Date : Thursday, 20 July 2017
Time: 13.15 BST
Venue: Schwaz, Austria
Streaming: Free Streaming for LUTV subscribers.
The first “official” preseason match will take place on 20 July, 2017 in Schwaz Austria as Leeds United take on Bundesliga side Borussia Mönchengladbach. Gladbach will be featuring a split squad, as they have a friendly scheduled with French side Nice a few hours later elsewhere.
Monchengladbach will be splitting their squad on Thursday. One game v Leeds at 2.15pm, another v Nice at 6pm. #lufc— Phil Hay (@PhilHayYEP) July 18, 2017
Borussia Mönchengladbach played in last year’s edition of the Champions League, but faced the “group of death” with Manchester City, Barcelona, and Celtic FC. They finished 3rd and went on to play in the Europa League. They finished 9th in the Bundesliga last year after a shaky start to the season.
No word has come out yet about which players will feature for the club for the friendly against Leeds. Not very many household names in the Gladbach squad, but Leeds fans may be familiar with West Ham United loanee Reece Oxford who is on a year loan to the Bundesliga side after a unsuccessful loan spell at Reading FC last season in the Championship. Chelsea’s Belgium international Eden Harzard’s brother Thorgan also plays for Gladbach.
Leeds will be looking to put the bitter taste of the “training match” defeat against Bursaspor behind them with a strong showing against a team that may be in the running to grab European places in the Bundesliga. At the very least, the team needs to start converting chances, as the team was wasteful against lowly North Ferriby United in East Yorkshire last week and was wasteful against Bursaspor on Monday. Of course, it appears that it was a focus of training yesterday, so hopefully the team will start to find its rhythm and start putting the ball into the back of the net.
Make no mistake, Borussia Mönchengladbach will be the toughest test this preseason for Leeds United, and going in expecting to pull off a win might be a little unrealistic. As we’ve said before, preseason matches mean absolutely nothing. They are more about putting the players into game situations so that the players can gel together and play like a team. While a “win” would be nice, it’s not exactly realistic. Gladbach is a team that would likely be in the running for European places in the Premier League, so there is going to be a gulf of class with some of the players that could feature for the club.
Of course, it Leeds wins the match going away, all caution will be thrown to the win and we’ll all be planning the parade route for the spring. MOT