Tomorrow the stagecoach heads to Loftus road to play the championship champions Queens Park Rangers. This game is the beginning of a new season for the wanderers, a season with difficult games coming thick, fast and early, and this game provides us with the perfect chance to get a good three away points and start as we mean to go on, well, until the week after.
As this is their first top flight game since 1996, you can bet the QPR players and fans will be going great guns to show the world what they can do and that the atmosphere at the stadium will be a booming (perhaps not in the away end with QPR charging absurd prices for away fans). Rangers are good starters, and rarely lose their opening day fixture, especially at home; in fact they have lost only one of their last 12 opening games anywhere. However, this is the big time, and with Owen Coyle beginning to look like he has dealt shrewdly in this transfer window, I expect us to give them a tough welcome back to the best league in the cosmos.
The rotating doors have been pleasantly swinging at Euxton this summer, and it is difficult to know what starting line-up will take to the field tomorrow afternoon. One thing we do know is that our new number nine Tuncay will be sat in the stands cheering on his new team as he is still yet to cut all the red tape. So what formation will Owen choose? Will he go for two up front, or perhaps one striker and a “man in the hole” as it’s been named (also heard it called a floater, both not very nice). Surely playing away to a recently promoted team should see us go for it and show no fear, however we also have to play our strongest line-up, and there is just something about the Davies/Klasnic strike force that doesn’t fill me with confidence. On the other hand, if we did play only one of those forwards, whom do we leave out? Okay, it would be Klasnic who misses out, but then who scores the goals? The other choice is what midfield pairing do we go for? Lets assume Reo-coker is a given, I don’t think we should also play Muamba, too much steel for a game like this, I would like to see either Pratley or Mavies take up the other position, and the remaining Pratley or Mavies to get in the hole (no giggles), and with Eagles and Petrov manning the wings, this looks to me like a good team to go with.
In DJ Campbell and Jay Bothroyd, QPR have added some serious firepower and with Adel Taraabt free to work his magic, they could provide a real test in the attacking department, however hopefully they will also play Keiron Dyer, this should make things a bit easier (this means that Dyer will now score). Owen may be tempted to man mark Taraabt and perhaps involve Muamba for this very reason, I hope he doesn’t, one man is just one man, and this is the premiership now Adel, and fortunately, at least for now, we still have Gary Cahill in our back four.
Last season our away form was poor, and our end of season form was even poorer. So this could suggest a bad result is on the cards, however, our team is much stronger on paper, and with our premiership pedigree and the fact that fatigue will not be an issue, I would like to think we can come away with the three points.
Short one today, back Sunday to discuss the game, transfers and my hopes for the new season, and naturally some annoying pointless ramblings, including Tuncay and how he will clearly be a player we will love.
Good luck fellas!
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