QPR Super Fan delivers lowdown ahead of West Brom clash
This is part of a regular series from our panel of Super Fans on upcoming West Brom fixtures. Ahead of Friday’s game against QPR, we spoke to @HoopsDreams_QPR, a QPR fansite.
West Brom welcome QPR to The Hawthorns on Friday night with both sides looking to arrest their three-game winless streak in the Championship.
The Hoops, just like Albion, got off to a flying start to the 2021/22 campaign, claiming victory in four of their first five matches.
However, the West London outfit have suffered back-to-back 2-1 defeats in the league, though a thrilling penalty shoot-out success over Everton in the League Cup on Tuesday should galvanise Mark Warburton’s troops.
Ahead of their visit to the West Midlands, we spoke to QPR fansite @HoopsDreams_QPR to gain a closer insight into tonight’s opponents.
What have you made of West Brom so far this season?
As expected – our pre-season prediction had you finishing as champions. Eight games in, I’ve not seen much to suggest you won’t be challenging for automatic promotion. The gulf between the Premier League and the Championship seems to be widening year on year, so when those teams come down it is now becoming rare for them to struggle. Look at Norwich; they romp to the title year after year and can barely get a point in the top tier.
You call it a winless run but you are still unbeaten so not much to complain about really! Plus only conceding seven goals in eight games is impressive. I always believe if you have a good defence you’ll do well, which is where QPR are falling short at the moment!
Anyone who QPR fans are fearful of from the Albion side?
Every bit of West Brom footage I’ve seen this season seems to involve our old friend Darnell Furlong launching long throws into the box. I am fearful of that, as it is never easy to defend against. The ball can go anywhere and suddenly teams concede from a nothing situation. We’ve had a former QPR player score against us in each of the last two matches so it is already in the script that you either score from a Furlong throw or via Matt Phillips!
I also thought Alex Mowatt was the best opposition player QPR faced last season and so you got the signing of the summer picking him up for free. I would have loved him at QPR so I am very fearful of him, especially if you get a free-kick outside the box as he scored one against us last season.
What have you made of your start to the season?
I’m happy but maybe feel we should be higher than we are. We’ve started the majority of the games very slowly and keep giving ourselves a mountain to climb. We play some of the best football in the league but as yet haven’t put together a 90-minute performance. I put together some stats that showed in first halves we rank 20th, with six points, only three scored with a minus-five goal difference. In second halves we rank first, with 18 points, 13 scored with plus-nine goal difference. That is some difference.
If matches started in the 46th minute we’d be walking the league. The problem is, we are usually 2-0 down by then! Only three teams have conceded more than us, which is odd because I rate all of our defenders (Rob Dickie is one of the best outside the top flight) and our goalkeeper Seny Dieng is often linked with a move away, but we look vulnerable every time the opposition come forward, especially when caught on the counter-attack. If we can resolve those defensive issues and keep believing in our style of play we definitely have the talent to finish in the top six. But we can’t keep shooting ourselves in the foot!
Chris Willock and Ilias Chair. They combine so well together and are improving all the time. They have great technique and vision and will cause any teams problems. Everton had real problems with them in the cup in midweek. If QPR don’t go up this season I think both of them will be moving up to the top flight regardless. Stefan Johansen is also vital to how we play; our best midfielder for many a year. If you stop him playing you massively impact how well QPR perform.