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Chelsea v QPR match preview

PUBLISHED: 09:59 31 October 2014 | UPDATED: 10:05 31 October 2014

Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho

Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho

EMPICS Sport

THE LOWDOWN

They say that the form book goes out the window when it comes to a local derby and QPR fans will certainly be hoping that proves to be the case at Stamford Bridge on Saturday.

After failing to win anything last season, Chelsea did what they have been doing since owner Roman Abramovich bought the club in 2003 – spent lots of money.

Diego Costa arrived from La Liga champions Atletico Madrid for £32million and has taken to life in England like a duck to water, scoring nine goals in seven Premier League appearances.

Cesc Fabregas arrived from Barcelona for £30m to fill the gap left by Frank Lampard’s departure – and Mourinho also raided Madrid again to pay out £16m for left-back Filipe Luis before snapping up Loic Remy from QPR just before the transfer window closed for £8.5m.

The result? The Blues are top of the league, four points ahead of second-placed Southampton.

Rangers also spent money during the close season, but nothing on the scale of Chelsea, and they moved off the bottom of the table with after a 2-0 win over Aston Villa.

KEY PLAYERS

Eden Hazard is now the main man for the Blues.

The Belgian playmaker is central to everything good about Chelsea’s play and his ability to dribble past defenders at pace will be the major threat that Rangers will have to deal with.

Hazard has been linked with a move away from Chelsea, but for now his mind seems to be firmly focused on being the best player in the league.

Mourinho doesn’t need much of an opportunity to moan about anything so he has wasted no time in letting the world know that he hasn’t been impressed by the management of Costa during his international matches with Spain.

The forward is still struggling with a hamstring injury and could miss the game, which would be a big boost to the Rs.

Costa is a handful who enjoys getting stuck into centre-backs in a physical duel and is also noted for winding up the opposition.

If Costa fails to return to the Chelsea team, Didier Drogba is likely to start as Remy is struggling with a calf injury.

RECENT MEETINGS

Shaun Wright-Phillips has produced just the one moment of magic since joining the Rs in August 2011 and that was scoring the winning goal against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge in a stunning 1-0 win in January 2013.

The last match at Loftus Road in September 2012 ended 0-0.

PREDICTION

QPR’s best chance of survival and success is adopting the Mourinho tactic of parking the bus, play-acting and time-wasting in addition to harassing the officials.

On paper Chelsea should rip QPR to pieces but, as Wright-Phillips proved, every dog has its day... hopefully two! Chelsea 0 QPR 1


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