It’s hard to tell whether the International break came at a good or bad time for us. Usually you want nothing to interrupt your flow when you have a good momentum, but with injuries kicking in, we could maybe have done with a breather. Having said that, what we didn’t need was Mehdi Abeid adding to the treatment room posse after picking up an injury whilst away with Algeria.
There’s now expectation in the stands again that we’ll see off ‘Arry’s R’s however, traditionally, this is exactly where United will let you down.
So, Pardew has some big work on, not only to patch up a side, but also to deal with an eager crowd, looking to bank another 3 points which would go a long way towards ensuring a major chunk of the points required for top 10/survival are in the bag before we turn into the 2nd half of the season, over Christmas/New Year.
The popular consensus is that QPR are rejuvenated of late, they still have 4 defeats in their last 6 games, but a point vs Man City, a win over Aston Villa and close defeats to Liverpool and Chelsea may hint at light at the end of the tunnel. However, on the road, it’s 5 defeats out of 5. Those came at the hands of Spurs (4-0), Man Utd (4-0), Southampton (2-1), West ham (2-0) and Chelsea (2-1). Charlie Austin is their man in form with 6 goals.
Adel Taarabt and Alejandro Faurlin are unavailable.
There should be no problem with Tim Krul continuing in goal and Daryl Janmaat looks fine to pay at right back, but both Steven Taylor and the skipper are both out, meaning that Mike Williamson is likely to partner Paul Dummett at centre half, which could be an uncomfortable afternoon given Austin’s movement and Zamora’s strength. Haidara should fill in at left back.
Sissoko and Colback are expected to retain their places but Abeid’s and Tiote’s injuries are likely to offer Vurnon Anita a route back into the team, completing the central midfield 3. With Obertan and Aarons out I expect Cabella and Sammy Ameobi to play wide, leaving Ayoze Perez to play as a lone striker.
Santon – No return date
Obertan – No return date
De Jong – No return date
Good – No return date
Coloccini – Calf – 3 weeks
Tiote – Calf – West Ham
Aarons – Hamstring – 3 weeks
Abeid – Ankle – Burnley
Steven Taylor – Knee – West Ham
Possible Team (4-2-1-2-1)
- Krul: 2. Janmaat, 5. Williamson. 6. Dummett, 3. Haidara: 4. Anita, 8. Colback: 10. Sissoko: 7. Cabella, 11. Ameobi: 9. Perez:
Elliot, Ryan Taylor, Streete, Cisse, Bigirimana, Riviere, Gouffran
Referee: Chris Foy
History vs. The R’s at SJP in the League
1982/83 Won 1-0. But that was hardly the ‘real’ story. Special K’s day. Attendance, 35,718
1984/85 Won 1-0. A vital 3 points that helped United survive. We finished in 14th but just 3 points separated us from 3rd bottom Norwich City. George ‘Rambo,’ ‘Mavis’ Reilly with the winner. Attendance, 21,733
1985/86 Won 3-1. United had got off to a flying start and were unbeaten in the 1st 4 games when QPR rolled into town. Reilly (again), Peter Beardsley and Neil McDonald ensured the points stayed on Tyneside. Attendance, 25,219
1986/87 Lost 0-2. United fell to their 2nd straight, home defeat of the season. Attendance, 21,417
1987/88 Drew 1-1. A Michael O’Neill equaliser earned us a point with United heading for the heigts of 8th top. Attendance, 18,403
1988/89 Lost 1-2. Ray Ranson climbing the fence in celebration was a very rare event. So rare in fact that it would never happen again. Bogey man Colin Clarke on target for the visitors. Attendance, 21,685
1993/94 Lost 1-2. Mauled by Sir Les. Nut after a brilliant equaliser by Malcolm Allen, the Welsh forward spurned the opportunity to level at 2-2 in the last minute as he saw his penalty saved. Attendance, 33,926
1994/95 Won 2-1. One of Peter Beardsley’s (many) standout goals as he and Kitson saw off the visitors. Attendance, 34,278
1995/96 Won 2-1. After the wobble at Anfield this got us back on track (temporarily). Another 2 goals by Pedro, after Holloway had put the visitors ahead. Attendance, 36,583
2009/10 Drew 1-1. Marlon Harewood struck an equaliser to see us stay on top of the table, but Wayne Routledge was the best player on the park by a mile. Attendance, 38,923
3 minutes in
2011/12 Won 1-0. The bets goal of Leon Best’s life settled this one. Attendance, 49,855
2012/13 Won 1-0 This time Shola Ameobi earned the points with a neat finish at the Leazes End. Attendance, 50,180
Their main strength is in their strikers although you can bet Joey Barton is keen to prove a point to those that ensured he left SJP.
Chris Betts – Follow Chris at @tfbettsy1892
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