Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

QPR Must Be Bold If They're to Win the Battle for Survival

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

QPR Must Be Bold If They're to Win the Battle for Survival

Article excerpt

Byline: Simon Johnson Football Correspondent

THERE is nothing like a big away win to renew morale at a struggling club but the hard work for QPR has only just begun if they are to pull off the great escape.

The unexpected 4-1 success at West Brom is exactly the lift the club needed and manager Chris Ramsey hopes for another victory in the Midlands tonight when they take on fellow strugglers Aston Villa. It is the first of seven challenges remaining and Standard Sport identifies the key areas for QPR in their battle for survival.

ATTACK, ATTACK, ATTACK Scoring goals has not been the problem for QPR, it has been keeping them out at the other end.

Seven clubs, including Aston Villa, have found the net fewer times than Rangers, while Stoke sit in a comfortable 10th place in the League having matched the London side's tally of 35. Although statistics do not always tell the full story, the most damning, and damaging, one for QPR is that they have conceded 55 times in 31 games comfortably the worst record in the Premier League.

Ramsey has adopted a 4-4-2 formation in recent weeks and it certainly worked at the Hawthorns. QPR have only kept five clean sheets, so their best bet is to take the game to the opposition as they did on Saturday, rather than sit back and hope to nick something on the break. Naturally, a lot stills rests on top scorer Charlie Austin.

THE GREEN ISSUE Clearly, Rob Green will have a huge role to play in QPR's fortunes.

He has been one of the best goalkeepers in the Premier League this season, regularly competing with Manchester United's David de Gea for save of the weekend.

The 35-year-old's performances have not only earned him an England recall after three years out of the international game but also attracted the interest of Chelsea over a possible summer transfer.

QPR cannot afford for Green to become distracted over such things and need the former West Ham stopper to remain at his very best.

FORGET THE KIDS QPR want to utilise their academy more, which is refreshing and will certainly be music to the ears of FA chairman Greg Dyke. …

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