A depleted Birmingham City struggled to a 0-0 draw with Preston North End at the weekend after two straight league losses – and EFL pundit David Prutton believes it will be back to losing ways for the Blues against Queens Park Rangers on Tuesday night.
Lee Bowyer’s side started the season in strong form, conceding just three goals in their first six league outings and kept clean sheets against the likes of Sheffield United and Stoke City.
But after a positive return from the international break against Derby County, Birmingham slipped to back-to-back losses against Fulham and Peterborough United, conceding seven goals in the process.
A stalemate with North End at St. Andrew’s on Saturday was a slight improvement but injuries to the likes of Marc Roberts and Kristian Pedersen means the bench looks slightly thread-bare.
Quiz: Have Birmingham City ever been involved in these 18 scenarios?
It’s something that QPR could capitalise on as they welcome Bowyer and his side to the Kiyan Prince Foundation Stadium, who themselves have slipped out of form since the return of club football with just one point out of a possible 12 with three defeats in a row.
Prutton is predicting that Mark Warburton will be able to guide his side to all three points though against the Blues to end their painful run of results.
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“QPR were so good in large parts against West Brom on Friday night, but ultimately performances mean nothing if they are not returning points, and the fact right now is that they have lost three on the spin,” Prutton wrote in his Sky Sports column.
“Birmingham are also not in great form themselves right now, despite battling to a goalless draw against Preston on Saturday.
“They will have a go as they always do, but might just come up short in west London. 2-1.”
Both of these clubs had really positive August’s in the league, so it’s quite a surprise to see them struggle in the last week or so.
Perhaps other teams in the Championship improved in the final days of the transfer window or others have just clicked during the international break, but it’s now a good chance for one of these teams to get back on track.
Troy Deeney will be hoping to get off the mark for his new club from open play after scoring a penalty against Fulham but the biggest danger in-front of goal on the pitch will no doubt be Andre Gray, who has already scored twice for the R’s.
I can see a draw on the horizon here though – perhaps a 1-1 between two teams who will be desperate for a victory.