How could Leeds United top Tuesday’s dramatic penalty shoot-out victory in the EFL Cup? Three points on Saturday may go some of the way.
A win will catapult the Whites within touching distance of the play offs, and Manager Garry Monk is aware that the League Cup is only a distraction. Speaking to LUTV after the match, a smiling Monk said that as much as he wants to enjoy that victory, he is focused on Saturday’s game.
I for one am enjoying our Cup run, but it’s clearly the bread and butter games of the Championship that matter most.
Saturday brings to Elland Road another (dare I say it?) winnable game against Burton Albion. Leeds United and Burton Albion have never met before in any competition, so this fixture is uncharted waters for both clubs.
What do we know about Burton Albion?
Burton Albion’s Manager is Nigel Clough. He is no stranger to Elland Road, having accompanied his father there as a small boy (for 44 days). He will no doubt enjoy putting a stop to Leeds United supporters’ post-Tuesday party given the chance.
Formed in 1950, Burton are one of the new kids on the block, joining the Football League as late as 2009. They were promoted from League One last season with the highest Football League finish in their history.
Albion finished 2nd, only 3 points from being crowned League One Champions, showing just how vital one result can be. Being promoted from League One was their 2nd successive promotion, and sitting mid-table at 15th place in the Championship, they’ll again finish with the best placement in their history.
Their biggest win of the season so far is 3-1 against Sheffield Wednesday, and their latest win came against Birmingham City (2-0), a club that beat us 2-1 back in the difficult month of August. This suggests they could be a handful.
At least we like their nickname. For most, football and beer goes hand in hand, and the “Brewers” have an excellent nickname that reflects Burton’s brewing heritage.
Australian international midfielder Jackson Irvine is the Brewers most expensive signing at a reported £330,000. He is also their top scorer with 5. Considering the sporting rivalry that New Zealanders enjoy with Aussies, Chris Wood will be relishing this duel (as will our own Ben Mallis).
They have no new injury news ahead of this clash and Clough will be fielding his strongest side. Leeds, meanwhile could welcome back Pablo Hernandez and Stuart Dallas to the squad after their recent lay-offs through injury
From the last 5 league games, Leeds have W2 L2 D1. Burton Albion have W2 L1 D2.
Leeds United vs. Burton Albion
EFL Championship Fixture
Elland Road, Leeds
LUTV, BBC Radio Leeds, International Streams
Saturday 29 October 2016
7:00am PT / 10:00am ET / 3:00pm BT
Leeds United’s predicted XI
Green, Ayling, Bartley, Jansson, Taylor, Sacko, Phillips, Hernandez, O’Kane, Antonsson, Wood
Burton Albion predicted XI
McLaughlin, Brayford, McFadzean, Turner, Akins, Naylor, Palmer, Irvine, Dyer, Ward O'Grady
If Burton’s last 5 league games are anything to go by, they are actually in better form than United. But when momentum is rolling and confidence is high, like it is, the Whites can be unstoppable. 2-0 Leeds.