Match Preview | QPR vs. Cardiff City
City face Queens Park Rangers on the weekend, and will be aiming to climb the Championship table with a victory.
The Bluebirds travel to the Kiyan Prince Foundation Stadium on Saturday, kicking-off at 3pm in west London.
How do I watch the match?
Match Passes can be purchased from Cardiff City TV in order to watch Saturday’s match, and are available for £10. Cardiff City TV’s multi-camera production includes a pre-match show, commentary and replays.
Supporters in the UK & Ireland can also purchase a Commentary Pass for £5 a month, or for just £45 for the entire 2020/21 campaign.
City fans overseas can purchase an individual Match Pass for £7, or a monthly Video Pass for £20. International supporters can tune into the Bluebirds’ matches with a seasonal Live Video Pass for just £140.
Harris pre-QPR | We will go from strength to strength
Prior to this weekend’s fixture, Bluebirds boss Neil Harris spoke virtually to the press and media, explaining the collective aim within the squad to turn draws into wins.
“The importance of that first goal is something we have talked about as a group. It's about being creative, taking our chances and having the best players on the pitch to be able to do that, but also having that mentality to keep a clean sheet as well.
“I wouldn't say I'm happy at the moment, as I want us to be winning games. It's always nice to look at the league table when you're in a healthier position. But I see improvement in us, and I know that once we get that settled squad, we will go from strength to strength.”
Opposition Focus: The boss
Mark Warburton began his playing career with Leicester City in 1977, but did not make a first team appearance for the Foxes during his time at the club. In 1981 he returned home to north London, dropping into non-league to sign for Enfield. In his first season at the club, Warburton helped the E’s to lift the FA Trophy, beating Altrincham in the Final at Wembley. He tasted league success a year later, as Enfield won the Alliance Premier League title in 1983. In 1985, Warburton moved to Boreham Wood, spending three years at Meadow Park.
Following a stint as the Academy Manager at Watford, Warburton was appointed as Brentford’s First Team Coach in 2011. After a few months, he was promoted to the role of Sporting Director, and then became the club’s manager in December 2013. In his first season in charge at Griffin Park, Warburton secured automatic promotion to the Championship, losing just four matches. The following year, he led the Bees to the Championship play-offs, but left the club at the end of the 2014-15 campaign. His next job came at Rangers, with whom he won a league and cup double, lifting the Scottish Challenge Cup and securing the club’s return to the Scottish Premiership. After a brief spell with Nottingham Forest in 2017, where he ensured the Reds’ survival in the Championship through goal difference alone, Warburton arrived at Queens Park Rangers in 2019, finishing in 13th position last term.
Ahead of Saturday’s clash, Warburton told the press and media: “I have huge respect for Neil and the job he did last season, getting Cardiff into the play-offs. They have [Kieffer] Moore up top and if it isn’t him then it is [Robert] Glatzel, or the pair of them.
“We know what we’ll face against Cardiff – a very good team and a very physical test – and we have to make sure that we roll our sleeves up and deliver a performance They are very good at what they do, and we have to meet that challenge.”
Opposition Focus: Season so far
The R’s have not tasted victory since the opening day of the season, and sit in nineteenth place ahead of the weekend’s fixtures. Since an impressive 2-0 home win against Nottingham Forest, Rangers have lost three and drawn four of their previous seven Championship matches. A 3-2 defeat to Coventry City was followed by three consecutive draws, against Middlesbrough, Sheffield Wednesday and Bournemouth.
QPR have not been on the scoresheet since they shared the points with the Owls on October 3rd. Following a goalless stalemate against Bournemouth, Rangers lost 2-0 at home to Preston North End, drew 0-0 with Birmingham City, and suffered a 3-0 defeat at the hands of Barnsley, who duly leapfrogged them in the Championship table.
The club saw a number of key players leave the Kiyan Prince Foundation Stadium over the summer, including homegrown talent Ebere Eze, who joined Crystal Palace, and left-back Ryan Manning, who signed for Swansea City. Rangers did make several signings, however, including promising defender Rob Dickie, striker Lyndon Dykes, and former Bluebirds loanee, Albert Adomah.
Opposition Focus: Ones to watch
Following the summer departure of their aforementioned prized asset, Ebere Eze, there has been much transfer attention owed to winger Bright Osayi-Samuel (pictured above). The twenty-two-year-old, who scored five Championship goals last term, has netted once so far this season, after rejecting a summer move to Club Brugge. Osayi-Samuel missed the midweek loss at Oakwell due to ongoing contract negotiations, but manager Mark Warburton told the press that he hopes to have the playmaker back in his squad for the visit of the Bluebirds.
Having scored on his debut during the win against Nottingham Forest, Lyndon Dykes made an excellent first impression to Rangers fans. Signed from Livingston in July, the Scottish international also scored in the defeat to Coventry City, placing himself at the top of the club’s scoring charts. Having missed a few matches in mid-October, Dykes has returned to the fold for the R’s previous two games, and will be looking to add to his early-season tally.
Twenty-three-year-old defender Osman Kaykay has cemented his place in Mark Warburton’s starting lineup this term. Since signing his first professional contract with the club in 2015, Kaykay has enjoyed loan spells at Livingston, Chesterfield and Partick Thistle, making only a handful of Championship appearances for the R’s. However, this season, the attack-minded right-back has started all eight of Rangers’ league fixtures, playing the full 90 minutes in each. The Sierra Leone international also played in QPR’s Carabao Cup loss to Plymouth, scoring his first goal for the club in a 3-2 defeat.