Match Difficulty Grade
B+ – It’s crunch time. If Villa win, it’ll give them a seven-point cushion above QPR and seriously dent our West London relegation rival’s recent revival. If QPR take three points away from Villa Park, it may be time for a change of underwear for Villa fans. This could be a scrappy game and even more nervous viewing than last weekend’s three points relief. Now is most definitely the time for Villa to register back-to-back wins for the first time since May 2011.
Form is Temporary
Current Premier League form table (last six games) – Aston Villa – 12th / QPR – 9th
Aston Villa: Last five Premier League matches at home: W 1, L 4
QPR: Last five Premier League matches away: W 2, D 1, L 2
Last time we played QPR at home Bent and N’Zogbia scored in a frustrating 2-2 draw. Before that, the last time we played in the league was in the 1995/96 season and we won the home fixture 4-2.
Facts to Sweep Under the Carpet
What is most worrying about the resurgence of QPR is that their form is now better than ours, and they come into this fixture after two successive wins. Also their January signings have all come to the party, with three of them scoring in their last outing. As stated above, it seems an eternity since Villa last won back-to-back games, and with Villa’s poor home form and failure to keep a clean sheet (18 games without one, in fact) Villa will be tested on Saturday afternoon. With QPR having only lost twice in their last nine games, Harry Rednapp will no doubt fancy his team’s chances against a side that have managed just a measly 13 points from home fixtures.
What We Pray the Football Gods Will Provide
Spirit and desire. Fortune favoured Villa last weekend in that the own goal was quickly rectified, and it came as a result of the fighting and positive attitude Lambert has instilled. Villa played reasonably well at the Madejski Stadium but their quick response to conceding helped tilt the pattern of the game in their favour, and the fighting spirit and eagerness to get a second goal before the break worked wonders for the general mind-set of Lambert’s Lions. Let’s see more of the same.
Why Villa are Totally 100% Going to Win
Harry Redknapp’s last visit to Villa Park (with Spurs) brought Villa the point that secured survival last season. While it’s crucial not to lose to Redknapp’s QPR, three points would go along way to securing survival again. Reading and QPR would have been effectively dealt with, so one relegation place would then remain. The [latest] return of Ron Vlaar has definitely added some much-needed experience to the Villa ranks, demonstrated by his words of encouragement to Baker after the own-goal. After that, he had a good game, and it’s that sense of unity that should help Villa prevail against QPR’s band of high wage mercenaries. In the last six games that Vlaar has started Villa have only lost once. Add to that our decent strike force and the combination should do the trick. Also Villa have tended to perform ok in must-win games (both Reading matches, West Ham), so there’s no reason to doubt we can’t take all three points from Redknapp’s mob.
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Villa looking for back-to-back wins for the first time since May 2011. QPR now looking for a third win in succession. After the Reading three points, Villa might take a draw here, a loss though would be unthinkable. The draw is inviting value at 3.3o/1
You can more than double your money with a Villa win on Paddy Power at 2.25/1
Both teams to score at 1.66 should be a safe bet, considering Villa’s forward line and defence!
12/1 on Bet365 for Benteke anytime and 2-1 Villa win.
Or alternately, Bet365 will match your bet up to £200 if you open an account with them and they are also currently offering decent percentage bonuses on accumulator wins on the top European leagues and Champion’s League.