Four points adrift of safety with 14 league games remaining, QPR manager Harry Redknapp knows his side will have to start picking up wins fast, particularly at Loftus Road, if they are to stand any chance of retaining their top-flight status this season.
In the early kick-off on Saturday the Rs welcome Norwich City, who themselves are looking nervously over their shoulder as they occupy 14th position, seven points above the drop zone and without a win in seven league matches.
The two sides played out a 1-1 draw at Carrow Road earlier in the season, Simeon Jackson scoring early on to give the Canaries the lead, before Bobby Zamora reacted first to Djibril Cisse’s penalty miss to notch the equaliser shortly afterwards.
Rangers have been priced as odds-on favourites to secure just their third win of the campaign at 91/100, with the draw at 5/2, while a rare away success for Chris Hughton’s men can be backed at 14/5 in the bwin 3way football betting market.
QPR have become a very difficult outfit to beat in recent weeks and are undefeated in their last four league outings, securing a win over Chelsea at Stamford Bridge before claiming a share of the spoils against Tottenham, West Ham and Manchester City.
Their chances of survival were given a major boost with the addition of France international striker Loic Remy from Marseille, who bagged a goal on his debut against the Hammers at Upton Park and is the favourite to open the scoring at 9/2.
Since their 3-0 humiliation at home to Liverpool, in which the game was over by half-time, the Rs have improved drastically at the back, recording three clean sheets in their last four league games, including in a goalless draw at home to City in midweek.
Redknapp brought in former Blackburn defender Christopher Samba on transfer deadline day and they look an attractive price at 11/5 to win to nil against a Canaries side that have failed to score in three of their last four matches in all competitions.
Punters registering with bwin today can claim a free £20 bet and placing this on QPR to beat Norwich at Loftus Road without conceding would return a cool £64 if successful.
QPR’s mean defence in recent games has in large part been down to Julio Cesar, who has been in fantastic form in goal, making a number of crucial key saves – form which has earnt him a recall to the Brazil international squad for next week’s friendly against England.
Hughton’s side have a pretty dismal record on the road, picking up just one win in their last 14 matches away from home, while the Canaries have managed to record just one clean sheet in their last 45 Premier League away games.
Redknapp’s men haven’t been known for fast starts in games this season, going into the break leading on just two occasions, while 11 of their 18 goals have come in the second half, so a draw at half-time and QPR to be winning at full-time looks tempting at 17/4.
Rangers have come through a difficult run of games over the last month with some credible results and will face a different challenge this weekend as they’ll be expected to win against a Norwich side that are on a poor run of form.
However, it is a challenge I expect them to rise to and the two punts highlighted earlier – QPR to win to nil or to win after a drawn first half – are solid odds-against options which could pay off handsomely.