Free Premier League Soccer Picks for QPR vs Liverpool

Lee Phelps

Tuesday, October 14, 2014 7:12 PM GMT

Tuesday, Oct. 14, 2014 7:12 PM GMT

Can QPR stop the rot this weekend as they welcome out-of-sorts Liverpool to London? We've enlisted the help of Lee Phelps to look at the betting and offer his free picks from the best Premier League soccer odds.

The English media has been alive with talk of Raheem Sterling being too tired to play for England this week, for me the bigger story is Harry Redknapp declaring before the international break that he is worried about his entire squad’s fitness!

 

QPR
Let’s start with the London side rooted to the bottom of the Premier League. I had been wondering about their passion before Redknapp’s comments, because they haven’t got close enough to opponents so far to get a foothold in a game. I didn’t really consider fitness at this stage of the season, presuming they are fresh from a pre-season and so that couldn’t be an issue. I was plainly wrong. Not only has the manager had his say, but Armand Traore has also been critical of the situation on espn.co.uk: “Every week I say the same things," Traore said. "If there's one thing we cannot lack, it’s fitness. I don't think we lack desire. I think in certain areas we lack some fitness and sharpness. We need to work on this and on everything really.

"I think we need to gel as a team. There's a few players that came in. We need to bond on and off the pitch. If it means going out for a bowling night or whatever. The captain needs to organise this, it's always good for the team."

With only three players on international duty they have had two weeks to sharpen up and you’d expect them to have done just that. Rangers have had a good international break to be fair. Fer only played 20 minutes in one of Holland’s game, while Isla and Vargas both featured in the Peru game, with Vargas scoring two goals.

Away from the fitness, or maybe because of it, there’s a lack of any tactical idea. I was reading a blog on www.thesecretfootballer.com this week which echoed these concerns: “There appears, on the face of it, to be a lack of a game plan. I honestly can’t tell you how Rangers are trying to score their goals and, even when I study their performances in depth, there doesn’t seem to be any real strategy. That leads to players sitting off the opposition – as we saw during the woefully lacklustre offering at West Ham, where Rangers were lucky to lose only 2-0.

If, as a player, you have no clear instructions when taking to the pitch, then it is extremely difficult to make decisions with and without the ball. To my mind, that has led to a lack of effort, not necessarily because the players are lazy – though I’m sure one or two are – but because they simply don’t know what they are supposed to be doing, so they simply do nothing.”

Now I’m willing to trust it is more the fitness than ‘laziness’ but whichever it is the stats don’t lie and they need to start digging in and doing some hard work soon, starting with Liverpool.

 

Liverpool
A strange situation is developing where England manager (and former Reds’ boss) Roy Hodgson is having a phony war with current Anfield top man Brendan Rodgers. First the Sturridge injury, now the Sterling tiredness, Liverpool must be sure to not lose track of this season before it’s too late.

The manager has openly admitted they are not at the level we saw last season, but for glimpses against Everton and Tottenham. Having Sturridge back in a front two with Balotelli and (a rested) Sterling would signal a different Liverpool in my mind and QPR may well be the ideal opponents for them.

It will be interesting to see how the injuries are after all the Liverpool internationals return, we’re already hearing Lazar Markovic is out after limping off playing for Serbia.

Rangers need to sort out their defence, but that won’t be as easy at home, with a Liverpool team inviting them on. Attacking hasn’t been the issue for QPR, scoring and not conceding has though. They have allowed their opponents an average of 11 shots on goal per match and whilst they have had 58 shots of their own (the third highest in the division), they have only resulted in 3 goals at home.

 

Soccer Picks
For your soccer picks I expect QPR to be fitter, but ironically it may count against them here. With that extra zip they may attack even more, but lacking that finisher to convert the chances, they will leave gaps for Liverpool to exploit and they do have the finishers to convert their average of 5 shots on target per game. Sturridge scores from one every 4 shots for his team, so despite his rustiness, I expect him to have a big impact.

I’m confident the Londoners will score here because of their improved fitness and Liverpool’s defending so my safest bet would be both teams to score with soccer odds listed at 3/4 and for a bit more value add a Liverpool win in for 9/4.

Free Soccer Pick: Both teams to score: 3/4  at 5Dimes

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