Preston v QPR
Wednesday February 24, 19:45
Preston suffer in the Welsh capital
Preston boss Alex Neil described his side’s 4-0 defeat to Cardiff on Saturday as a ‘harsh lesson’ and a ‘sore one’. The Lilywhites had a terrible time in South Wales, conceding in the first minute of both the first and second halves, whilst at 2-0 down, North End missed a pair of penalties in quick succession as they looked for a route back into the contest.
Cardiff took full advantage of that let-off, and of some poor defending in the Lilywhites ranks, to go on and score two more goals. And Neil felt PNE were the authors of their own downfall, losing possession in the build-up to the first two goals and then squandering the chance to get back into the game with the penalties.
Post-match, Neil said: “The game finished 4-0 but it didn’t feel like a 4-0, not in a million years. I’ve been involved in them where one team is very dominant, but we caused our own problems. If you make those mistakes at this level, then you won’t give yourself an opportunity to get anything from the game. It’s a harsh lesson and a sore one to take.”
QPR continue upward momentum
QPR manager Mark Warburton feels his team have proved their doubters wrong with their recent upturn in results. Todd Kane‘s late winner against Bournemouth on Saturday gave Rangers a fourth consecutive victory, and sixth Championship success in seven outings this calendar year to move 10 points clear of the relegation zone.
On-loan midfielder Stefan Johansen had fired Rangers into a 58th-minute lead, pouncing on a defensive error to open the scoring. The Cherries hit back 10 minutes later before Kane drilled home seven minutes from time to seal the points, meaning the R’s recent victories have come against promotion candidates Bournemouth, Brentford, Blackburn and Watford.
Warburton said, “When you look at Watford, Blackburn, Brentford and Bournemouth, I don’t think people would have given us much chance of taking many points out of that run, so the boys have done very well. But again the boys have stood up, stuck to the gameplan, have worked hard and shown quality and created chances against a very good team.”
Preston have posted W7-D3-L2 in head-to-head meetings with QPR since 2010, including a cushy 2-0 triumph in the two teams’ reverse match-up back in October. The Lilywhites’ only defeats in that sample came during last season’s campaign and that includes North End’s only reverse in 14 Deepdale dates with Rangers dating back to 1980 (W7-D6-L1).
Only two Championship clubs are posting a lower points per-game return on home soil than Preston 2.8815/8 this season. The Lilywhites have managed only W4-D2-L9 at Deepdale, last losing more home league games in their 2010/11 relegation campaign. Alex Neil’s troops have managed a solitary goal across their last four encounters at league hosts (W0-D1-L3).
QPR 2.789/5 have won six of their first seven league games in 2021, their best start to a calendar year since 1961. The Hoops have been beaten just three times since the beginning of December (W6-D4-L3), with Mark Warburton’s men returning W3-D3-L0 on the road during their resurgent run, the club’s best unbeaten spell on their travels since 2010.
Deepdale hasn’t been the most reliable base for goal-heavy games in the Championship. Only 5/15 (33%) matches have featured Over 2.5 Goals 2.001/1 as contests have produced a tally of only 1.80 goals per-game, whilst at least one team has failed to score in 12 of those 15 home tussles – PNE themselves firing blanks in over half of their home fixtures.
QPR’s improvements have been visible in both boxes. However, the guests have solidified their defensive foundations and kept opponents to no more than a solitary strike in their 13-game spell since December. Ten of those tussles paid out for Under 2.5 Goals 1.758/11 backers.
I’m therefore happy to support Rangers in the Double Chance market alongside Under 3.5 Goals for an appalling 1.804/5 shot on Wednesday night via the Same Game Multi. It’s proven profitable in nine of the Hoops’ 14 away days this term, as well as 10 of Preston’s 15 Deepdale matches in 2020/21.