We start today’s gamethread with Brighton & Hove Albion. Yes, Brighton. Eight points ahead of us in the table, sitting just one point shy of the top, the Seagulls hosted middle-of-the-table Ipswich Town on Valentine’s Day and couldn’t come away with the three points they needed to pass Newcastle United: the Tractor Boys played them level, at the Amex, and the match deservedly finished 1-1.
Since adding our old friend Toumani Diagouraga to the starting XI, Mick McCarthy’s boys have drawn Reading and Brighton and beaten Aston Villa, 1-0... at Villa Park.
Ipswich Town, especially at Portman Road, is not to be underestimated today.
On our side, Leeds United bounced back from losses to Huddersfield and Cardiff by topping Bristol City on Valentine’s Day with a 2-0 win (wait, what? 2-1? okay fine), and they’ll be looking to continue adding points to their six point lead over 7th place Norwich City today. Yes, it still might be early to be talking about play off places, but we were talking about it here in December, so get over it. The table matters, and with only 14 matches left in this season, we have to get points whenever and wherever we can.
TABLE: No wins for the top two tonight.— Sky Bet Championship (@SkyBetChamp) February 14, 2017
The chasing pack...@htafcdotcom @ReadingFC @LUFC @swfc
...all picked up three points! pic.twitter.com/OoMiNGVm84
For this one, Anthony Linley wrote up our full, Mick McCarthy focused preview, and we’ll have all the info you need for this match down below, updated as it comes in. Join us in the comments or on social media as we live-tweet the match on Twitter.
Don’t let us down, lads. All three points on the road against Ipswich and we continue the fight for #Promotion2017. Dropped points at this stage... well... let’s not do that. MOT.
Ipswich Town vs. Leeds United
EFL Championship fixture
Portman Road, Ipswich
LUTV, BBC Radio Leeds, International Listings
Saturday, February 17, 2017
07:00am PT / 10:00am ET / 3:00pm BT
Leeds United starting XI
Green, Ayling, Bartley, Jansson, Berardi, Vieira, O’Kane, Sacko, Hernandez, Dallas, Wood
Subs: Silvestri, Cooper, Bridcutt, Pedraza, Barrow, Roofe, Doukara
Ipswich Town starting XI
Bialkowski, Spence, Chambers, Berra, Knudsen, Kenlock, Skuse, Ward, Huws, McGoldrick, Sears
Subs: Gerken, Emmanuel, Smith, Bishop, Bru, Moore, Pitman
Johnny Wakefield: 2-1 Leeds. Ipswich likes to defend, as they allowed just one goal to Brighton and Aston Villa combined in the last two matches, but Derby County walked into Portman Road and scored 3 less than three weeks ago... and we’re better than Derby. I think we score twice (Wood and Barrow) and keep them to only one.
Anthony Linley: 1-1 draw. The odds are about right: it will be a low scoring and unpredictable encounter. As much as I’d like the win, considering Ipswich’s taste for draws, I have to say 1-1.
James Mahoney: 1-1 draw. Form away from Elland Road has been a little suspect over the last few weeks for the Whites. Portman Road is a difficult place to go to and take the points, I expect a tight score draw.