pm)