Queens Park Rangers vs Watford Preview: Hornets set for penultimate pre-season match

The Hornets travel to Loftus Road as they take on Championship side Queens Park Rangers in their penultimate pre-season match.

Queens Park Rangers vs Watford Preview: Hornets set for penultimate pre-season match
The Hornets are set to take on Queens Park Rangers at Loftus Road (Photo: VAVEL)

Watford are set to take on Championship side Queens Park Rangers in their penultimate pre-season match at Loftus Road.

The Hornets have played four matches so far this summer under new head coach Walter Mazzarri, and they remain unbeaten going into the friendly with QPR.

The Italian coach took his squad to Austria for a week-long tour, where they played two games against Union Berlin and Anzhi Makhachkala.

Cathcart believes the QPR test will be a different level (Photo: Getty Images)
Cathcart believes the QPR test will be a different level (Photo: Getty Images)

Hornets to give new summer signings run-out

The Hornets beat German second division side Union Berlin 3-1 before being held to a goalless draw with Russian top-flight side Anzhi.

And they are set to unveil their new home strip during the game with the Championship side, as Northern Ireland international Craig Cathcart is set to play against for the Hornets.

The defender played a big part in Northern Ireland’s successful Euro 2016 campaign, and he is to go head-to-head with QPR’s Conor Washington, who was also in the squad with Cathcart.

Watford will have two games to give the new summer signings a chance to embed in the side, with Jerome Sinclair, Isaac Success, Christian Kabasele, Juan Camilo Zuniga and Brice Dja Djedje getting the chance to stake a claim ahead of the new season.

The five new signings may well feature in the game with Rangers, with Mazzarri looking to get the new 3-5-2 formation drilled into his side.

QPR drew 1-1 with Northampton Town (Photo: Getty Images)
QPR drew 1-1 with Northampton Town (Photo: Getty Images)

QPR begin new season next weekend

QPR are just one week away from getting their new campaign underway as they take on Leeds United next Saturday, and the game with the Hornets is the final game before then.

And Watford defender Cathcart believes is will be a “step up in level” because pre-season matches gives the squad a chance to get themselves ready for the new season.

“They will be expecting to push for promotion this year and they’ve got some good players. It will be another chance to get a minutes few under the belt,” he told the clubs official website.

Rangers’ Jay Emmanuel-Thomas, who was once on Arsenal’s books, scored a brace as they beat Aldershot Town 3-2 before they beat Dutch champions PSV 1-0.

Their pre-season followed with a 3-1 defeat to Groningen, which was put to bed as they managed to draw 1-1 with both Northampton TownWycombe Wanderers and Burton Albion thereafter.

Predicted Lineups

Queens Park Rangers (4-4-1-1): Ingram; Furlong, Caulker, Hall, Kpekawa, Washington, Henry, Cousins Doughty, El Khayati, Emmanuel-Thomas

Watford (3-5-2): Gomes, Kabasele, Cathcart, Dja Djedje, Zuniga, Watson, Capoue, Doucoure, Holebas, Sinclair, Deeney