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Home form will get QPR’s promotion push back on track

A Premier League fixture last season, QPR host Reading with both sides set to be put under increasing pressure in the race for automatic promotion and the play-offs respectively.

Harry Redknapp’s Hoops, odds-on at 8/13 to make an immediate return to the top flight, are 10/11 to get back to winning ways against the Royals after dropping four points against fellow top-four opposition in their last two outings.

The Royals are 16/5 under Nigel Adkins to snatch victory at Loftus Road because of their indifferent away record of six wins and as many losses. Odds of 5/2 on a draw – the outcome in QPR and Reading’s last three encounters – are tempting, but punters should place faith in the Hoops.

Both teams take to the field after other Championship matches have been played. The worst case scenario for QPR is they could start six points off an automatic promotion place if Burnley beat Bournemouth.

Reading, meanwhile, could slip out of the play-offs if Ipswich Town hammer Blackpool 4-0. Republic of Ireland striker Kevin Doyle is set to line up against his old club here. You can get 5/4 on him scoring anytime for the Hoops.

Controversial midfield player Joey Barton scored for QPR in the reverse fixture. He is 11/2 to do so again, but must watch his discipline as he is one more booking away from a ban.

Adkins’ Royals have given out hidings in three of the four wins in their last seven league games. Adam Le Fondre has hit two hat-tricks in 5-1 and 7-1 demolitions of Blackpool and Bolton Wanderers. Punters can get 40/1 on another treble for him here.

Although the Hoops have yet to win in February, three of their last four home league games have finished with the same scoreline. A 2-1 QPR victory is attractive at 17/2.

If punters are less convinced by that precise result, there’s always the market on a victory with both teams scoring. This is a safer option with a price of 18/5 on Redknapp’s side.

QPR’s optimum time to score is before the hour mark. In half of their last six league games they have scored first between the 50th and 60th minute.