QPR vs Chelsea by Rostick
Undefeated in the last two matches, QPR started getting points on the road after losing their first 11 away matches this season, but now the problems have moved to their home court – QPR lost the previous 6 home matches in all competitions and in these conditions it will be virtually impossible to avoid relegation. QPR needs to start getting points at home again, but a visit from Chelsea will not exactly be a confidence builder.
Chelsea is far from the form they had in the first part of the season, but the Blues are crawling their way to wins nonetheless – unimpressive, but the points are all that matter. Chelsea is on the back of a 2-1 win over Stoke and will be confident coming into this match, due to their improved form away from home. The Blues won the previous 4 road matches in the Premier League. With Arsenal closing in at just 4 points behind and a direct meeting at Emirates in the next round, Chelsea (who has 2 games in hand) can`t allow any slip ups today.
Team news & lineups:
There are no new absentees for QPR, but they continued to be plagued by injuries: Faurlin, Fer, Suk Young, Vargas, Rio Ferdinand and Furlong are out, while Dunne and Taarabt are doubtful. Chelsea lost Diego Costa due to injury. Obi Mikel is still out, while Fabregas is slightly doubtful but will most likely be in the starting lineup.
QPR: Green – Traore, Onuoha, Caulker, Hill – Phillips, Sandro, Barton, Kranjcar – Austin, Zamora
Chelsea: Courtois – Ivanovic, Terry, Cahill, Azpilicueta – Matic, Fabregas – Willian, Oscar, Hazard – Remy
Chelsea conceded at least 1 goal in all the previous 4 matches and Mourinho has been adamant that he wants to see improvement at the back. If they want to avoid nasty surprises in the title race, the Blues really need to step it up defensively, because they can`t keep allowing 1-2 goals per game from teams like Hull or Stoke – especially not with Diego Costa out. Looking at Chelsea’s defensive form and QPR`s recent appetite for goals (3 in the last round at Villa Park), this should be an overish game with both teams to score – on paper.
However, I am going against pure stats here and I will back Chelsea to finally win to nil. Surely Mourinho will approach this game in the most pragmatic fashion. It will be a struggle, so Chelsea will try to control the tempo, stay safe at the back and get that winning goal over the 90 minutes – 1 or 2 goals conceded could very well mean losing points and complicating the title race ahead of the derby with Arsenal – I don`t know if Chelsea can score more than one or two at Loftus road without Diego Costa. QPR won`t keep the goalscoring form much longer obviously and they will approach this game in a defensive manner – looking themselves to improve on the defensive end, because they leak too many goals right now.
It should be physicall game in which both sides will be desperate to improve their recent defensive stats. Chelsea has too much experience to get involved in a high scoring battle here, so my tip is Chelsea to win to nil. Prediction: Queens Park Rangers – Chelsea 0-2.
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|Chelsea wins to nil||Bet365||2.30||8||0-1 WON (+10.4 units)|
* Odds as of post published time and are subject to change.