Liverpool vs Queens Park Rangers - Competition: English Premier League
Liverpool still hold slim hopes of reaching the top 4 despite falling to a catastrophic defeat on Monday. Hull City stifled the Reds at the KC Stadium, taking all of the spoils in a 1:0 shutout despite Liverpool enjoying 69% of the possession and having 9 shots on target. Now the Merseysiders sit at 7 points adrift 4th place, and with just 4 matches remaining, the gap is likely too large to make up by season’s end.
However, there is still all to play for here as Liverpool still need to at least qualify for the UEL, and their guaranteed spot has come under threat from both Spurs and Southampton. The hosts hold a tentative 1-point lead on the Saints while sitting even on points with the Spurs, and they’ll know that any slip-up now could see their season end in catastrophic fashion. 7th place may yet come open for a Europa League qualification spot if Arsenal win the F.A. Cup Final later this month, but Brendan Rodgers will want to avoid any further late season drama. He will take confidence from the fact that the hosts have won 6 of their last 7 encounters with Queens Park Rangers in the Premier League and their last 3 in a row. Furthermore, they are unbeaten in their last 7 meetings at Anfield against the visitors, with their last 3 meetings there all ending in 1:0 wins for the hosts.
QPR team are playing well right now but aren’t picking up the points they desperately need. While they have gone unbeaten in 3 of their last 4 Premier League outings, they have only picked up 5 total points, and last weekend’s 0:0 draw could come back to haunt them in the end. They outclassed West Ham on the day but simply couldn’t find a way to hit the back of the net despite seeing 7 of their 18 shots hit the target. Charlie Austin will be kicking himself after missing a crucial penalty kick in the 23rd minute, but it’s important the Englishman has a short memory here and produces some magic at Anfield.
However, the fact remains that QPR’s goalscoring struggles have returned in the last 2 weeks, and while they did hit 2 past the Reds in their first meeting this season, they were at home and will face a side that has conceded just 5 total goals over their last 8 competitive matches at Anfield. In addition, Queens Park Rangers have managed to score just 3 goals in their last 7 away games against the Merseyside club. They have lost 13 of their 16 Premier League road matches this season, and considering the fact that they continue to struggle with their defensive work away from home (most away goals conceded in the Premier League), things are not looking good for their survival chances as the season’s end draws near.
Liverpool: Mignolet – Emre Can, Skrtel, Lovren – Johnson, Henderson, Allen, Lallana – Markovic, Sterling, Coutinho.
Queens Park Rangers: Green – Onuoha, Caulker, Dunne, Yoon – Phillips, Sandro, Barton, Fer – Zamora, Austin.
Match date: 2 May 2015
Kick Off Time: 15:00 BST
Kick Off Time: 15:00 BST
Venue: Anfield, Liverpool