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QPR were sitting in third place only six weeks ago, but a horrendous run of form has put their chances of finishing in the top six in serious doubt.
A 1-0 defeat to fellow playoff contenders Sheffield United on Tuesday night was their sixth loss in seven matches and fourth in succession.
With a trip to third-placed Huddersfield Town to come on Good Friday, this fixture is surely a must-win for Mark Warburton‘s side or their promotion hopes could be all but over in the next week.
Only Fulham and Nottingham Forest have scored more away goals in the Championship this season than QPR, who have netted 26 times in 19 matches on the road.
The Hoops scored twice in the final 20 minutes as they came from 2-1 down to win 3-2 against Preston at the Kiyan Prince Foundation Stadium earlier in the season. It was only their third victory against the Lilywhites in their last 14 meetings.
The Lilywhites have won their last two home matches and have only lost three times at Deepdale in the Championship this season. Only West Bromwich Albion have lost fewer games at home (two).
However, compared to their free-scoring opponents, Preston are frugal in the final third. Only four teams have scored fewer goals than the Lancashire outfit in the Championship this season.
Preston defender Liam Lindsay remains suspended following his straight red card against Derby last weekend. The back three should therefore remain the same, but Bambo Diaby is an option if needed after recovering from illness.
Ched Evans missed the midweek win over Blackpool after hobbling off with a foot injury against Derby, but he is in contention to return.
Emil Riis Jakobsen is the Lilywhites’ top scorer this season with 17 goals, but the Dane has netted just once in his last 12 appearances.
Stefan Johansen (injury) and Moses Odubajo (personal reasons) were both absent for QPR’s defeat to Sheffield United on Tuesday, but may return in this game.
Rotation could be in order as Mark Warburton desperately searches for a winning formula again, with Charlie Austin and Sam McCallum pushing for starts.
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Thirty-seven-year-old Kieran Westwood arrived last month amid the squad’s goalkeeper injury crisis, but he has conceded six times in three games and is yet to keep a clean sheet.
Preston North End possible starting lineup:
Iversen; van den Berg, Bauer, Hughes; Potts, Whiteman, Browne, Cunningham; Johnson; Archer, Riis
Queens Park Rangers possible starting lineup:
Westwood; Dunne, Barbet, Dickie; Odubajo, Field, Johansen, McCallum; Chair; Dykes, Austin