Match: Leeds United v Bristol City
Date: 15th February 2020
Time: 15.00 GMT, 10.00 ET, 07.00 PST.
Venue: Elland Road, Leeds, West Yorkshire, England
Streaming: iFollow, LUTV.
Leeds United produced a much improved performance against Brentford, but only came away with a point for a 1-1 draw following another high profile error from goalkeeper Kiko Casilla.
Next up is Bristol City at Elland Road. Although Leeds are still 2nd, and Bristol City are 7th, there is now only three points between the two sides - showing how much the league table has closed up following Leeds’ poor run of form.
In terms of performance data it looks good for Leeds overall, but the lack of actual results is taking it’s toll. Bristol City are the opposite, sitting in 22nd in the xG table (courtesy of experimental361.com)
Leeds have only won one of their last six league matches, the 3-2 comeback win over Millwall, whereas Bristol City have won five of their last six. The form looks to be with the Robins, but there is a renewed confidence among the Leeds fanbase following a good performance against Brentford FC, a game which Leeds should have won.
There isn’t much to say previewing the game in terms of Leeds United. Leeds played well, Leeds will be unchanged barring an injury. Marcelo Bielsa confirmed in his press conference that both Patrick Bamford (fans and me personally - fine) and Kiko Casilla (fans and me personally - much less than fine) will start the game.
️ "Casilla will play"— Adam Pope (@apopey) February 13, 2020
Leeds United head coach Marcelo Bielsa confirms that under-fire goalkeeper Kiko Casilla will keep his place at home to Bristol City.
Bristol City had been playing 4-1-4-1 for most games, but last time out against Derby County they played a 4-4-2. They signed Nahki Wells in January following his display of Basketball skills for Queens Park Rangers against Leeds. In theory, he should complement Famara Diedhou well when they play as a front two.
They also signed midfielder Markus Henriksen on loan from Hull City and, very impressively, centre-back Filip Benkovic on loan from Leicester City. Benkovic is a player that Leicester see a big future for, but they thought his development needed a run of football. He could prove to be an excellent signing for them. He will probably play alongside Ashley Williams, who has improved his form after a really poor 18 months, as Tomas Kalas is expected to still be out injured.
Filip Benković gave a 9.45 rating for @BristolCity vs @dcfcofficial and was MOTM, with 1 goal, 97.3% pass completion, 4 interceptions and 1 block. It is the best work for a Bristol City player since @htafc 2 months ago when @Brownhill10 gave a 10 ratinghttps://t.co/31NOhRAxdY pic.twitter.com/uTGzmVjDBP— Real Fantasy Sports (@RFantasySports) February 13, 2020
On the other hand, they did lose their best midfielder to Burnley FC in Josh Brownhill, so you would hope that Leeds will take advantage of that to get on top in midfield.
The wonder is whether the visitors will continue with the 4-4-2. I think they will because Bristol City tend to be involved in high scoring games so I think Lee Johnson will stick with Diedhou and Wells up front.
- "This is what Bristol City are all about!"— Sky Sports Football (@SkyFootball) February 12, 2020
Nahki Wells opens his account for the Robins and opens the scoring against Derby!
Watch all of tonight's Championship action live on Sky Sports: https://t.co/div0jmGDf3 pic.twitter.com/yiz5YNluNr
This may mean Leeds switch to the 3-3-1-3, but now that Kalvin Phillips has returned to the side that is much easier to do. Leeds will have the same players either way.
In Niclas Eliasson they have one of the more creative wingers in the league with 12 assists and Jamie Paterson has showed good form since returning from a loan at Derby County. With Callum O’Dowda on the bench as well they are well stocked out wide. The left-back Jay Dasilva is also good so Helder Costa will have to be diligent tracking him back if Bristol City get on the ball.
Leeds (4-1-4-1 but may switch early): Casilla; Ayling, White, Cooper, Dallas; Phillips; Costa, Hernandez, Klich, Harrison; Bamford
Bristol City (4-4-2): Bentley; Hunt, Williams, Benkovic, Dasilva; Eliasson, Henriksen, Smith, Paterson, Diedhou, Wells
Leeds much improved performance against Brentford has helped but I have not yet recovered my confidence. Adding to that my complete lack of confidence in Kiko Casilla and a Bristol City front two that I think will create at least a couple of chances against him I am stuck being negative and predicting a 1-1 draw. Hopefully, the real Leeds shows up and we get the three points.
What do you think the result will be? Let us know in the comments below or on Twitter @ThruItAllLUFC.