Het Championship is resumed on Friday evening with the meeting between Derby County and Leeds United. A beautiful poster that might be finished in the Premier League in a year’s time. Because both teams are on the left or the right on their way to England’s football walhalla. Derby County is currently number six and Leeds United is still the leader. Which team is a favorite? A look ahead!
Leeds United was thrown out of the FA Cup last Sunday. On Loftus Road it was no match for Queens Park Rangers. Marcelo Bielsa had granted some basic players such as Kemar Roofe, Pablo Hernandez, Barry Douglas, Mateusz Klich and Kalvin Phillips rest. This obviously did not benefit the automatisms in the game. Leeds United was weak in the passing and in the front was also Jack Hussein not in power to danger. The outsiders Alioski and Clarke did not have their day, and although Leeds United frequently had the ball, QPR’s victory was justified because it dealt better with the opportunities that were created.
For Leeds, after the home defeat against Hull City (0-2) and defeat against Nottingham Forest (4-2), it was the third defeat in a row. How crazy it might sound, but this defeat was to be expected. To bring a second garnish within the lines was of course very unwise from Leeds United manager Marcelo Bielsa. He wanted to see some players like Harrison, Davis, Halme, Roberts at work. But these players showed that they are mainly substitutes and not basic players. He will never say it out loud but deep down the Argentinian is not sorry that his team was eliminated last Sunday. He and his team will be able to focus even more on the title in the Championship. So maybe the defeat was lucky in an accident.
Derby County received last weekend at Pride Park as part of the FA Cup Southampton. Nathan Redmond quickly put the visitors ahead after well prepared work by Shane Long. When Nathan Redmond scored again three minutes after the break, the game looked decided. However, the home team fought back into the game and via goals from Jack Marriott and Tom Lawrence it was 2-2 after an hour of play. In the remainder of the game, there was no more scoring, so both teams will repeat at Southampton later this year for a spot in the fourth round of the FA Cup.
Manager Frank Lampard with his reaction afterwards: ‘We have shown too little during the first half. Our reaction after the 0-2 was great. I am a satisfied manager. That we have enforced a replay is justified. We have a young selection and for them it is a great opportunity to play a match against a Premier League team again. Today I found Duane Holmes playing strongly as an attacker. Tom Lawrence has all the qualities to play in the top. I see a player who has a good work ethic and he gives everything to succeed as a footballer. I was happy for him that he took care of the equalizer.
PREDICTION: Leeds to win @ 1.85