QPR have found their feet under Ian Holloway and are on a great run now. Rotherham, despite being easily the worst side in the league overall, have been hard to break down at times but were routed at Loftus Road in a 5-1 mauling last game.
That result was achieved with five different scorers and the depth that Holloway has suddenly found in his squad is admirable. However, facing Derby away from home is a much tougher proposition and he will go with his strongest lineup for this game against Derby County.
Expected Starting XI:
GK – Alex Smithies
At 27, he is still young for a goalkeeper. Smithies is coming of age now and has had a fantastically consistent season. He has played all 38 Championship games so far and will deservedly keep his place in the side.
CB – Nedum Onouha
The 30-year-old has been round the block a bit, but the Rangers skipper is in fine form and will continue on the right-hand side of the defensive trio.
CB – Grant Hall
Other than the captain, no defender has played more games than Hall and his experience will be crucial in the heart of the back line.
CB – Joel Lynch
Lynch brings some good balance to the defence and the left-footed former Wales international should start again.
RM – Darnell Furlong
Traditionally a right-back, Furlong has enough attacking instinct to fill this role and has done well of late. 2 goals and 5 assists in League One for Swindon while on loan this season are decent numbers.
CM – Massimo Luongo
Definitely one of QPR’s better performers. His strengths appear to lie in the defensive side of his game and with a club-high 3.5 tackles per game on average, his presence will be important.
CM – Luke Freeman
With 2.4 tackles per game, Freeman’s dangerous left foot is also feared when going forward and he will look to add to his 4 league goals this season.
LM – Jake Bidwell
Another full-back being employed further up the field, Bidwell will remain solid defensively but may not offer too much going forward.
CAM – Conor Washington
A man who would probably prefer to play in the no.9 role, former Peterborough player Washington can slot in behind Smith. With 6 goals this season so far he can definitely prove a threat.
CAM – Idrissa Sylla
Yet another centre-forward in the side, Sylla adds to the huge presence QPR have while going forward. Sylla has 8 in 26 in his first season here and looks set to add to that before the season ends.
ST – Matt Smith
Signed from Fulham in January, he seems to be the current choice up front and will have plenty of support around him.