Even at this early stage of the season, Sunday lunchtime's live Premier League match looks like the proverbial relegation 'six pointer' as QPR take on Reading at Loftus Road. Neither side has tasted victory in the top-flight so far but Reading did win 3-2 when they played QPR here in the Capital One Cup in September and they will hope to do likewise this weekend.
It is QPR who start the match as 5/6 favourites with William Hill though and anything other than a win would really crank up the pressure on manager Mark Hughes. Reading go into the match as a 16/5 chance, while the draw is priced 13/5, although it is Rangers who could take a valuable three points after a dramatic week of football.
Reading have endured a tough week as they went 4-0 up against Arsenal in the fourth round of the Capital One Cup on Tuesday before eventually losing 7-5 after extra-time. The match and the manner of the defeat will have taken a lot out of the Reading players and QPR will look to take full advantage. It could take some time for Reading to get over that defeat, particularly as they let a lead slip for the fourth time in their last five games.
QPR are 15/4 to come from behind and win or draw on Sunday and the Premier League's basement club will be desperate for a win. Their performances have improved of late and it bodes well that their injury problems are starting to ease. All the pressure is on Rangers though and they will to have to start converting performances into points.
They were unlucky to lose 1-0 to Arsenal at the Emirates last weekend but they again shot themselves in the foot as Stephane Mbia got himself sent of unnecessarily. Discipline has been a real problem for QPR during the past couple of seasons and there looks to be the potential for a sending off in this huge fixture. Hills go 4/1 for a red card to be shown and that could be worth a punt as there have been five red cards in the last four QPR v Reading matches.
Scoring goals has been the biggest issue for QPR though as they have scored just four in their last six at home and their striker Bobby Zamora is 5/1 favourite to score first and improve that record. For a touch more value it could be worth backing Esteban Granero as the Spanish playmaker has been hugely impressive despite QPR's dismal form and he is available at 11/1.
Scoring goals hasn't been such a problem for Reading though as their last two matches have involved 18 goals following their 3-3 draw with Fulham and 7-5 defeat to Arsenal. Noel Hunt has scored three in his last three and is 8/1 to be first goalscorer with Hills but the main problem for Brian McDermott's team is keeping the opposition out. Reading's woeful defensive efforts could cost them dearly on Sunday and they could be set for yet more heartbreak as QPR look to justify favouritism for this basement battle.
QPR v Reading Form
Check the season's statistics for both QPR and Reading, plus the odds ahead of Sunday's match.
QPR v Reading Tips
Tip #1: QPR win @ 5/6 with WilliamHill.
Tip #2: Red card in the match @ 4/1 with WilliamHill.
Tip #3: Esteban Granero to score first each-way @ 11/1 with WilliamHill.
Correct Score Odds
7/1 QPR 1-0
17/2 QPR 2-0
15/2 QPR 2-1
11/1 Draw 0-0
13/2 Draw 1-1
14/1 Draw 2-2
12/1 Reading 1-0
22/1 Reading 2-0
12/1 Reading 2-1
First Goalscorer Odds
5/1 Bobby Zamora
5/1 Djibril Cisse
11/2 Adel Taarabt
6/1 David Hoilett
13/2 No Goalscorer
7/1 Pavel Pogrebnyak
8/1 Jamie Mackie
8/1 Noel Hunt
8/1 Jason Roberts
9/1 Shaun Wright-Phillips
9/1 Adam Le Fondre
11/1 Simon Church
Odds supplied by WilliamHill.com, who provide live betting in-running throughout the match.
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