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Premier League preview: West Brom v QPR

Queens Park Rangers’ Mark Hughes has conceded his injury-ruined defence is unlikely to receive reinforcements to play West Bromwich Albion.

QPR have conceded 13 goals in six games so far this season and are bottom of the English Premier League.

The 48-year-old manager has revealed he expects injured defenders Anton Ferdinand, Jose Bosingwa, Fabio (all hamstring) and Armand Traore (ankle) to miss the trip to West Bromwich.

That will make it difficult for Hughes to improve QPR’s back four before Sunday’s game.

“In terms of selection it’s too fragmented at the moment because of injuries,” Hughes said.

“We haven’t got that solidity but it needs to improve quickly so we can get results.”

QPR have drawn twice and lost four times so far this season, including a 2-1 home defeat against West Ham on Monday.

Hughes’ side face a tough task this weekend as they take on WBA, who sit sixth on the Premier League table and came from behind to draw 1-1 with local rivals Aston Villa last round.

WBA have surprised many with their impressive start to the new campaign, winning three and drawing two in the first six rounds.

Manager Steve Clarke has WBA playing good football – solid and hard-working in defence, while quick and clever when attacking.

New signings Claudio Yacob and Romelu Lukaku have both added something extra to WBA’s predominantly no-frills squad, while Clarke was thrilled with how Macedonian defender Goran Popov handled his debut in the derby versus Aston Villa.

“He’s an experienced player, has played in a lot of big matches and he showed that today,” Clarke said.

“He’s got a terrific left foot, knows the game, knows how to defend and is a strong boy.

“He gives us another good option in the squad.”

Clarke has injury concerns of his own heading into the match.

Chris Brunt (hamstring) and Billy Jones (knee) were both substituted in the first half against Villa, while Gareth McAuley picked up a knock in the second half but had to play on.

Liam Ridgewell (calf/shin), Steven Reid (hamstring) and Jerome Thomas (knee) will all face fitness tests this week to prove they are ready to play.

With WBA having scored eight goals this season to QPR’s four, the home team should have too much firepower against the visitors from London.

Thu 4 October, 2012
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