There is no escaping it, QPR are now in a relegation dogfight and they need to put a run of results together quickly to put some distance between themselves and the bottom three.
Mark Warburton’s side currently sit just four points above the bottom three despite playing one game more than Rotherham in 22nd. That situation will become even more bleak if they lose on Monday night. Watford, on the other hand, are very much in the hunt for automatic promotion and a run of 10 points from their last four games has allowed them to keep pace with those above them.
Monday 19:45 – Watford v QPR
Sky Sports Main Event / Sky Sports Football
Watford have lost just once at Vicarage Road all season and their home form has been instrumental in their promotion charge – which is the best in the Championship by a considerable distance. They have collected 13 points from their last available 15 at home and will be confident of making that 16 out of 18 against a struggling QPR.
QPR, to their credit, are unbeaten in their last five away games, winning their last two away games impressively at Luton and Cardiff. Their away form this season has been generally poor however, and their short run should come to an end on Monday.
Troy Deeney may have only scored his first league goal of the season at the end of November, but he has been making up for lost time ever since. The veteran striker has scored in five of Watford’s last 10 league games, grabbing the opening goal on four occasions.
Five of his six league goals this season have been from the penalty spot, but Watford have won the joint-most penalties in the league this term and have taken the lead from the spot in four of their last nine games.
Meanwhile, QPR have conceded six spot kicks this season and could offer Deeney another opportunity to give his side the lead. In the event that Watford don’t get a penalty, Deeney is still good from open play despite his paltry return this season.
The Hornets’ defensive record at home has improved significantly in recent weeks following a relatively shaky start to the campaign.
They have conceded just one goal in their last five at Vicarage Road compared to eight from their opening eight home games of the season, and they should continue that impressive record against a QPR side that has managed just 23 goals in the league all season.
Watford boast the second-best defensive record in the league and should have little trouble keeping Rangers at bay in what should be a comfortable home win.
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