Down the years, especially back in the sixties and early seventies. Leeds and Arsenal went together like cod and chips, cups won, titles won and lost by two of the giants of English football at that time.
Move on to the present day and both teams have moved on, Arsenal no longer play at Highbury but are an established force in the Premier League and Leeds have travelled to Yeovil and other Division One teams before finally, after 16 years of blood sweat and tears of some of it’s players but all of it’s faithful fans they finally get to play Arsenal at Elland Road in the top league. The first time since 2004.
The only time Leeds played them in the time away from the Premier League was in the FA Cup, although Leeds had decent results against their lofty opponents it was usually Arsenal that won the replay. Last season United had the best of the first half of their tie at The Emirates before the hosts won the game with a second half goal from Nelson
Arsenal are managed by Mikel Arteta a discipline of Arsene Wenger, the former Gunners midfielder took over the team last season and won the FA Cup. They will be without a number of players due to COVID and injuries but still will come to Leeds 11 with a bevy of good, international players.
Leeds haven’t been having the best of times in their last two games, losing both 4-1 but hopefully the return of Kalvin Phillips and record signing Rodrigo in midfield may steady the ship. Unfortunately Diego Llorente, Jamie Shackleton and Pablo Hernandez are out injured. Bielsa is yet to pick from his squad without at least one being out injured this season.
The Gunners like to play a 3-4-3 system so whoever gets the nod in midfield for Leeds will be given space to attack them down the flanks and giving Patrick Bamford and Rodrigo plenty of opportunities to get the goals needed to beat Arsenal.
Heart definitely says a Leeds win, head says a draw wouldn’t be the worse result United could take to end their two game losing run. Leeds 2-1.
By Keith Ingham