Tag Archives: QPR

Premier League, Week 38 Game of the Week

18 May

Recap: Newcastle’s horrible slide continues, as they lost 1-2 at Loftus Road to lowly, and newly relegated Queens Park Rangers. Fear not though you Magpies. A draw or loss by Hull City, regardless of your own outcome against West Ham United, will ensure your safety in the Premier League next season.

This Week:

Hull City Tigers vs Manchester United

Hull City Tigers vs Manchester United

Sunday, May 24th, 9am CDT, KC Stadium

Why This Game Is Intriguing: With the Premier League title already decided (Chelsea), and 2 of the 3 relegation spots secured (Burnley and QPR), all eyes will be on the Hull City Tigers, who literally are in a must-win situation. A loss or a draw to Manchester United (a likely scenario), will ensure the Tigers of relegation back to the Championship. Hull is led by Nikica Jelavic with 8 goals, and midfielder Ahmed Elmohamady with 5 assists, but overall lack the quality to really compete in the Premiership.

Other Reasons to Watch this Match: Mission accomplished for Louis van Gaal and his Manchester United Red Devils. After a disastrous season last year under David Moyes where the club finished 7th and out of European competition, Manchester United, after a bit of a rough start to the season, have managed a guaranteed top 4 finish and Champions League bid. They have taken down their rivals in Liverpool and in Manchester City en route to 69 points through 37 games played. Despite abysmal performances and injury concerns to strikers Robin van Persie and Radamal Falcao, van Gaal has been part of  and responsible for a resurgence of players such as Ashley Young, Marouane Fellaini, and Chris Smalling. Going forward, this club has a nice mix of youth and experience, and knowing how Manchester United spends, adding Memphis Depay among what are sure to be other key transfers, will see this club competing for the Premier League title next season.

Soccahaus Prediction: Bye Bye Tigers. Manchester United 2, Hull City 1

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Premier League Week 37 Game of the Week

12 May

Recap: I predicted correctly; a low scoring, 1-1 draw in which Chelsea celebrated its league victory in front of their home fans. Eden Hazard scored in the first half, but it was none other than Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard who scored the tying goal off of a set piece in the second half.

This Week: 

Queens Park Rangers vs Newcastle United

Queens Park Rangers vs Newcastle United

Saturday, May 19th, 9am CDT Loftus Road

Why This Game is Intriguing: Because if you are a QPR fan, this is your last home game of the season, and your last home game in the Premier League, that is, until you are likely promoted once again next season. QPR has been officially and mathematically relegated (along with Burnley), though QPR has a long history of promotion and relegation into and out of the Premier League. QPR’s hopes were slim last weekend: they desperately needed a David vs Goliath result against defending champions Manchester City on the road to have any chance of remaining in the Premier League. They were crushed in convincing fashion, 0-6 at the Etihad. QPR’s best player, Charlie Austin, had an incredible season carrying this club with 17 goals- and you can be assured that he will be swapping his horizontal blue and white stripes for another kit in England’s top flight: he is simply too good to be playing the Championship next season.

Other Reasons to Watch This Game: Newcastle cannot afford a loss, or really even a draw here against an inferior opponent in QPR, if they wish to remain in Premier League. Newcastle finds itself just 1 place above the relegation zone, and just 2 points ahead of Hull City for that final relegation spot. A Newcastle loss to QPR combined with a Hull City win over Tottenham would force Newcastle to be in a must win situation in the season’s final week against a challenging West Ham United. The Magpies have not won a match since February 28th against Aston Villa, losing their following 8 straight matches in a row before drawing West Brom this past weekend. Newcastle is a big club with an enormous fan base, huge stadium, and mega brand. They have a whole lot to lose in this game against QPR if the club isn’t focused on earning all 3 points.

Soccahaus Prediction: For all of Newcastle’s problems and bad run of form, they are simply better than QPR. Newcastle win 3-1.

English Premier League, Week 10 Game of the Week

3 Nov

Recap: The Manchester Derby was not nearly as high scoring as I had predicted, rendering just 1 goal from Kun Aguero in the 2nd half. United were forced to play a man down for the entire 2nd half after Chris Smalling earned 2 yellow cards for overaggressive challenges. United played extremely well given the circumstances, but it was not enough to overcome their hated rivals.

This Week: 

Liverpool FC vs Chelsea FC

Liverpool FC vs Chelsea FC

Saturday, November 8th, 6:45pm CST Anfield

Why This Game is Intriguing: Chelsea is flying high and leading the league as they continue to win under skipper Jose Mourinho. Despite their undefeated record, Chelsea’s last 3 matches have not come easy: A close 2-1 win over QPR at home, a draw at Old Trafford against Manchester United, and a 2-1 victory at Selhurst Park against London rivals Crystal Palace. Combine that with their Champions League campaign- the Blues must continue to withstand injuries and a loaded schedule in order to win the Premier League. They have the talent, depth, and motivation to achieve these goals (because they went trophyless last season)- so it will be interesting to see how they hold up come spring time.

Other Reasons to Watch This Game: Liverpool Football Club is struggling mightily, and their last 7 games have produced just 2 wins, including an ugly, thrilling win over QPR. Last week produced a heartbreaking loss at Newcastle United, where a defensive blip by Alberto Moreno in the box led to the only goal of the game for the Magpies. Italian striker Mario Balotelli has received a lot of criticism for Liverpool’s rough start- and even though he hasn’t performed well, the defense and weak midfield isn’t up to par. Missing Daniel Sturridge definitely hurts, and losing striker Luis Suarez to Barcelona, the Premier Leagues best player last season, clearly has a negative impact on the club as well. All that said, Anfield is a home ground that often inspires Liverp’ool to achieve the unexpected. A victory here, or a well fought draw is not out of the question given the fact that Liverpool are at home.

Soccahaus Prediction: Chelsea 2, Liverpool 1

English Premier League, Week 34 Game of the Week

23 Apr

Recap of Last Week: In what was one of the most thrilling games of the year, the Spurs came back to beat 2nd place Manchester City by a score of 3-1. City scored their first goal early in the 5′ (Nasri), but Tottenham went on a ridiculous run, starting with American Clint Dempsey’s goal in the 75′, followed by Defoe 79′, and capped off by none other than Gareth Bale in the 82′. Also, a word of note- yesterday, April 22nd, Manchester United clinched the Premier League title. Congrats to the Red Devils.

This Week: 

Arsenal FC vs Manchester United

Arsenal FC vs Manchester United

Sunday, April 28th, 10am (CST) Emirates Stadium

Why This Game is Intriguing: This is going to be a wild, wild finish in the EPL because at this point, teams 3,4, and 5 are separated by just one point each. So for this preview, I realistically could have chosen to cover Chelsea (playing Swansea) or Tottenham (playing Wigan), but this game appears to be the best matchup come game day. These 2 clubs last played each other back on November 3rd- a 2-1 victory for Man U led by goals from former Arsenal star Robin Van Persie 3′ and Patrice Evra 67′. With the title already in hand, how will Sir Alex Ferguson manage his club for the remaining 4 games of the season? Do some games, like this one against long time rival Arsenal, mean more than say Man U’s last two games against Swansea and West Brom?

Other Reasons to Watch This Game: The Gunners are in great form, and if Arsenal can get through this game even with a draw, there is a great chance Arsenal doesn’t lose a game the rest of the season. Arsenal has not lost a game since the North London Derby back on March 3rd, and after this match against Man U, Arsenal’s remaining schedule includes QPR, Wigan, and Newcastle. Arsenal, currently in 3rd place, is just 5 points behind 2nd place Manchester City, and is 1 point ahead of Chelsea and 2 points ahead of Tottenham. The key players for the Gunners in this match will be Santi Cazorla (leads the club in goals with 12) and Theo Walcott (leads the club in assists with 10). Going up against former teammate Robin Van Persie will be tough, as the Dutchman is coming off one of his most spectacular performances of his entire career, scoring a 1st half hattrick to seal the Premier League title last Monday against Aston Villa.

Soccahaus Prediction: Arsenal 2, Manchester United 1

Other Games This Week Worth Watching: Man City vs West Ham, Tottenham vs Wigan, Everton vs Fulham, Newcastle vs Liverpool, Chelsea vs Swansea

English Premier League, Week 29 Game of the Week

26 Mar

Recap of Two Weeks Ago: We are back after a week off because of international play. In what was an incredibly exciting, hard fought game between two teams at the bottom of the EPL, Aston Villa came away with the win, beating last place QPR by a score of 3-2. The back and forth affair was eventually settled by none other than Belgian international Christian Benteke in the 81′.

This Week: 

Swansea City vs Tottenham Hotspur

Swansea City vs Tottenham Hotspur

Saturday, March 30th, 10AM (CST) Liberty Stadium

Why This Game Is Intriguing: I’m going to call this game a must-win for the Spurs if they want to remain in the top 4 and earn a Champions League bid. Why? Not only have the Spurs lost their last 2 games in a row (at Liverpool and vs Fulham), but the upcoming schedule for the North London club after this match against Swansea is absolutely brutal. Now, Swansea is a fantastic club, especially this season, but the next 3 games after this for Spurs are: vs Everton, at Chelsea, and then vs Manchester City. For a club reeling from 2 defeats and clamoring to stay in the group of England’s elite, this game against a high powered Swansea team is huge. In those two losses, Gareth Bale has not scored a single goal. The Spurs are at their best when their superstar Welshman is leading the attack scoring goals.

Other Reasons to Watch This Game: 11th place Swansea is looking for a home win against one of the top teams in England in the Tottenham Hotspur. Like the Spurs, Swansea is on a bit of a losing streak of their own, losing their last two games (vs Arsenal and at West Brom) by a combined score of 1-4. Swansea is led by Spanish international star Michu, who leads the team 15 goals, although he hasn’t scored a goal in the last 4 games. Swansea’s back line is anchored by Ashley Williams, the captain of the Wales National team. Williams is an incredibly athletic defender, and his leadership has propelled Swansea to a solid standing in the Premier League, as well as a victory for the Capital One Cup over Bradford City.

Soccahaus Prediction: Spurs 3, Swansea 1

Other Games This Week Worth Watching: Manchester City vs Newcastle, Arsenal vs Reading, Southampton vs Chelsea, West Ham vs West Brom, Everton vs Stoke City, Aston Villa vs Liverpool

English Premier League, Week 28 Game of the Week

13 Mar

Recap of Last Week: In a matchup between two of the hottest teams in England, featuring arguably the two best players in England in Luis Suarez and Gareth Bale, the home side (Liverpool) came away with the close 3-2 victory thanks to goals by Suarez 21′, Downing 66′, and Gerrard 82′ PEN. Liverpool continues to climb up the table as they are now in 6th place, while Tottenham maintains their 3rd place position.

Aston Villa vs Queens Park Rangers

Aston Villa vs Queens Park Rangers

Saturday, March 16th, 10AM (CST) Villa Park

Why This Game is Intriguing: Believe it or not, QPR is on a winning streak! The London based club has won their last two games, their first such winning streak in the Premier League this season. They beat Sunderland 3-1 at home last week, and beat Southampton 2-1 the week before at St. Mary’s Stadium. QPR is, and has been at the very bottom of the Premier League table for pretty much the entirety of this season, but this last string of wins, combined with the collapses of clubs like Reading (losers of their last 4 games in a row, including a loss to Aston Villa) and Southampton (only won two Premier League games this calendar year), is forcing people around the league to believe that QPR will be remain in the top flight of English soccer next season.

Other Reasons to Watch This Game: Aston Villa is currently just one spot ahead of relegation zone, and based on their recent string of results, are in real danger of being relegated to the 2nd division of English soccer for the 1st time since the late 1980’s. The club from Birmingham is just 3 points ahead of Wigan Athletic, and a win here against QPR would go a long way towards providing some much needed cushion between themselves and the relegation zone. Aston Villa will have the best player on the pitch, regardless of team, in Christian Benteke. The Belgian international leads his team in goals with 12, and is tied for tops on his team in assists with 4. Benteke provides a spark and intimidating flashiness to go along with his natural abilities as an attacking footballer- and is without a doubt the most beloved player on Aston Villa. Look for Benteke to cause some serious problems for QPR’s weak back line.

Soccahaus Prediction: 2-2 draw

Other Games This Week Worth Watching: Everton vs Manchester City, Swansea vs Arsenal, Southampton vs Liverpool, Manchester United vs Reading, Tottenham vs Fulham, Chelsea vs West Ham

English Premier League, Week 25 Game of the Week

19 Feb

Recap of Two Weeks Ago: In what was a relatively easy game for Manchester United, the Red Devils beat a solid Everton team to go ahead 12 points in the league. After Manchester City’s stumble against Southampton, I expected Manchester United to take full advantage of the opportunity to stretch their lead in the league to double digits. Manchester United won by a score of 2-0, thanks to first half goals by Ryan Giggs 13′, and Robin Van Persie 45′.

This Week:

Manchester City FC vs Chelsea FC

Manchester City FC vs Chelsea FC

Sunday, February 24th, 7:30AM (CST) Etihad Stadium

Why This Game is Intriguing: Take a minute to swallow this: Second place Manchester City has not won a premier league game in over a month. City’s last three premier league games have been compete disasters, including a 0-0 draw to last place QPR, a 2-2 draw to the inconsistent Reds of Liverpool, and a 3-1 defeat at Southampton. Aside from City’s success thus far in the FA Cup, most English Premier League fans believed, especially given this club’s talent, that last year’s league title win was no fluke. 2nd place City is only 4 points ahead of Chelsea heading into this matchup, meanwhile 4th place Tottenham Hotspur is right on Chelsea’s tail, only trailing by one point in the standings.

Other Reasons to Watch This Game: The defending Champions League title winners are still fighting to secure a birth in next year’s tournament, and earning 3 points at the Etihad will go a long way towards attaining that goal. Chelsea’s 3 headed monster of Eden Hazard, Oscar, and Juan Mata continues to grow and improve as the season moves along under manager Rafa Benitez. The English Premier League season is finished to the extent that Manchester United’s 12 point lead will be not be overcome- but spots 2,3, and 4 are all very much up for grabs, with Chelsea and Manchester City in prime position to earn two of those spots. After Manchester City’s loss to Southampton, some of the Fox Soccer reporters observed that several of City’s players had seemingly given up on their manager Roberto Mancini. Rafa Benitez too has received a great deal of criticism since he took over the Chelsea position. Both of these coaches hot seats could become a lot cooler with a win in this matchup.

Soccahaus Prediction: Chelsea 3, Manchester City 1

Other Games This Week Worth Watching: Norwich vs Everton, QPR vs Man U, Arsenal vs Aston Villa, Liverpool vs Swansea, Newcastle vs Southampton, West Ham vs Tottenham