McClaren considers formation change for QPR at Bristol City

PUBLISHED: 16:00 12 February 2019

Toni Leistner came on at half-time for Queens Park Rangers against Birmingham City at the weekend (pic: George Phillipou/TGS Photo)

Toni Leistner came on at half-time for Queens Park Rangers against Birmingham City at the weekend (pic: George Phillipou/TGS Photo)

©TGS Photo +44 1376 553468

Rs went to a back three in second half of defeat against Birmingham City on Saturday and switch seemed to work well

Steve McClaren hinted Queens Park Rangers could field a back three for their trip to Bristol City in the Sky Bet Championship tonight.

The Rs fielded a 3-5-2 formation in the second half of their defeat at home to Birmingham City on Saturday and it seemed to work well.

With the Rs trailing 4-1 at the break, they were able to pull it back to 4-3 before Nahki Wells missed a stoppage-time penalty to salvage a draw.

Since taking charge last summer, QPR boss McClaren has favoured a back four, but suggested Saturday has given him food for thought about fielding a back three.

“It’s got to be a consideration for the Bristol City game, but the only reason I did it on Saturday was to handle their front two (Lukas Jutkiewicz and Che Adams) because we couldn’t handle it with two,” he said.

“We couldn’t handle them even with four; we told four to stay in and deal with it and we couldn’t do that.

“We needed a change of fortune and it’s attitude, personnel and shape; we changed all three and it very nearly worked.”

The trip to Ashton Gate is the start of a huge week for QPR, who host Premier League outfit Watford in the FA Cup fifth round on Friday night.

Victory in that cup tie could see the Rs pocket £360,00 in prize money as well as a spot in the quarter-finals.

Before that, though, comes the clash at the Robins and McClaren is aware how important both games are this week.

“We’ve got a massive week, but we’ve got a massive rest of the season ahead of us,” added the 57-year-old.

“We got through in the cup against Portsmouth, which was important for the fans especially, but in the league we’ve just narrowly lost to Birmingham, which is normal in the Championship.

“We’ve got to turn that around, we’ve got to find a new team and the second half went a long way to doing that.”

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