Game preview - Queens Park Rangers (a)

LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 04: Bobby Zamora of Queens Park Rangers scores the opening goal during the Barclays Premier League match between Queens Park Rangers and Wolverhampton Wanderers at Loftus Road on February 4, 2012 in London, England. (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)

Despite entailing an entirely different postal area, Shepherd's Bush is somewhat brimming with Fulham artefacts. Mark Hughes is probably the most pertinent, rewarding himself with a cosy six month gap from football to return with something, supposedly, more ambitious. Bobby Zamora spoke of ambition when he made his Queens Park Rangers move too, but, in my house at least, the Loft - as Loftus Road is sometimes referred to - is somewhere to put things you don't really want any more. Perhaps Zamora's departure wasn't such a damning blow then, after all. Cue, Queens Park Rangers vs Fulham.

The rivalry between Fulham and QPR has always been somewhat tame, but with the pair now competing domestically in the same league, the bitterness has yet again began to resonate. The decision of Mark Hughes to move to Shepherd's Bush in search for an ambitious club intensified what used to be more of a patronising hatred of the Hoops, and Bobby Zamora opting to team up with him was a particularly sour factor for Fulham fans.

On the flip side, QPR fans were distraught to witness Fulham's 6-0 deconstruction of their beloved team earlier in the campaign at Craven Cottage, with Andy Johnson proving to be their undoing. Rangers, and what is now their expensively assembled squad, will be looking to exact some sweet revenge on home turf and will be eminently more confident given Fulham's lack of form outside of SW6.

Hughes' reign at Loftus Road hasn't been overly fruitful as yet. His side have lost both of their last two games and haven't won since mid-January - a 3-1 win over Wigan Athletic. QPR fought back from 3-0 down against Blackburn in their last outing but could only muster two Jamie Mackie goals.

Fulham have still to win two back-to-back Premier League games this season and, despite this fixture being on the road, Martin Jol is undoubtedly hoping that this is a realistic opportunity to build some much-craved momentum. Pavel Pogrebnyak scored on his debut against Stoke before we had the the week off, as Fulham secured a nervy 2-1 victory. They'll have to be more resilient this time around.

Djibril Cisse, one of Hughes' first signings for the Rs, is still suspended after a rash reaction to what was a poorly timed tackle by Roger Johnson of Wolves. DJ Campbell is also out but Mackie's impressive cameo against Blackburn could leave him in contention to start.

For Fulham, Andy Johnson makes a welcome return while concerns over Pavel Pogrebnyak appear to have eased. Grygera and Sidwell miss out.

Predicted line-up: Schwarzer; Riise, Hangeland, Senderos, Kelly; Dempsey, Murphy, Dembele, Ruiz; Pogrebnyak, Johnson

Score prediction: QPR 1 - 2 Fulham

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