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Preview of Sunday and Monday’s Premier League games

Newcastle’s top scorer is Demba Ba, but the striker is an injury-doubt for his teams game at Liverpool.

Sunday’s early Premier League kick-off is at Loftus Road, where two teams who have yet to gain a league victory this season meet as QPR host Reading.

QPR are rock bottom of the Premier League and spending big this summer has yet to pay off.

The Hoops brought in 12 players this summer, but the new players have yet to gel as team.

Rangers were unlucky to come away with nothing from their trip to Arsenal last weekend, despite being reduced to ten men.

Hoops boss Mark Hughes is under pressure to start winning games and he will be looking at this fixture as a chance to gain their first league victory of the season.

The visitors have yet to gain their first top flight victory either, but won 3-2 at QPR in the Capitol One Cup earlier this season. Brian McDermott’s side have struggled to pick up points this season and are just a point above the Hoops.

Reading were defeated 7-5 by Arsenal in their midweek Capitol One Cup. The Royals were four goals up against the Gunners, but poor defending cost them in the extraordinary encounter.

Elsewhere the later kick-off sees Newcastle United visit Liverpool’s Anfield. Liverpool drew 2-2 with arch-rivals Everton in last weekend’s Merseyside derby, but had an injury-time Luis Suarez goal wrongly disallowed.

The Reds have had a rather mixed start to Brendan Rodgers tenure in charge. They currently sit 12th in the Premier League and have had problems winning their home games. Uruguayan striker Luis Suarez was a constant menace to the Everton defence last weekend and Reds fans will be hoping he is in top form again against the Magpies.

Newcastle boss Alan Pardew has called for Reds boss Brendan Rodgers to be given time to turn things around. However Newcastle are just two places and two points above their opponents in the Premier League table.

The Magpies have started the season in inconsistent fashion and will have a lot of work to do to challenge for the Champions League spots this season.  Senegalese striker Demba Ba is the clubs top scorer this season with seven goals, but is a big injury doubt for this encounter.

Should Ba fail to make the starting line-up boss Alan Pardew is likely to partner Ba’s compatriot Papiss Cisse with local boy Shola Ameobi up front. Newcastle could move into the top six with a victory on Merseyside.

Monday night’s game comes from the Hawthorns, as West Brom hosts strugglers Southampton. The Baggies have made a very decent start to the season under Steve Clarke and are very strong at home.

The Baggies lost their last Premier League encounter 2-1 at Newcastle, but could move into the top four with a victory, depending on the size of the win.

Southampton have collected just four points in the top flight this season and are second bottom in the Premier League table. The Saints have conceded 26 goals this season, the most in the top flight.

However, Nigel Adkins side can score goals and usually score in their away fixtures. Nobody apart Swansea in the bottom half of the Premier League table have scored more goals than the South Coast club, the Saints firing home 14 Premier League goals so far this season.

Can QPR claim their first Premier League victory of the season against Reading?

Sat 3 November, 2012
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