Sunderland vs. Queens Park Rangers: Harry Redknapp begins difficult task

Julian Finney

Harry Redknapp debuts as Queens Park Rangers manager against Sunderland on Tuesday.

When Harry Redknapp took over Tottenham Hotspur in 2008, they had amassed two points from their first nine games and sat in the relegation places. That team had mid-table talent at worst, and just needed a bit of self-belief and a common sense manager to pull them off the bottom. Harry's new job presents him with a slightly different task.

Queens Park Rangers are not as talented as that team, but they have too much talent to have just four points from their first 13 games. They're already seven points back from safety, and there's no shortage of quality in this season's Premier League. Their Tuesday opponents, Sunderland, are also in a bit of a surprise fight at the bottom and are underachieving as well, though not to the degree of QPR.

Look for Sunderland's attacking set pieces to be a key part of this match. QPR isn't great at defending them, Redknapp certainly hasn't done anything to fix that since arriving, and Sunderland have a plethora of quality dead ball strikers. QPR's biggest advantage should be in the center of the pitch, especially with Lee Cattermole missing.

Sunderland injuries and suspensions

Out: Lee Cattermole, John O'Shea, Wes Brown.

Queens Park Rangers injuries and suspensions

Out: Bobby Zamora, Andy Johnson. In doubt: Park Ji-Sung, Jose Bosingwa.

Park has been out with a knee injury, while Bosingwa missed this weekend's game with a virus. Both should be in the 18-man squad and in contention to start on Tuesday. Cattermole and O'Shea picked up injuries over the weekend and will not be fit in time for this match.

Match date/time: Tuesday, 7:45 p.m. local, 2:45 p.m. ET

Venue: Stadium of Light, Sunderland, England

TV: ESPN Deportes (U.S. - Spanish), Sportsnet World (Canada)

Online: ESPN3

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