Croatia star and centre-back set to return for QPR

Rangers welcome back Onuoha and Kranjcar for trip to Reading

Nedum Onuoha is set to return to the QPR defence as Harry Redknapp takes his promotion-chasing side to Reading on Saturday afternoon.

Centre-back Onuoha returned to training this week after recovering from a hamstring injury which has kept him since the 0-0 draw against Brighton almost two months ago.

Meanwhile, Niko Kranjcar could also feature against the Royals as he recovers from his own hamstring problem. The Croatia international has made an impressive start to his Rangers career since joining on a season-long loan from Dynamo Kiev on transfer deadline day.

Redknapp will be without Alejandro Faurlin, who is set to miss the rest of the season with a knee injury, while fellow midfielder Tom Carroll also misses out through injury.

The manager may also rest veteran Republic of Ireland international Richard Dunne, whose fitness is under scrutiny after an extended run of games in the first team.

Dunne missed the majority of last season through injury, but, in Onuoha’s absence, has been a regular starter alongside Clint Hill at the heart of QPR’s defence.

Dunne joined on a one-year deal, but part of that deal allowed Rangers to release him if his injury problems recurred. However, Redknapp has been delighted with the veteran defender.

Redknapp said: “When we took Richard I had no doubts, I was desperate to get him, I’d tried to sign him over the last seven or eight years and I thought he could make a massive difference to this football club. That’s what he has done.

“He’s not missed a game and trained most days. But playing three games in a week was a big test for him. Nedum wasn’t fit, otherwise we would have chopped around a bit. He needs a rest, we’ve got a fortnight off after tomorrow so that will be good for him.”

image: © Tom Cuppens

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