With just nine games left in the season, the race for promotion is on. Today, Yorkshire teams Leeds United and Sheffield United will meet and battle over a significant three points.
On the one hand, if Leeds win, they’ll move five points clear of third – whereas for Sheffield, victory would mean moving into the automatic promotion spots.
Leeds are on an hot streak this season and boast a, winning three for three and scoring eight whilst conceding none. Sheffield on the other hand have kept a clean sheet for their last six games – showing a strong forward and exceptional defensive strength.
It’s a hard one to call – but with the home edge and the passion of the fans – Leeds may have a slight edge.
In this article, we’re taking a look at the current odds from a number of different sources, and seeing what the experts are predicting from todays clash.
Let us know your own predictions in the comments, too.
What Do We Know?
- Leeds United haven’t completed a league double over Sheffield United since the 1991-92 season, when they won the top-flight title.
- Sheffield United are looking to win consecutive away league visits to Leeds for the first time since March 1961.
- Just six of the 15 goals Leeds have conceded in the Championship at Elland Road this season have been from open play.
- Sheffield United are the only Championship side to have had a larger share of possession in a game against Leeds this season, enjoying 56% in the reverse fixture; since that game, Leeds have had at least 60% possession in 15 of their 17 Championship games.
- Sheffield United striker Billy Sharp has scored three goals in four away league appearances at Elland Road – as many as he managed in 18 appearances for Leeds at Elland Road during the 2014-15 season.
- Pablo Hernandez is the first Leeds United player to register both double figures for goals (10) and assists (11) in a Championship season since Robert Snodgrass in the 2011-12 campaign (13 goals, 13 assists).
Sporting Life Prediction
Sport website Sporting Life have given their prediction of a 1-1 draw, saying “Confidence is high and Leeds will be wanting to replicate the performance against West Brom, which completely blew away the opposition. A five-point gap at this point in the season is massive, it would mean that the Blades couldn’t afford to slip-up again.
A point though will be different, things stay as they are and Leeds remain within touching distance. Wilder will have a game plan and his side will be fairly comfortable dealing with Leeds’ style of play. The 12/5 price on a draw is always worth a consideration.”
Another well respected site has given their two cents too, Leaguelane.com say “Leeds has no other go but to win the game. They are fiercely being pursued by Norwich, and the latter has a game in hand. Recent form definitely gives Leeds the advantage, especially with their home status. The team won five of their last six games and eight of the last ten at home.
Sheffield, on the other hand, is doling out good performances at their home, but cannot keep the level on the road. They had just one win in their last five road trips and was winless in nine of their last fifteen matches away from home.”
They’re tipping Leeds to win, but not giving a score prediction.
Footie Accumulators Prediction
Betting experts Footy Accumulators also predict a Leeds win, but do so cautiously, saying “Two sides gunning for promotion at the top of the Championship meet on Saturday afternoon when Leeds United host Sheffield United at Elland Road. The two teams have been floating around the top-six for virtually the entire campaign, culminating in what could well be a decisive match in the race for promotion this weekend. Leeds secured a comfortable 3-0 victory away to Reading last time out, with Sheffield United beating Brentford 2-0 at Bramall Lane in midweek.
Marcelo Bielsa’s side will be well aware of just how huge an opportunity this is for them in the race for promotion to the Premier League, with it now being just three teams battling it out for two automatic promotion places. Leeds have occupied one of the top two spots for the vast majority of the season and now have the best opportunity they’ve had to return to the Premier League since their relegation in 2004. They come into this game in excellent form, winning three on the bounce and five of their last six in the Championship, with an away defeat to QPR being the only mark on their recent record. Their form is similarly strong at Elland Road, winning each of their last 10 matches on home turf.”