Preview: Queens Park Rangers vs. Aston Villa

Sports Mole previews the match between Queens Park Rangers and Aston Villa at Loftus Road.

Queens Park Rangers will be hoping that they can climb off the bottom of the Premier League table when they host Aston Villa at Loftus Road on Monday evening.

Harry Redknapp's men were sunk by a late winner in their 3-2 defeat to Liverpool last weekend, having seemingly come back for a draw twice inside the final five minutes.

The team's poor start to the season has resulted in speculation about Redknapp's future at the club, while the board has had to step in this week after the boss accused Adel Taarabt of being three stone overweight.

As a result, Taarabt is unlikely to feature this weekend, with Redknapp believing that he is not fit, while Joey Barton and Jordan Mutch are expected to need a late fitness test after missing the last few games with hamstring injuries.

Niko Kranjcar dropped to the bench last week while resting a broken toe, and goalkeeper Robert Green missed the match with tonsillitis, but both are thought to be ready for Monday's outing.

Meanwhile, Aston Villa will be keen to end a run of four straight defeats, a streak that has seen them slip to 12th in the table.

Paul Lambert's side have not found the back of the net in their last four matches, including during last weekend's 3-0 loss to Everton.

Philippe Senderos and Nathan Baker will both need late fitness tests ahead of the game, with Senderos still carrying a thigh problem that he picked up on international duty, while Baker was forced out at Goodison Park with a hamstring injury.

While Ron Vlaar and Christian Benteke have both recently returned from spells out injured, Lambert has confirmed that he is trying to ease them back to match fitness, so they could start on the bench.

When the sides last met in the 2012-13 season, Aston Villa claimed a home win, but were held to a 1-1 draw on their visit to Loftus Road.

Recent form

Queens Park Rangers: WLDLLL

Aston Villa: WWLLLL

Possible starting lineups

Queens Park Rangers: Green, Isla, Onuoha, Kranjcar, Caulker, Yung, Fer, Barton, Mutch, Sandro, Austin

Aston Villa: Guzan, Hutton, Baker, Senderos, Cissokho, N'Zogbia, Cleverley, Westwood, Richardson, Agbonlahor, Weimann

Sports Mole says: 2-1

Christian Benteke of Aston Villa celebrates after scoring a goal to level the scores at 1-1 during the Barclays Premier League match between Chelsea and Aston Villa at Stamford Bridge on August 21, 2013
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