3 things that Forest must do to overcome QPR
Our second half display versus Reading should hold us in good stead when we make the journey to Loftus Road this weekend.
The match against QPR is likely to be a tightly fought contest. We could leapfrog Ian Holloway`s side in the table with a win, but there are a few things that Aitor Karanka will need to get right if we are to be victorious:
1) Take care of the aerial threat
There is no doubt that opposing striker Matt Smith will be an absolute menace from crosses and set pieces. Joe Worrall could be in line to return after a slight knee problem, but there is still uncertainty over whether he will be fit to start the match tomorrow. It could mean that we`ll persist with the centre back partnership of Fox and Figueiredo.
The pair coped well with an aerial bombardment against Burton in our last away game, and hopefully, if they do start together again, they continue to perform, and manage to clear all the crosses that will inevitably be fired into our box. We will also need Pantilimon to be in command of his area and to continue his good recent form.
2) Deal with QPR`s 3-5-2 system
Rangers will likely play three at the back, unlike when they were given a 4-0 hiding by us earlier in the season. The 3-5-2 formation will require us to adjust our tactics, and the defence will have to cope with two strikers rather than one.
While Smith will constantly be a problem for our defenders in the air, Conor Washington`s industriousness will cause just as many issues, pressurising and harrying our players into making mistakes. Whoever starts in the backline, they will need to be right on their game to stop the pair creating chances.
3) Young Ben must start firing in front of goal
In his press conference this week, our manager intimated that he gave Ben Brereton a stern talking to at half time during the Reading game. The 18-year-old put in a much-improved performance in the second half and looks set to continue as our lone striker.
Ben has a very bright future in the game, but we need him to be hitting the back of the net with more regularity if he is going to keep his place in the starting XI. Although he has made just as many starts on the right wing, his two goals in the league this season needs to be improved upon.
With Lee Tomlin now ably assisting him however, we can perhaps hope to see a greater threat from the teenager in the attacking third of the pitch.