Queens Park Rangers: 4 QPR Players Who Must Not Start Against Manchester United
Those who have read my articles before will know that I am president of the "RASWP" fan club: Rangers Against SWP—I've even made badges. Therefore, it goes without saying that he shouldn't start against Manchester United.
However, there are other players who should also not make an appearance on Saturday, and some you may be surprised about.
Read on to discover who they are.
Stephane Mbia is able to return to the first team squad this weekend after serving his three-match suspension (via QPR.co.uk). However, he really shouldn't be in contention for a starting place.
Mbia may have more weight behind him in terms of international performances and high-level teams than Anton Ferdinand (via Soccerbase), but Mbia is not the solid defender Mark Hughes was hoping for (via ESPN).
In his four games so far, Mbia has only made eight tackles (via WhoScored) and always seems to be holding too high a line compared to the rest of the Rangers defense.
With Robin van Persie, Wayne Rooney and Chicharito on the charge at Old Trafford, QPR need a defender who will stand his ground and not be caught in no man's land.
It would also help if the Cameroonian doesn't get sent off as well.
Esteban Granero has been one of the highlights of a poor Rangers season so far—that is, until he was played on the wing (via Sky Sports).
The Spaniard's passing performance against Southampton was in complete contrast to the previous home game against Reading. Yes, QPR were poor as a whole against the Saints (via East London Advertiser), but playing Granero in an unfamiliar role certainly didn't help.
The ex-Madrid man only played two-thirds of the total number of passes that he did vs. Reading, the majority of these down the right-hand side, and with five percent more failed attempts when passing down the flanks.
These figures may not mean much in terms of his overall season stats, but the image above proves that when he is in the center, he controls the play. When he isn't, he does not.
If Mark Hughes is going to insist on playing Granero out of position, there is no point in playing him at all.
I'm not totally dismissing Jamie Mackie as a starter, but there has to be some ground rules if he is on that team sheet.
Mackie is one of the players who always puts 100 percent into his performances, but he is no good being used as an out and out striker in the Premier League.
Mackie played the second 45 minutes of the Southampton game—his first action since starting against Reading at the beginning of the month. However, despite all of his hard work, he created zero chances, had no shots and made only one forward pass (via FourFourTwo Stats Zone App).
That's not exactly the form you are looking for from a forward.
If Hughes is to play Mackie, it must be as a midfielder. Otherwise, he can run and run as much as he likes, but he will not have any impact on the game.
The question is, who should be up front?
Djibril Cisse has started each of the last three games (via Soccerbase). However, he has only had three shots on target in 270 minutes, with only one of these resulting in a goal (via FourFourTwo Stats App).
For a striker who was once prolific—including over the latter half of last season—Cisse's stats have been below average so far. With just 24 shots in 11 appearances (via WhoScored), it is the on-target tally that concerns both fans and manager the most.
Cisse has troubled the goalkeeper only once in his last two games, as shown above. He needs to get back on song and fast. However, if he is isolated against Manchester United, this will not improve his confidence. Instead, it will set the striker's progress back even further.
Junior Hoilett should start up top, with Adel Taarabt sat just behind him, simply because Hoilett is the only player who seems to have an attacking instinct at the moment.
Honourable Mention: Jose Bosingwa
If Fabio da Silva was available for selection, then Jose Bosingwa would most definitely have made it on to this list.
Alas, the loan deal prevents him from playing and therefore Jose is a better bet than Clint Hill or Nedum Onuoha, judging by their previous performances at full-back.
When is Kieron Dyer back?