Match Preview | Queens Park Rangers vs. Cardiff City
Cardiff City travel to Queens Park Rangers’ Loftus Road on New Year’s Day, 3pm KO.
Away tickets for this fixture have sold out. Thank you for your amazing support, Bluebirds!
OPPOSITION FOCUS | IN THE DUGOUT
Queens Park Rangers’ manager is Martí Cifuentes, who was appointed back in October following the departure of previous boss Gareth Ainsworth.
Cifuentes began his managerial career in his native Spain, having spells at Rubí, Sant Andreu and L’Hospitalet.
The 41-year-old then managed in Scandinavia, firstly with Norwegian side Sandefjord, spending two years with the Eliteserien club and leading them to their best result in eleven years, finishing the 2019/20 season 11th in the top-tier.
Cifuentes has also gained experience in Denmark with AaB, but spent just a year at the helm, departing halfway through the 2021/22 campaign with the club in fourth.
The Spaniard had a spell managing in Sweden with Hammarby IF, who he led to UEFA Europa Conference League qualification.
Since taking over at Loftus Road, Cifuentes has won three of his 11 matches in charge.
OPPOSITION FOCUS | SEASON SO FAR
The R’s have had a disappointing campaign so far, currently sitting 22nd in the Sky Bet Championship table.
Cifuentes’ side arrive in South Wales without a win in their last five matches, suffering defeats in December to Sheffield Wednesday, Southampton and Millwall.
Last time out, Rangers travelled to Ipswich Town’s Portman Road and recorded a goalless draw.
In terms of their home record, the side have won just two of their 11 matches at Loftus Road this season, a record that ranks last in the division.
OPPOSITION FOCUS | KEY PLAYER
QPR’s most dangerous player is Ilias Chair, who has been with the R’s in 2017.
Since then, the playmaker has made an impression and is nearing 200 league appearances for the club.
In the Sky Bet Championship this season, Chair has found the net on two occasions, also contributing with four assists.
The attacking midfielder also boasts experience at international level, having represented Morocco 12 times.
CLUB CONNECTION | JAY BOTHROYD
Striker Jay Bothroyd joined the Bluebirds in 2008 from Wolverhampton Wanderers and went on to have a hugely prolific spell in the Welsh capital.
Forming a brilliant partnership with fellow attacker Michael Chopra, Bothroyd netted double figures in the league in all of his three seasons at the Club.
His third campaign as a Bluebird was his most prolific, as he contributed with 18 goals in the second-tier season.
Catching the eye of Queens Park Rangers, Bothroyd moved to the Premier League side in 2011.
The striker made 25 appearances for the club, scoring three times, the first of which coming against eventual title-winners Manchester City.