Preview: Queens Park Rangers vs. Sheffield United (Part One)

Last updated : 03 April 2011 By @blades_mad1889

The Blades lost their corresponding fixture with Queens Park Rangers (3-0) earlier in the season; it was the Blades first home game of the Championship season. The game saw the return of former keeper Paddy Kenny who joined the Loftus Road club during the summer in a £750,000 transfer.

It was an awful display by United and the visitors soon took advantage of lacklustre defending and had stormed into a three goal lead inside 25 minutes; Hogan Ephraim, Jamie Mackie and Adel Taarabt (penalty) found the net. United came back without reply though at the other end the Blades saw two penalty appeals turned down whilst Kenny made several top notch saves; after the match Kevin Blackwell was sacked and swiftly replaced by Gary Speed.

Due to international football being played the Blades relegation battle was put on hold, meaning that there last action on the field took place fifteen days ago when the Blades took full advantage of a poor turn out by Leeds United, winning the Yorkshire Derby 2-0.

An own goal by Eric Lichaj (55 minutes) and a strike from Bjorne Helge Riise (74) gave the hosts a two-nil win. In the last minute of the game the visitors saw Billy Paynter sent off after the referee judged he had stamped on Shane Lowry.

Blades boss Micky Adams is without a number of players; Johannes Ertl (knee), Ryan France (back), Richard Wright (thigh) and Andy Taylor (leg) are all missing through injury.

They are however boosted by the return of Darius Henderson who returns from suspension – the striker was sent off at Watford (two bookings) in what was only his first start for United this season after recovering from a lengthy hamstring injury.

Though midfielder Lee Williamson, who was also sent off against Watford will miss the trip to Loftus Road through suspension; he will sit out the second of a four match ban.

Striker Sam Vokes will also be missing; the Welsh international has returned to parent club Wolverhampton Wanderers following the completion of his loan deal. Defender Stephen Jordan has returned to Bramall Lane following his loan spell at Huddersfield Town also.

Sheffield United has two former R’s on their books; Marcus Bent and Andy Taylor (injured) with Bent most likely to feature on the substitute’s bench.

Bent joined the Loftus Road club on loan in February 2010 from parent club Birmingham City and remained with the R’s until the remainder of the season.

He made his debut in a 1-0 defeat at Peterborough United in a game which saw both Peter Ramage and Mikele Leigertwood sent off. Bent made a further two appearances for his loan club before returning to St. Andrews.

Taylor joined the Loftus Road club on a month’s loan deal from Blackburn Rovers in January 2006 – making his Football League debut in a 1-0 home win over Southampton (he replaced Georges Santos as a second half substitute). He went onto make a further two appearances; both 2-0 away defeats at Leeds and Luton.

Expected Eleven: Simonsen, Nosworthy, Lowry, Mattock, Lowton, Riise, Montgomery, Quinn, Cresswell, Bogdanovic, Evans.