14th March 2014
Yeovil Town are back in SkyBet Championship action and Glovers fans might have to take a moment to pinch themselves about this fixture.
Last season, these sides sat two divisions apart, but, despite the big spending efforts of QPR and the thrifty nature of Yeovil’s dealings, the two sides meet this season.
Loftus Road is the destination and Harry Redknapp’s side are in need of the points at the other end of the table.
QPR have continued to spend large amounts in an attempt to secure promotion back to the Premier League at the first attempt and so far things are going according to plan.
They currently lie in 4th place in the table and look assured of a play-off place, they are however 10 points below the automatic promotion places and that might be too much to claw back at this late stage.
Yeovil still remain in the bottom three, but an increase in the side’s form has lead them to within just a single win of the holy grail of 21st place.
Both sides were in action in midweek and both suffered defeats.
Yeovil were beaten for the first time in 5 games as they succumbed to a single Christophe Berra goal in a 1-0 defeat against Ipswich.
QPR were in action on the south coat against Brighton, it was no holiday for them either as they lost 2-0.
In fact, QPR’s form has been somewhat questionable. They have won just once in their last seven.
That was a 2-0 win over Birmingham, but they have also lost to Derby, Reading and Charlton all since the start of February.
Both sides are going into the game with their physio departments earning their overtime in a bid to get everyone fit.
For the hosts, Niko Kranjcar, Matty Phillips, Danny Simpson, Andy Johnson and top scorer Charlie Austin are just some of the names that are either out with long term problems or beginning to return to fitness.
Fear not, they’ve had some success in replacing those who are out with some equally impressive names.
Since the meeting between the sides back in September, the likes of Ravel Morrison, Kevin Doyle and Aaron Hughes have been added.
For Yeovil, Liam Davis is still expected to miss out, as is Joe Ralls who sits out this game as the final one of his suspension.
Sam Foley is away on loan and John Lundstram has returned to Everton after being recalled by his parent club.
However, Sam Hoskins made his return to the match day squad on Tuesday and it’s hoped that scares to Joel Grant, Ishmael Miller and Kieffer Moore are not enough to rule them out.
In the reverse fixture at Huish Park, the hooped shirts of Rangers came out on top.
It was a tight game however and a Charlie Austin penalty was all that separated the two sides.
After the game Gary Johnson explained how despite the 1-0 defeat, he was happy that Yeovil had “outplayed a quality team”.
In truth, the Glovers had come up against an inspired performance from former England goalkeeper Rob Green.
But of course, that was then and a lot has happened since then.
Yeovil’s squad on that day included no fewer than seven members who aren’t with the club and available for selection on Saturday.
As seems to be the recent pattern, it’s that time of the season where other fixtures start playing a part in the table set up.
So, whilst it’s up to Gary and the squad to keep their mind firmly on Loftus Road, supporters may be interested to know that Barnsley travel to Watford, Charlton and Millwall meet each other at the New Den, Doncaster travel to Nottingham Forest and Birmingham and Blackpool are both on their travels to Sheffield Wednesday and Leicester respectively.
The two sides are using Saturday’s game to celebrate the incredible life of a man who took both clubs to new heights.
It has been dubbed “Alec Stock Day” by QPR and Yeovil will be more than happy to play their part in celebrating the man who masterminded the FA Cup run of 1949 which helped put Yeovil on the map as the greatest giant killers of the famous competition.
If you are unable to attend the fixture in person, you can be sure than you will catch all the action on Glovers Player and all the post match reaction will be available on the club’s You Tube channel shortly after.
Yeovil are next at home a week on Saturday against Bolton Wanderers and supporters can purchase tickets for that game now.
It’s also time to think about your season ticket for next season, forms are available in the home programmes, from the clubs or via a renewal form that current holders will have received, the early bird deadline is fast approaching so act quick and reserve your place for the 2014/15 season.
A Foot in both camps – who have played for both sides?
Max Ehmer, Angelo Balanta, Danny Maguire, Leon Best, Marc Bircham, Martin Cranie, Justin Cochrane, Terrell Forbes, Matthew Rose, Antonio German, Andros Townsend and two of the 1949 Yeovil side, Les Blizzard and Alec Stock.
Famous fans – who might you bump into in line for a hotdog?
Former England cricketer Ashley Giles, Comedian Bill Bailey, badly behaved man Martin Clunes, Actor Michael Crawford as well as a whole host of musicians and TV Characters, including Eddie Hitler from Bottom and Ben Harper from ‘My Family’