It’s a crying shame that Leeds United’s passionate fans aren’t able to pack Elland Road in the club’s first Premier League season in 16 years.
In normal times, and hopefully once again before too long, the roof of the famous Yorkshire stadium would be lifted to the sound of ‘Marching on Together’ the Leeds United anthem. Instead the loyal Whites are following their team on their phones and on the television…and it’s going pretty well.
Head coach Marcelo Bielsa hasn’t been slow to splash the cash and spent over £100m on recruits to make Leeds ready for the Premier League, as we reported here at SBOTOP recently. They have big ambitions of securing survival without too many scares, and maybe having a tilt at the FA Cup.
Project Big Picture a ‘disgrace’
But now they are back in the big time, the chairman has reacted with disgust at the recent announcement of ‘Project Big Picture’ put forward by Liverpool and Manchester United.
Andrea Radrizzani has called the project, which will give more money to the EFL, while increasing the voting rights and power of the ‘Big Six’, a disgrace. He views Leeds as an equal to the Northwest giants now, there may be some way to go but they are battling toe to toe again with Liverpool once again.
So what else is happening at Elland Road?
International injuries to centre back pair
Leeds’ two centre-halves have returned from international duty carrying injuries, which may keep them out of forthcoming fixtures. Summer signing Diego Llorente withdrew from the Spain squad after picking up a muscle strain in training; he was an unused substitute in Spain’s win over Switzerland but didn’t travel to Ukraine.
Meanwhile, Leeds captain Liam Cooper was a surprise omission from Scotland’s team which faced Slovakia, as his international coach Steve Clarke confirmed he too had picked up a knock.
Bielsa will make further fitness checks on both.
Fond farewell to Leeds Championship star
One of Leeds 2020 Championship title winning team has set off for pastures new after the club announced that full-back Barry Douglas has taken the option of a one-year loan at Championship club Blackburn Rovers.
He’s the first full member of the promotion winning team to leave the club after falling down the pecking order behind Stuart Dallas and Leif Davis at full-back.
Meanwhile, fellow defender Gaetano Beradi has been given an extended contract, which keeps him at Elland Road for the rest of the 2020/21 season. The Swiss defender is the longest serving player at the club and made 22 appearances during the promotion-winning campaign and is sure to be a key member of the squad again this term, having recovered from an injury picked up in the penultimate game of last season.
Progress in Premier League 2020 results
Leeds fans will be more than happy with the achievements their club have made over the opening four games of their first top flight campaign in 16 years. The club wants to stay of the relegation picture in the Premier League 2020 betting odds, and with strong recruitment in the summer and a solid start the signs are good.
There has been clear progress over the first four fixtures. The Whites opened with a plum of a game against old rivals and reigning Premier League champions Liverpool. It was a belter of a match too, exceeding all expectations as Leeds fought back to equalise three times before losing to Mo Salah’s second penalty of the game on 88 minutes.
A second 4-3 result went the right way for Leeds as they beat fellow new boys Fulham. It was a welcome first three points in the bag; but having gone 4-1 ahead, questions were asked around why they allowed Fulham, who are expected to struggle this term, to come back to 4-3 and dominate the second half.
Bielsa’s side answered their critics perfectly, keeping a clean sheet in the following game, a 1-0 win in the Yorkshire derby against Sheffield United, as Patrick Bamford struck in the 88th minute.
But the best performance of all came in the second half of Leeds’ last game against Manchester City. After the Sky Blues went ahead and threatened to overrun their opponents, marquee signing Rodrigo seized on a rare goalkeeping error by Ederson to snatch a well-earned point for the Whites.
And next up Leeds face Wolves on Monday night in a clash of two giants who have awoken from their slumber. It should be another cracker!
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