Sports. Honestly. Since 2011

Why QPR are at the bottom of the Premier League

No team has begun the 2012-2013 Premier League campaign more poorly then QPR. The London side have been dismal in all areas and it is clear from the position they currently inhabit in the Premier League table. Even Reading, Norwich and Southampton, all clubs that are favorites to be relegated, have been superior thus far. And with Liverpool’s weekend victory against Norwich QPR no longer have any clubs at the bottom to deflect attention.

Whenever a club plays this poorly all heads turn directly to the schedule. This certainly was a factor for the Reds who began the season with West Brom, Manchester City, Arsenal, Sunderland and Manchester United before last weekend. For the majority of QPR’s matches this applies however this weekend’s loss to West Ham and their draw with Norwich which would have been a loss save for a penalty that never should have been given.

QPR came breathtakingly close to the drop last year but this time it was supposed to be different. No Premier League club was more active in the summer transfer window then Rangers. Not only did they bring in plenty of diverse players they also brought in several Premier League house hold names. It began in July when QPR added Park Ji-Sung from Manchester United. They then added Jose Bosingwa and Julio Cesar to cap off a summer that also saw them acquire highly coveted Blackburn Rovers winger Junior Hoilett and Esteban Granero.

With all of these additions it seemed impossible that the club would be the worst in the league after 6 weeks of action. Yet Rangers have suffered from both poor play and confusing management. Mark Hughes has been criticized by many and for good reason yet so far he has been defended publicly by Rangers’ management. This must change if QPR wish to achieve anything other then a fight to stay afloat this season.

Hughes has made several astoundingly poor tactical decisions this campaign including using Andy Johnson alongside Bobby Zamora, both of whom play the same role. Meanwhile on the bench are Junior Hoilett and Adel Taarabt, creative attacking players who would be far better in combination with a Zamora-Johnson type player. Furthermore, Hughes’ tactics have limited the scoring chances made available to his club.

Despite losing 5-0 to Swansea in the first game of the Premier Leauge season the problem for QPR has not been defending. It has been at the other end of the field where Zamora has become the only lethal scoring. One tally is the best QPR have produced in a match this season. Scoring is the most important thing the club must address as they do not have the quality to rely on a victory having only scored one goal themselves. Until January this means Hughes must focus on getting his strikers in form and finding a combination that threatens the opposition.

It also means that the only way Hughes’ side (for the time being) can rectify themselves is by looking forward and not dwelling on past results. It is the mentality that must be adopted by Liverpool who began to turn their season around ,as aforementioned, with a 5-2 victory against Norwich. QPR must attempt something similar if they want to recover, although with their next three matches including West Brom, Everton and Arsenal they may have to wait until November 4th versus Reading to really change direction.

The question in everyone’s mind coming out of the weekend was: is QPR truly the worst team in the Premier League? The answer is no. On paper and in terms of player quality QPR should be a mid-table side. They have a decent defensive corp, a keeper who was once considered the best on the planet and some promising players upfront. However, QPR must improve their tactics and find ways to score goals before they begin their ascent out of the bottom of the league. If neither of these things happen QPR may go into the final day of the season looking for safety again.


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