At 3pm on Saturday afternoon Queens Park Rangers make the short trip down to Stamford Bridge, to face Premier League leaders Chelsea in what looks like a daunting West London derby.
QPR sit in 19th position, just three points above Burnley at the foot of the table. In stark contrast, Chelsea perch prettily at the summit, unbeaten and four points clear of Southampton and six ahead of Manchester City, their nearest rival.
The Hoops claimed the defeat of Aston Villa in their previous outing, running out 2-0 victors. That result followed a spriteful performance in a dramatic, high-octane 3-2 home loss to Liverpool. Prior to that their triumph over Villa, Harry Redknapp's side were without a win in five, having only won twice to date in their league campaign. But could the recent promising performances signify a potential resurgence?
Mourinho's men look utterly formidable
On the other side of affairs, José Mourinho's Chelsea have been flying high. Despite being pegged back to a 1-1 draw at Manchester United, the Blues are comfortably clear at the top and are yet to lose in any competition. Mourinho's men have only failed to gain all three points away at Manchester United and Manchester City in the league and, disappointingly, at home to Schalke in the Champions League.
QPR were shaken by a major setback on Wednesday, when The FA announced their decision to fine Rio Ferdinand £25,000 and deliver the centre-half a three match ban. The suspension comes after the veteran defender made derogatory comments on Twitter towards another user's mother. Although the £25,000 fine won't so much as dent Ferdinand's bank statement, the ban will come as a huge blow for both him and the club.
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Costa and Ramires back in contention
At the opposite end of the spectrum, Chelsea have been delivered the incredible news that talismanic striker Diego Costa will be fit and available to make a return for the clash, following a viral infection and an on-going niggling hamstring injury. Additionally, Brazilian midfielder Ramires is available having recovered from a groin strain. The returns were confirmed by José Mourinho on Tuesday, saying that 'normally' both players would be ready for action.
As second-to-bottom QPR come up against table-toppers Chelsea sparks are guaranteed to fly. QPR are beginning to re-find their feet in England's highest tier, but are still vulnerable at the back. Chelsea have struck in blistering vein of formform, and with the return of Diego Costa boosting them in front of goal, end-to-end action is all but a guarantee.
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