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Preview: Queens Park Rangers vs. Blackburn Rovers - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Saturday's Championship clash between Queens Park Rangers and Blackburn Rovers, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Blackburn Rovers will have the Championship top six in their sights when they travel to Queens Park Rangers on Saturday.

Rovers are currently in eighth and just three points off the playoff positions, while QPR sit in 17th position, four points above the relegation zone.


Match preview

Adam Armstrong celebrates scoring for Blackburn Rovers on September 19, 2020© Reuters

Blackburn started 2021 in mid-table and eight points adrift of the playoff spots, but a run of good form, combined with Bournemouth's recent slump, means they could now break into the top six, and they also have a game in hand over the Cherries and seventh-placed Middlesbrough.

Rovers have won three out of their last four games and kept clean sheets in all of those victories, most recently beating Luton Town 1-0 last weekend.

Adam Armstrong scored his 17th league goal of the campaign in the 85th minute against the Hatters, proving not for the first time this season that the Lancashire side have a knack of grinding out results.

A goal difference of +13 also helps their cause in the playoff race, largely down to their 41 goals scored – the second most in the division behind Brentford. Meanwhile, no team has scored more goals away from home than Blackburn (21).

Queens Park Rangers QPR manager Mark Warburton pictured in December 2020© Reuters

Rovers have won six of their last seven meetings with QPR and have only lost once to the Hoops in their 18 encounters this century; Tony Mowbray's side were 3-1 winners in the reverse fixture at Ewood Park in November.

Thet defeat marked the start of a run of just one win in 12 games for the West London side, but they have turned their form around in recent weeks.

Like Blackburn, QPR have won three out of their last four matches, with their 2-1 victory away to promotion-pushing Watford on Monday being the most impressive of the lot.

Mark Warburton's side had to come from behind against the Hornets, with the winning goal from Albert Adomah – his first for the club – arriving in the 90th minute.

QPR now return to the Kiyan Prince Foundation Stadium, where they have lost five out of their last six games and not won since November.

Queens Park Rangers Championship form: LDWWLW
Queens Park Rangers form (all competitions): DLWWLW

Blackburn Rovers Championship form: DLWDWW
Blackburn Rovers form (all competitions): LWLDWW


Team News

Blackburn Rovers manager Tony Mowbray pictured in December 2020© Reuters

Warburton could name the same team that started against Watford, but the QPR boss says he is keeping an eye on the fitness of new signings Stefan Johansen and Charlie Austin, as well as Lee Wallace, who has just returned from over a month on the sidelines.

Macauley Bonne is expected to be fit after coming off against Watford with cramp, while Lyndon Dykes should be back in the squad after missing the game at Vicarage Road due to a family member testing positive for coronavirus; deadline-day loan signing Sam Field may also play a part.

Blackburn have signed centre-back Taylor Harwood-Bellis on loan from Manchester City, but Mowbray may be hesitant to make changes to a defence that has looked solid in recent weeks.

Jacob Davenport missed the win over Luton with a hamstring problem but is expected to be back involved, while Bradley Dack and Sam Gallagher could come into the starting lineup.

Queens Park Rangers possible starting lineup:
Dieng; Dickie, Cameron, Barbet; Kane, Ball, Johansen, Wallace; Chair; Austin, Bonne

Blackburn Rovers possible starting lineup:
Kaminski; Nyambe, Lenihan, Braithwaite, Douglas; Travis, Rothwell, Dack; Elliott, Armstrong, Gallagher


SM words green background

We say: Queens Park Rangers 0-1 Blackburn Rovers

Both teams will be eager to continue their recent good form so a tightly-contested match should await. However, Blackburn's tight defence, combined with QPR's poor record on home turf, makes us think that the visitors will take the points here.


Top betting tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting under 3.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Under 3.5:data


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Queens Park Rangers QPR manager Mark Warburton pictured in December 2020
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Tuesday's key events


TRIATHLON
· Team GB trio Vicky Holland, Georgia Taylor-Brown and Jess Learmonth all have realistic medal hopes in the women's event (10.30pm-1am)

RUGBY SEVENS
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TAEKWONDO
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SWIMMING
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EQUESTRIAN
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