The EFL Championship concludes on Wednesday night after a rather unorthodox end to the season. The Baggies, thanks to a heroic effort from Stoke, find themselves on the verge of promotion in a must win game that will define their season. But what is at stake for QPR?
Luckily for Bilic’s men the team they come up against have little to play for: sitting in 14th place, clear of relegation and with the task of reaching play off positions numerically impossible as well, the team’s motivation going into the game will undoubtedly be a strange one.
It has been a turbulent season for the Hoops; despite scoring 65 goals this season, a feat only bettered by the current top three, they have been found out defensively and the leaking of 74 goals has left them occupying the middle ground of the league table.
In their penultimate game of the season they ran out winners against fellow London side Millwall, who have since seen their play off hopes dashed, and Bilic will be hoping that QPR have given all they have to offer for the rest of the season.
They also find themselves in the strange position that a win against the Baggies could allow for their biggest rivals Brentford, should they beat Barnsley, the opportunity to clinch the last automatic promotion spot.
Likewise, a win against the Baggies could also make way for Fulham to take second place should Brentford lose their last game. So whilst QPR themselves do not have a lot riding on the game, the chance to deny promotion to their biggest rivals Brentford, who are located just six miles away, by losing to West Brom leaves the club in a curious position going into the final game.
From a fan point of view you only have to scroll through Twitter to see what their take is on the issue.
There is also the added incentive that should West Brom gain promotion, QPR would be set to receive a bonus payment that was set as a clause in the transfer of Darnell Furlong.
The whole scenario puts an added edge to what is already a season defining game for West Brom and Brentford alike. The idea of QPR ‘rolling over’ really is unimaginable as it would be borderline cheating and would tarnish what has been another classic Championship season with unpredictable ebb and flows.
But it will certainly be interesting to see how the R’s lineup. Eberechi Eze, who has been their top performer all season, has caught the eye of many top-flight clubs as he enters his final year of contract, so it will be interesting to see what will happen to him during the summer.
Similarly, Bright Osayi-Samuel, who was once an Albion target, seems to have moved into the final stages of a move to Club Brugge.
Having named just six substitutes for their game against Millwall, their squad is ever-depleting. With Albion’s strength and depth it really is a game that is theirs to lose. With the hiccup against Huddersfield thankfully amounting to nothing, we hope and expect Bilic and the team to get promotion over the line in what would be a fitting send off for Albion legend Chris Brunt.
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