Match Preview: Queens Park Rangers v Sheffield United

Last updated : 22 February 2008 By @blades_mad1889

Hoops vs Blades
The Hoops last saw action on 12 February in their 4-2 heavy defeat at Loftus Road to Burnley which saw veteran striker Andy Cole (41, 56 and 86 minutes) net a hat-trick. The much travelled striker has represented Manchester United, Blackburn Rovers, Manchester City, Sunderland, Arsenal, Fulham, Bristol City, Portsmouth and Newcastle United in a long and established career.

Gavin Mahon (14) and Patrick Agyemang (30) had set the ball rolling for the home side before Cole's intervention, the win was sealed when former Blade Ade Akinbiyi (77) netted the Clarets third goal of the game.

The Hoops are expected to see former Southampton defender Fitz Hall (groin) return to the side after resuming full training whilst star midfielder Akos Buzsacky is suspended.

Italian manager Gianni Paladini could field former Sheffield United midfielder Mikele Leigertwood who missed their trip to Bramall Lane on 12th January due to suspension.

Leigertwood, was signed in July 2006 buy Neil Warnock (from Crystal Palace) and made his debut on the opening day of the Premier League season in a 1-1 draw with Liverpool, he left United in August 2007 to join the Loftus Road club having made 19 appearances (+4) without netting once.

Possible Hoops Line-Up: Lee Camp, Fitz Hall, Damion Stewart, Chris Barker, Mikele Leigertwood, Matthew Connolly, Gavin Mahon, Martin Rowlands, Hogan Ephraim, Dexter Blackstock, Akos Buzsacky.

Sheffield United come into this game on back of a 0-0 draw to Middlesbrough at Bramall Lane last Sunday in a game of too few chances, the replay will take place next Wednesday and will be shown once again live on BBC One.

That draw saw United go six games unbeaten, which included five draws despite losing manger Bryan Robson along the way and being replaced by former Assistant manager Kevin Blackwell.

Winger David Cotterill is expected to return to the side after missing out in the game against Middlesbrough. The midfielder, on loan from Wigan Athletic made impressive starts in the 0-0 draws against Scunthorpe United and West Bromwich Albion at Bramall Lane and the Hawthorns until he was ruled out of the Cup game with Boro as he was cup-tied.

The Blades could once again be without veteran midfielder Gary Speed (groin) to injury, therefore Chris Armstrong may take his place in the centre of midfield.

Strikers James Beattie and Billy Sharp are expected to remain up front, with on loan Inter Milan forward Goran Slavkoski being a possibly surprise package on the substitutes bench. The powerful striker is likened to Swedish international Zlatan Ibrahimovic.

Possible Blades Line-Up: Paddy Kenny, Derek Geary, Chris Morgan, Matthew Kilgallon, Gary Naysmith, David Cotterill, Michael Tonge, Chris Armstrong, Lee Martin, James Beattie, Billy Sharp.

:: Man in the Middle ::

Referee: Steve Bennett
Assistants: I. Gosling & T. Massey
Fourth Official: K. Wright