Norwich’s performance against Arsenal at the weekend told you almost everything you need to know about the Canaries this season: sharp in attack and comfortable on the ball, they are also worryingly prone to costly errors and susceptible to swift counter-attacks.
QPR are much harder to work out: on the one hand, they have beaten Everton, Wolves and Stoke away; on the other they were thrashed 6-0 by Fulham at Craven Cottage on 2nd October.
If Rangers are having another one of their off days then Norwich are fluent enough going forward to beat them handsomely, as Fulham did not so long ago.
Similarly, while they pushed Manchester City close at Loftus Road on 5th November, they were fortunate to win against nine-man Chelsea two weeks earlier.
This makes Norwich’s showdown with QPR at Carrow Road on Saturday particularly hard to call: should the QPR which impressed against the league leaders turn up in Norfolk then three points are surely there for the taking.
Conversely, if Rangers are having another one of their off days then Norwich are fluent enough going forward to beat them handsomely, as Fulham did not so long ago.
So where does that leave bwin’s 3Way football betting market? The home side are 6/5 favourites for the win, leaving the draw priced at 23/10 and a Rangers success at 11/5.
And there are two factors which are likely to tilt the tie in Norwich’s favour.
The first is home advantage, with the Canaries having shown in wins against Sunderland and Swansea earlier this season that they have enough quality to beat teams in the lower reaches of the table on their own ground, even if the likes of Champions League-chasing Arsenal prove too much of a challenge.
Also crucial will be the suspension of Joey Barton, QPR’s influential midfield schemer.
The former Newcastle man picked up his fifth yellow card of the season in Rangers’ last game against Stoke and his creative qualities in the final third will be sorely missed by the away side.
That is not to suggest that QPR’s creativity will be entirely neutered through Barton’s absence, for in Shaun Wright-Phillips manager Neil Warnock still has a potent attacking threat at his disposal.
And with Norwich failing to keep a clean sheet in their last 13 games, at least one QPR goal is more than likely at odds of 17/50.
But with the Canaries scoring at least twice in five of their last eight fixtures – with their failures to do so coming against sides in the top six – they have the requisite firepower to make up for any defensive lapses.
As well as backing a Norwich win, punters could also consider a bet on there being at least four goals in the game at 2/1.
Both teams have scored an average of exactly two goals in their last three matches, showing they are in good touch in front of goal.
And with this in mind, the best bet could be on Norwich to win a game with over 3.5 goals, which is available at the tempting price of 21/4.
A successful £25 free bet on Norwich to beat QPR with over 3.5 goals would return £156.25, with the free bet available to new customers who sign up for a bwin account.
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