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Aug 11, 2021 at 7.45pm UK
Leyton OrientLeyton Orient
QPRQueens Park Rangers
QPR win 5-3 on penalties
Drinan (74')
Wood (64')
Dickie (16')
Odubajo (49')

Preview: Leyton Orient vs. Queens Park Rangers - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: Leyton Orient vs. Queens Park Rangers - prediction, team news, lineups:
Sports Mole previews Wednesday's EFL Cup clash between Leyton Orient and Queens Park Rangers, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
Sports Mole

After both sides kicked off their league campaigns on Saturday, Leyton Orient and Queens Park Rangers will square off in EFL Cup action on Wednesday, with a place in the second round on the line.

The two teams had identical starts to the league season, albeit two divisions apart, as Leyton Orient drew 1-1 with Salford City while their visitors were held to the same scoreline by Millwall in the Championship opener.

Match preview

After a finishing 17th in the curtailed 2019-20 season, their first back in League Two after a brief drop into the fifth tier, Leyton Orient had a much better campaign last year, consolidating their place with a commendable 11th-placed finish.

As a result, the natural progression for this season would not only be to establish themselves in the top half, but also to aim for a playoff place, with three teams earning automatic promotion and sides down to seventh spot battling in the playoffs for a place in League One.

They faced a tough test in the opening game, travelling to take on Salford City, one of the favourites to win promotion, and Kenny Jackett's men came away with a creditable point.

Omar Beckles put them ahead on the half-hour mark, but Matty Willock drew the hosts level before half time and neither side were able to find a decisive goal.

Orient should certainly take the positives from an away point against a heavily-fancied side to start the campaign, and they have the chance to pick up another impressive result when they host Championship opposition in the form of Mark Warburton's QPR.

The feeling around the Hoops heading into the Championship campaign is certainly somewhat similar to that of their opponents in League Two, with the hopes of an impressive season battling at the top end of the division.

In a much more sustainable model than the regime that saw them reach and drop out of the top flight twice last decade, the London outfit have taken huge strides towards a return to the Premier League, and after an impressive end to last season, finishing in ninth spot, they look in a strong position to push on and battle for a place in the top six this year.

Heading into the campaign with plenty of optimism, QPR began with a home clash against Millwall, but they did not get off to a good start as Jed Wallace put the Lions ahead inside the first 15 minutes.

Robert Dickie drew the Hoops level on the half-hour mark, but Warburton's men were unable to find a decisive goal, eventually settling for a point against resolute opposition.

Before they return to league action at the weekend, the Hoops will be keen to put a cup victory on the board to settle the mood and build confidence.

Leyton Orient form (all competitions):
  • D

Queens Park Rangers form (all competitions):
  • D

Team News

With only a short gap between Wednesday's cup game and the upcoming league outing on Saturday, Leyton Orient may choose to give rests to some of their crucial players, with 36-year-old midfielder Darren Pratley a likely candidate to be rotated with priority on a strong start to the league season.

Craig Clay should still lead the midfield as Jackett looks to find a balance between rotation and giving Orient the best chance of progressing.

The front line will again be led by Aaron Drinan, who joined in the summer transfer window from Ipswich Town.

Warburton will look to keep QPR in his favoured system of three at the back with a front two, although he could take the opportunity of a cup game against League Two opposition to take a look at his squad players.

Moses Odubajo should again be deployed on the right-hand side, while Norwich City loanee Sam McCallum could be handed his first start for the Hoops on the opposite flank.

Midfielder Sam Field is ruled out through injury, meaning Andre Dozzell will likely start alongside Faysal Bettache in the engine room.

Experienced attacker Albert Adomah could also feature from the start as part of heavy rotation, allowing a rest for Charlie Austin in preparation for Saturday's Championship clash with Hull City.

Leyton Orient possible starting lineup:
Vigouroux; James, Beckles, Happe, Wood; Clay, Young, Kyprianou; Kemp, Drinan, Smith

Queens Park Rangers possible starting lineup:
Archer; Kakay, Dickie, Dunne; Odubajo, Dozzell, Bettache, McCallum; Willock; Dykes, Adomah

We say: Leyton Orient 0-2 Queens Park Rangers

Mark Warburton could give chances to players outside of his strongest XI as he looks to gain a greater understanding of his squad, but we still see a rotated QPR side having far too much for Leyton Orient.

The former Brentford and Rangers manager has brought about a set system with the Hoops, and that impressive structure should see them over the line and through to the second round with squad players keen to impress.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting that both teams will score (BTTS - yes) in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.BTTS Yes:data

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