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Monday 19
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Watford

QPR target FA Cup shock

12th February 2019, 15:48 by Andy Schooler

Watford are in Championship club QPR's sights ahead of this weekend's FA Cup showdown.

Rangers boss Steve McClaren is eyeing the Premier League side's scalp ahead of Friday's clash, which under the competition's new rules must be decided on the night.

He said: "Anything can happen in the FA Cup. We're at home, it's on a Friday night under the lights, it's on TV. It's an opportunity for certain individuals and the team to show themselves against Premier League opponents.

"Watford are very strong and we'll have to put a top performance in to get any kind of result."

The Hornets have made wholesale changes in the previous rounds, seeing off Woking and Newcastle, but having moved towards the latter stages, boss Javi Gracia will consider putting out a stronger side at Loftus Road.

Contrary to some reports, Jose Holebas will be available for selection. The left-back picked up his 10th yellow card of the season against Everton on Saturday and will now have to serve a two-game ban. However, the suspension only applies to Premier League games, so he will miss trips to Cardiff and Liverpool.

The FA Cup offers Watford a second chance to qualify for Europe. Gracia has already admitted his side are targeting a seventh-place finish in the Premier League – they currently sit eighth, two points behind Wolves – which could be enough for Europa League football next season.

However, by winning the FA Cup they would guarantee themselves a spot in Europe in 2019/20.

Their only previous European campaign saw them reach the third round of the UEFA Cup in the 1983/84 season.

This article originated on sportinastorm.com

Andy Schooler

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