With the English Championship season getting underway this weekend, we’re looking back at how the clubs that feature Caltex Socceroos are shaping up ahead of what promises to be another action-packed campaign.
We start with London outfit Queens Park Rangers who will be hoping new manager Steve McClaren can mastermind a serious push for Premier League promotion in 2018/19.
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And Caltex Socceroos playmaker Massimo Luongo will again be a midfield lynchpin for QPR.
The 25-year-old is arguably approaching the best form of his career and should start in the club’s Championship opener at Preston North End this weekend.
QPR’S PRE-SEASON RESULTS
QPR 3-3 Charlton Athletic
QPR 3-0 Barnet
Staines Town 0-7 QPR
AFC Wimbledon 0-1 QPR
Hoffenheim 2-2 QPR
Hoffenheim 3-0 QPR
QPR 3-0 Union Berlin
Luongo went to the 2018 FIFA World Cup™ with the Caltex Socceroos and as a result was a latecomer to QPR’s pre-season.
He began training with the rest of the squad in the middle of July and has taken part in two of the last three pre-season friendlies.
The first came on July 21 when he got through 45 minutes as QPR came from two goals down to draw 2-2 with Bundesliga side Hoffenheim.
After falling behind to a brace from David Otto, McClaren’s men got back into the game through a Toni Leistner header before Ryan Manning completed the comeback with just two minutes left.
“It was tough – the first game of pre-season always is,” Luongo said on QPR’s website.
“It was good to get some minutes and to learn what the boys have been working on for the last two or three weeks.
“I am a little bit behind fitness-wise and in terms of the structure of how we play but I thought the boys did really well and we looked good out there.”
He also started QPR’s final pre-season clash over the weekend, a dominant 3-0 win over Union Berlin in what was the perfect hitout before their Championship season opener.