This feels different. Leeds United and Elland Road are the focus of the footballing world once again. Life is good!
A sell out crowd will welcome table-topping Newcastle United into Yorkshire and bare witness to the biggest challenge faced by Garry Monk since taking the reigns back in June.
Ahead of the biggest match to hit Elland Road in years, we have your prematch reading sorted. Anthony Linley has previewed what to expect on the field today. Anatoliy Ivantchouk has whipped out the crystal ball and analysed potential man of the match candidates should United claim victory. Finally, our fearless leader Johnny Wakefield sat down with SB Nation’s resident Magpie experts from Coming Home Newcastle to get an outsiders perspective of the big match.
Make no mistake, a great challenge awaits the Whites today. All the same, the upcoming 90 minutes of football present an opportunity for this football club to prove that the revolution is well and truly underway.
One promotion contender is definitely playing at Elland Road today, a victory by the hosts will see the guaranteed emergence of a second.
United can rise to fourth with a win, and three points today could set up the season. With an expected victory awaiting the club against bottom placed Rotherham United F.C. next week, victory over Newcastle could prove the launching pad for those dreams we all share as Leeds United fans.
Leeds United vs. Newcastle United
EFL Championship fixture
Elland Road, Leeds
Sky Sports 1, LUTV, BBC Radio Leeds, International Listings
Sunday, November 20, 2016
5:15am PT / 8:15am ET / 1:15pm BT
Leeds United’s starting XI
Green, Ayling, Jansson, Bartley, Taylor, Phillips, O'Kane, Vieira, Doukara, Phillips, Roofe, Wood
Subs: Silvestri, Cooper, Sacko, Berardi, Grimes, Dallas, Antonsson
Newcastle United’s starting XI
Darlow, Anita, Lascelles, Clark, Dummett, Colback, Shelvey, Richie, Gouffran, Perez, Gayle
Subs: Sels, Yedlin, Mbemba, Hayden, Diame, Atsu, Mitrovic
Johnny Wakefield: 2-0 Newcastle. Sadly, I think they’re just too good for us at the moment, though I’m hoping we’ll get some reinforcements in the January window. I’d like to say otherwise, but with Pablo out our attack suffers, and without our best midfield, I think Newcastle will dominate the time of possession and have plenty of chances. I love our back line, but you can only ask so much. The return fixture in April will be more interesting.
James Mahoney: 1-0 Leeds. I think Leeds will score early through Roofe. Newcastle will dominate for the rest of the game. However, they won't be able to penetrate our well organised defence. Leeds to take all three points and cement themselves as serious promotion contenders. MOT
Anatoliy Ivantchouk: 2-1 Newcastle. The Newcastle defence will shutdown Wood, but that will present an opening for another Leeds player to get on the score sheet in a moment of chaos for Newcastle. Leeds will open the scoring before Newcastle wake up and Rafa yells at them in Spanish to get their attack going. Jonjo will play with purpose, and in the end, the Magpies score their second with about 15 minutes to go leaving Monk thinking of what could have been.
Sean Ryan: I'm flat to the walls in Belfast at the moment but I just want to say mean things to both Johnny and Anatoliy, you traitors! Leeds to win 3-2.
Joshua Gilbert: I think the game will end in a 2-2 draw. It will be a game where both offences shine, but neither team will have an advantage to pull away.
Ben Mallis: 2-0 Newcastle. I’m in lockstep with Johnny on this one. Newcastle remain a superior football side, and while the gap is certainly closing, defeating the class of this division looks an ambition too far at the moment. Also don’t underestimate the power of the international break. United has played three times this season after a break of more than eight days, with each contest ending in a loss.
The gaffer is ready, and so are we here at Through It All Together. Johnny will be live tweeting the match over at @ThruItAllLIVE, while the rest of our staff will be sharing their thoughts all across the twitterverse. Come say hello and enjoy what will undoubtedly be a magical afternoon in Yorkshire. MOT