Leicester City vs QPR: Preview and Prediction

Leicester City and QPR enter Saturday’s match in contrasting forms and different ambitions as both sides aim to extend their respective advantage.

Leicester City suffered a double blow with back-to-back defeats to Middlesbrough and then title rivals Leeds United ahead of the latest EFL Championship clash with QPR. The latter cost them more than three points, allowing Leeds to close the gap on the Foxes at the summit, with only six points separating the two, while Ipswich Town are also level on points with the Whites in third spot.

This is not the first time that Enzo Maresca’s side have suffered consecutive defeats, as a similar outcome earlier in the season resulted in Leicester putting together an 11-game unbeaten run. The Leicester City boss will hope their game against QPR leads to a similar run and keep their challenge for the Championship intact.

Leicester have since bounced back from those defeats by progressing to the FA Cup quarter-finals at the expense of Bournemouth. Despite those setbacks in the league, the Foxes are still in a commanding position entering the final phase of the season, where Maresca will demand total focus and the knack to get results on board.

While Leicester City are keen to bounce back from their setback, QPR are probably enjoying its best form this season. The Londoners are coming into this clash at the back of staying unbeaten in six of their seven league clashes, including consecutive victories over Bristol City and relegation rivals Rotherham United.

They suffered a crucial defeat at the hands of fellow relegation battlers Stoke City. But with the wins in the last two games, QPR is slightly out of the relegation zone. Despite their recent revival, Marti Cifuentes’s side are still in danger and still have plenty to work for to achieve safety, although there is confidence in the side to accomplish that.

Team News & Tactics

Leicester City

Enzo Maresca does not have too many headaches with squad fitness, and Wilfred Ndidi is missing from action with an injury. Jannik Vestegaard is also ruled out with a suspension, meaning Callum Doyle can stake a place in the heart of the defence alongside Wout Faes.

Overall, Leicester City can field a strong enough side to thwart the threat posed by QPR, with Maresca likely to go with a midfield double pivot of Harry Winks and Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall.

There are some more doubtful faces in the Leicester camp, with Jamie Vardy set to be assessed for a knock, which will determine his participation. Kelechi Iheanacho has also impressed of late, although Maresca might suppress his temptation to start the Nigerian in his attacking setup.

Dennis Praet has done a decent job in the attacking midfield role, while Abdul Fatawu and Stephy Mavididi are best placed to start from the wide areas. Thomas Cannon may find himself leading the line for the Foxes and aim to get on the scoresheet on Saturday.

Probable Lineup (4-2-3-1): Hermansen; Pereira, Doyle, Faes, Justin; Dewsbury-Hall, Winks; Fatawu, Praet, Mavididi; Cannon


Marti Cifuentes has a few concerns about his squad options, with only Rayan Kolli a certain absentee from the team. There is doubt about Aaron Drewe’s participation, although he will be assessed before the game.

Paul Smyth has been cleared to return to the team, although it will be interesting to see if Cifuentes will reinstate him straight in the starting line. The QPR boss might find room in his attacking setup for the left-sided player as he could join Chris Willock and Joe Hodge in the roles behind the central striker.

Tactically, Cifuentes might be opposed to dropping Hodge for a game of this magnitude, considering how the central attacking midfielder provides compactness in his side.

Jack Colback and Sam Fields are well-placed to take up their central midfield positions, with a back four behind them to add cover. Up front, Michael Frey remains Cifuentes’s preferred foremost striking option despite intense competition for places from Lyndon Dykes.

Probable Lineup (4-2-3-1): Begovic; Dunne, Cook, Clarke-Salter, Paal; Hayden, Colback; Willock, Hodge, Chair; Dykes

Key Stats

  • Leicester City have seen over 2.5 goals in their last four matches against Queens Park Rangers in all competitions.
  • There have been over 2.5 goals scored in five of Leicester City’s last six games in the Championship.
  • Leicester City have scored at least two goals in their last four matches against Queens Park Rangers in all competitions.
  • QPR have remained unbeaten in six of their last seven league encounters.
  • QPR are coming into this game on the back of consecutive league wins.

Player to Watch

Harry Winks

Embed from Getty Images

Since the start of the season, Harry Winks may have presented Enzo Maresca with a unique idea following his surprise move to the EFL Championship. The former Tottenham midfielder has been the heartbeat of Leicester City this season as he has taken on the responsibility of helping them gain promotion.

With the absence of Wilfred Ndidi likely to be felt on Saturday, it is up to Winks to hold the midfield together now. He will have Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall for a company in the middle, although the manager will place his trust in the midfielder to make the side tick on the field.


Leicester City 2-1 QPR

QPR came into this clash at the King Power in a good vein of form but under some pressure to increase the gap between them and the relegation battlers. However, they might end up ruing the timing of this fixture, especially when they were looking to gain momentum.

Leicester City had previously responded well after consecutive league defeats, and their manager will hope for the same this time around. Hence, the Foxes might show caution in approaching this game but have the tools to take all three points.

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