QPR vs Newcastle United match preview

Posted on September 11th, 2011 | 15 Comments |

QPR v Newcastle United, September 2011.
Loftus Road beckons
Venue: Loftus Road, London
Date: Monday, Sept 12th, 2011
Kick-off: 8:00pm
Referee: Phil Dowd

After the annoying international break, Newcastle United return to Premier League action with a visit to the capital to take on Neil Warnock’s Queens Park Rangers.

The match is scheduled for live broadcasting via Sky Sports 1. Phil Dowd is the man in the middle, which could possibly be a good thing if you take into account it was he who was referee in our 4-4 draw against Arsenal, our 5-1 hammering of the Tramps and a memorable 4-3 victory at Stamford Bridge against Chelsea last season. Perhaps Dowd is now a good omen for the Magpies…

Much has been said about Joey Barton’s debut on Monday for Rangers, so I’m not going to go into detail about it because it’s boring and I don’t care.

Newcastle have had their best start to a Premier League season since the 1995 – 1996 season, picking up 7 points from 9 available, including two back to back wins. Newcastle are unbeaten in their last four matches against QPR, winning three of them. The last time the two clubs met was during our 2009 / 2010 Championship winning season, where Newcastle triumphed 1-0 at Loftus Road thanks to a strike from Peter Lovenkrands. QPR had a wake up call during their first match of this season, where they were smashed 4-0 at home to Bolton Wanderers. They managed to pick up an impressive victory though in their second game of the season, beating Everton 1-0 at Goodison Park. Their last match ended in defeat at the JJB Stadium versus Wigan, with a Franco Di Santo double doing the damage on the day. QPR currently sit in 14th place with 3 points.


QPR: (From) Kenny, Orr, Hill, Derry, Hall, Gabbidon, Taarabt, Dyer, Campbell, Bothroyd, Faurlin, Traore, Buzsaky, Perone, Connolly, Barton, Young, Smith, Helguson, Murphy, Wright-Phillips, Ferdinand, Puncheon

Newcastle United: (From) Krul, Elliot, Simpson, R. Taylor, Santon, Ferguson, Coloccini, S. Taylor, Tioté Cabaye, Gutierrez, Marveaux, Obertan, Gosling, Smith, Ba, Shola Ameobi, Lovenkrands, Best, Sammy Ameobi.

Hatem Ben Arfa, Haris Vuckic and Mike Williamson are unavailable due to injury. It seems every newspaper in the country believe Williamson has a broken arm, which he doesn’t, he has an ankle injury he picked up right in front of me at the League Cup match at Scunthorpe. Danny Guthrie, James Perch and no danger Ranger were all involved in our reserves mid-week fixture, but none of them have made the provisional squad. Shola Ameobi still has a hip injury (shock), so it’s unlikely he will play. Davide Santon will most likely start on the bench, and I doubt we will see him on Monday night, so Ryan Taylor will probably continue at left-back. New goalkeeper Rob Elliot will most likely join Santon on the bench.

QPR have Joey Barton, Anton Ferdinand, Shaun Wright-Phillips, Jason Puncheon, Luke Young and Armand Traore all ready to make their debuts. I expect all of them to start for Rangers on Monday night. Clint Hill has a slight niggle, but DJ Campbell seems to have shook a virus and looks likely to partner once alleged Toon target, Jay Bothroyd, up front.

Probable formation

Possible formation: QPR v Newcastle United, September 2011.
4-4-2 likely?
Pardew will likely employ a 4-4-2 formation, with the back four the same as the last three Premier League games. I expect once Santon is up and running, he will slot into the left-back position and Simpson will be swapped with Ryan Taylor. Obertan will likely continue his right-wing role, though I’d really like to see Marveaux get a start as at Scunthorpe he really impressed me. Personally, I’d prefer a 4-2-3-1 formation, and include Gosling or Marveaux in the starting eleven as I don’t see Best and Ba combining that well, but Ba did set up Best’s second goal versus Fulham the other week, so maybe they just need time to gel. Once Hatem Ben Arfa is fit, I expect we will see the 4-2-3-1 on a more regular basis, with Ben Arfa operating behind a lone striker. Whether the lone striker is Best or Ba, is totally up to them, they have to earn the right to start. Best certainly seems to be in pole position to lead the line at the moment.

QPR will likely line up with a 4-4-2, with three new defenders slotting into the back four (Ferdinand, Young and Traore). Barton will get his wish of operating in the centre of midfield, with Wright-Phillips on the right. I expect Ryan Taylor will deal with Wright-Phillips though, and Jonas will also provide excellent support for Taylor. It’s Danny Simpson I’m more worried about, with Adel Taarabt likely to drift from the left to infield. At Sunderland, Sessegnon had a free role which Newcastle failed to deal with in the first-half, so Tioté must wake up and provide decent cover for the back four, as Taarabt will drift all over the final third of United’s half.

QPR will obviously have a new group of players eager to impress. In fact, listening to Neil Warnock, I think he believes that QPR are now a solid side and he’s starting to believe the hype about his team. In reality, the only top player they have signed is Barton, their defensive purchases aren’t exactly fantastic, and I can see us causing them problems down the channels (as long as we don’t revert to toe punting the ball forward). I’m not concerned about Wright-Phillips, I simply don’t rate him that highly, and I think Jonas and Ryan Taylor can nullify any potential threat he may cause. The media seem to be predicting a win for QPR and United are the underdogs, more importantly ‘pundit’ Paul Merson thinks Newcastle will lose, so that usually means we will win…

Key man QPR

Joey Barton

Key Man Newcastle

Cheick Tioté

Match thoughts

I expect a tight match on Monday, though this depends on how Newcastle start the game. If they start like the last four matches and with QPR having so many debutantes I can see an early goal. I expect a goal either way to settle this one, and whoever scores first to win the match. The Sky TV cameras will be there, wanting to see something dramatic unfold with it being Joey Barton’s first match for Rangers, so the game could become a fiery encounter, especially in the midfield areas. Hopefully our lads (Tioté especially), can keep cool heads and prosper on the night.

Join our match banter tomorrow night for more waffle and possibly some links to the game.

Howay The Lads.

NUFCBlog Author: Jimbob Backpacker extraordinaire and current resident of sunny Sheffield. Loves Marmite, hates peanut butter. Sleeps twice a day, wrestles Polar Bears because he can and regards himself as cool as a cucumber in a bowl of hot sauce. Jimbob has written 40 articles on this blog.

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15 Responses

  1. Suppose I’ve been a little dismissive of SWP there Worky. It’s just I have faith in Rayor and Jonas. Don’t have much faith in Simpson though. We’ll see I guess…

  2. A few pundits seem to think we are going to lose. Funny how impressed they are with QPR signings. Sorry, but I am not impressed. We should win the game comfortably if we suffocate them for the first 20-25minutes.

  3. superb preview jimbob

    wish i had your confidence as i would take a draw now!

    we have to be strong and take are chances from the off or we will have a long night!

  4. Yep some good points JB. However I too wouldnt risk 4-4-2 mainly because in QPR’s three previous games in the BPL Warnock has opted for 4-2-3-1 in all of them.

    Now with his new players, he’s suggesting he’ll give SWP freedom to roam and leave Taarabt on the left and presumably Joey on the right with DJ up front ?

    IMO 4-4-2 would be the wrong choice mainly because two strikers are a luxury we cannot afford at the moment. I’d prefer Tiote to partner Cabaye and use the three midfielders (Gosling, Jonas and Marveaux – if fit ??) to support Best or Ba up front.

    I saw Gosling put in a reasonable shift for the U21’s the other night and he put some decent crosses in from the right. If Marveaux is fit to play I’d see him on the left with Jonas adopting a central, roaming role just behind the striker as IMO he is the nearest player we have to HBA in terms of ability and thought process.

    However the benefit of a flexible midfield three is just that – flexibility. Marveaux can play as an AM and Jonas can play on either wing and Gosling is comfortable on the right or in CM. The key is not to isolate Best or Ba but to use the midfield to combine and become a “front four” when applicable.

  5. I would go with that. 4-5-1 is the way forward for us, even if QPR didn’t play 4-5-1. We look better when we flood the midfield and have a lot of quality in that area.

    Would probably play Obertan on the right ahead of Gosling though; who I feel needs a few more substitute appearances before he is up to speed.

  6. I’m going with a 2-1 to the Toon!

    It seems like this squad is built for a 5-man midfield but AP disagrees. I don’t think he’ll change systems to accommodate HBA. Wouldn’t he want everyone else to get used to it? He has the personnel to do it. My guess is AP prefers 4-4-2 and sees the squad as near complete. If you think about it…

    GK: Krul-Harper/Elliot
    RB: Simpson-R. Taylor
    CB: Coloccini-Williamson
    CB: S. Taylor-Perch
    LB: Santon-Ferguson
    CM: Cabeye-Guthrie
    CM: Tiote-Smith
    LM: HBA-Marveaux
    RM: Jonas-Obertan
    FW: Best-Ameobi
    FW: Ba-Lovenkrands

    See-2 senior players for every position-albeit with some weak sports, sure…except, in my opinion, you guys are right and this formation will waste the squad’s talents.

  7. Cheers Geordiedug, appreciate it. I dunno why I’m confident about tomorrow, could just be me being delusional :-)

    AndyMac,agreed mate. I’d rather not us play 4-4-2 at all. I think Warnock will play 4-4-2 though tomorrow, with two up top. SWP on the right to target Raylor and Taarabt floating from the left.

    Reckon we’ll have to wait for Ben Arfa’ return for a change though. Really like to see Marveaux get a game too.

  8. Howay the lads! Go joint third if we win this one – which will hopefully stop all this negative moaning thats going on at the moment… We have a quality squad and are making an impressive start to the season. 2-1

  9. We should play like this: (4-1-3-1-1)
    Simpson, S.Taylor, Coloccini, Santon
    R.Taylor, Cabaye, Jonas

  10. For me, the question is Raylor or Santon at LB. I think (heaven help me) that it should be Raylor. They say Santon will make the bench and I agree. I like the idea of Jonas supporting the lone striker because he thinks fast and can see options. But if you do that, then Marveaux must step up at LW. However, I want the AM position to be HBA’s. Get back ASAP!!!

  11. Paul141726 says:
    September 12, 2011 at 2:13 am

    “For me, the question is Raylor or Santon at LB. I think (heaven help me) that it should be Raylor.”

    Paul, I would say that brand new players seldom start and usually go on the bench and come on later, unless perhaps it’s a big new striker at a club that absolutely gagging for goals. Not much chance of that tomorrow though!

    Santon will almost certainly end up being first choice unless something odd happens.