Leeds is staring at a critical match Saturday with Bristol Rovers visiting Elland Road. With Bristol holding a one-point advantage over Leeds at the eight spot in the table, Gary McAllister's club cannot afford to drop points. After only three matches Oldham and Leicester are already showing themselves as the class of the early League One season and Leeds needs to keep up with them.
Bristol is coming off a 6-1 destruction of woeful Hereford, that looks like it is ready to skip the campaign, do not pass go and go immediately to League Two. While I believe Bristol is a fine squad, that could make a serious run for a playoff sport, this match was a one-off, akin to Leeds pummeling of Chester City.
They will stack and pack the midfield with a 3-5-2 but for the most part, do not have the pace to truly counter-attack against Leeds. Their highly disciplined play and organization structure in lines is their strong-suit as well as set-plays but for the most part their strike-force is slightly lacking offensive firepower and creativity in the midfield. However they will sternly capitalize on errors and create absolute havoc on set plays and Leeds will need to be much sharper defending corners or Rickie Lambert, in particular, will light up the score-sheet. Leeds needs to mark him tightly as it'll greatly compromise Bristols attack and equally be more disciplined in the back-line. Clearly Paul Telfer should be in the starting grid for Leeds and lock-down this concern.
While I am being highly repetitive, Leeds needs to use the same or the near the same lineup used against Crystal Palace with a highly aggressive attacking style. Bristol will attempt to slow the pace of the match down but if controlled and at a high work-rate, Leeds will be rip open their defensive wall as easy as Crystal Palace, with the same results.
I will be posting a full review after the match concludes. Until then, We’re Marching On Together.