Sunday 15 January 2012 1.30pm
It’s never ideal to play a team when they’ve just appointed a new manager but….surely it shouldn’t make any difference on Sunday.
After grinding out some canny results early on, the visitors are now dropping like a stone.
The last eight Premier League matches have seen the Loftus Road outfit rack up six losses and two draws. On top of those statistics they have lost the influential Taarabt and talented left-back Traore to the African Cup Of Nations, while midfielder Faurlin is out injured and of course our old mate Joey Barton got himself suspended.
Macheda has been brought in on loan from the Mancs but we shouldn’t be running scared of a very average striker, while if Wright-Phillips makes an appearance I’d have every confidence in Santon taking care of him, unlike Raylor’s nightmare at Loftus Road.
So that leaves them with 34 year old Sean Derry as their only available first choice midfielder and he hasn’t scored a goal in his fifty eight matches for the West London club.
I almost forgot to mention….Kieron Dyer is injured and probably out for the season but that is not exactly news.
Yes United might be missing Ba and Tiote to the African Nations but this surely must rank as our easiest fixture in the remaining games. Yes there are no easy games blah blah blah and yes that miserable horrible Mark Hughes is their newly appointed manager but this will be three points all the way.
I would guess Alan Pardew will pair either Best or Shola (take your pick) up front with Ben Arfa, unless the manager looks to change his formation and accommodate Hatem on the right, ‘kind of’ in Obertan’s position. Whilst if Guthrie is in decent shape he seems pretty certain to partner Cabaye in centre midfield.
The bookies aren’t daft and so we’ve had to dig deep to find some value and thanks to our betting partners BET365 we think we have found a few decent pointers.
We fancy Newcastle to win both halves against a hopefully demoralised QPR by half time and that would pay 7-2. A bit more speculative is a small wager on Ben Arfa to score first and Newcastle to win 2-0 which would pay 30-1. The French midfielder/winger/striker must be nailed on to start as he has begun to find the net and must be fancied to make it three scoring matches in a row.
The final fancy that we’ve picked out of the BET365 odds is Jonas to score the first goal at 20-1, he’s become very adventurous of late and as well as his cracking winner against Blackburn he’s actually been pulling the trigger himself regularly and getting in the box a lot more.