There is one match left in the Sky Bet Championship weekend and it is a huge one in the race for the play-offs as the two teams either side of the play-off divide meet at Kenilworth Road when Luton Town host QPR.
The incentive for these two teams is pretty simple. Whoever comes away from the match with the win will finish the weekend in fourth place in the table while the losers will be outside the play-off zone again. This match didn’t need any extra spice but that gives it some.
Where to watch
The match will be shown live and in full on the Sky Sports Main Event and Sky Sports Football channels. The build-up in Bedfordshire begins at 11.30am with the match kicking off at 12 noon.
All season long Luton Town have been performing below what their numbers suggest in terms of league position. These things generally catch up with each other though and that has happened since the turn of the year with the Hatters going on such a run that heading into the weekend only Fulham had picked up more points in the second tier in 2022 than Nathan Jones’ charges. One reason for that is their incredible home form.
Luton have won five of their last seven at Kenilworth Road in the league and that includes holding Fulham and beating Bournemouth. The only team to leave that part of Bedfordshire with a win in 2022 were Chelsea and they had to pull out all the stops to do that. Luton have won six of their last eight in the league and are dreaming of completing their incredible rise through the leagues from non-league oblivion in just nine years, which would be an amazing achievement.
While Luton are a side on the up in this division it has to be said that QPR are going the other way. They have won just one of their last seven in the league and are dropping down the table like a stone. It wasn’t too long ago they were ready to pounce for automatic promotion and now they are having to battle just to be involved in the play-offs come the end of the season. The big concern for them going into this match is their away form.
Rangers have lost their last three in the league on their travels and haven’t scored in any of them so they won’t be feeling particularly great about life here. It is four defeats in six in the league overall for the Londoners and they bombed out of the FA Cup in that spell as well so there is certainly room for improvement for Mark Warburton’s men. Injuries haven’t helped them at times but most clubs have them at this time of year.
Sign up for a Boylesports account to get up to £25 in free bets! Perfect offer for this Sky Bet Championship! Click the image below for this great offer! New accounts only. 18+ T&Cs apply. Gamble Aware.
Luton assistant boss Mick Harford confirmed that his side will once again miss their captain Sonny Bradley who is back in training but the match will come too soon for him. Gabe Osho is out as well while Alex Palmer is likely to remain on an emergency loan.
QPR have a bit of an issue between the sticks with Seny Dieng and Jordan Archer both missing this match. Dion Sanderson remains suspended as well but there is a hope that Stefan Johansen will be able to return to the side.
There is very much a case to be presented that Luton Town are value in this match at odds against. All the metrics and current form points to them winning this match on home soil but the only thing that puts me off tipping the team I support is the bang ordinary record they have against QPR. In saying that, they had similar records against Millwall, Stoke, West Brom and one or two others this season and they have put them all right but I’ll get enough enjoyment from a Luton win without backing it regardless of the value on offer.
The angle I’m going to take in this match is the cards. These two sets of fans don’t like each other at the best of times but the fact that a Luton fan ended up fighting for his life after the reverse fixture certainly isn’t going to help relations so there will be a feisty atmosphere inside Kenilworth Road on Sunday. That can lead to some bookings. There were six cards in the reverse meeting and the referee on Sunday, Josh Smith, has dished out 124 yellows and four reds in just 32 matches this season. He has officiated these two sides once each and in the QPR game he reffed he handed out seven yellows and four in the Luton game he did in the FA Cup in one of the tamest cup ties you’ll see. He looks a serial card merchant and the derby like intensity of this match should give the arbiter ample chance to bring a fourth card out of the pocket.
Back Over 3.5 cards for a 3/10 stake at 1.80 with Betfair
Back it here: