Brentford and Queens Park Rangers face-off in a West London derby this weekend (Saturday, kick-off 3pm) with the R’s making the short trip after a huge result on Tuesday evening.
Seven consecutive league defeats after a draw at Villa Park on New Year’s Day, the R’s managed to defy the odds and surprise much-fancied Leeds United.
A win for the Whites in midweek would have sent them top of the Championship table, above fellow promotion chasers Norwich City, yet they were derailed by a side in the poorest of form.
For QPR it was the result they’d been waiting for after a few abject performances, a few unlucky moments and more than their fair share of last-minute drama, but this win they thoroughly deserved.
As boss Steve McClaren proudly explained post-match, they ‘covered their mate’ with Jordan Cousins deserving special mention for his tireless hurrying of the Leeds’ midfield.
Overall they battled tremendously as a team in a fine collective example of how to pressurise an opposition.
Having missed the defeat at Middlesbrough, Luke Freeman returned and ran the show with his goal the icing on the cake of a performance of ambition, fast-feet and a constant eye for creativity.
However goalkeeper Joe Lumley claimed the star moment of the encounter, making a sensational second-half triple save. Speaking afterwards he said ‘instinct took over’ before humbly referring back to the overall team performance.
Up next is a short trip across West London to Brentford who have won five of their last seven league games, scoring 11 goals in their last three home league matches.
Defensively the Hoops will have to be as resilient as they were against Leeds but that result could re-ignite their season. After facing many of the league’s high-flyers, they face just three of the current top 10 in the final 12 games of this year’s campaign.
Heading into the meeting at Griffin Park, the Hoops have the chance to not only obtain bragging rights over their neighbours but also leapfrog the Bees in the table.
With with Brentford’s last home defeat coming just under three months ago the R’s will have to be at their best to push them aside.