Leeds United vs Manchester City Prediction
Wednesday 28th December 2022
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Where Can I Watch Leeds United vs Manchester City?
Amazon Prime Video (UK, NI, CI, IoM)
Leeds United vs Manchester City Prediction Match Overview
There is now the return of league football after players’ escapades at the World Cup. This fixture represents Leeds United’s second fixture in a difficult triple-header featuring Tottenham (4-3 defeat) and Newcastle United on New Year’s Eve. Leeds started the season in fine fettle and were sat on seven points after four games before a poor run of form saw them slide down the table towards the relegation zone. Inconsistency and defensive issues have ravaged their season, although they managed to achieve impressive victories over both Liverpool and Chelsea. Although this match is of prohibitive difficulty, Manchester City have shown in recent games that they are fallible, and if Leeds can get a positive result here they’ll go level on points with Bournemouth. Leeds United have two games in hand, but bearing in mind the strength of the opposition it doesn’t represent a big advantage over their relegation rivals.
As we’ve just touched on, Manchester City are in somewhat indifferent form by their lofty standards. While they’ve been imperious at home, notwithstanding a 2-1 home defeat to Brentford last time out, scoring 30 goals in just eight matches, their away record may be a cause for concern with Arsenal now eight points clear having played an additional match. City have scored one away goal in their last four away matches in all competitions, and their points tally in away games is a not disastrous but not altogether impressive 11 points in six matches. The Mancunians will be taking nothing for granted against a Leeds United side who recently turned over Liverpool at Anfield in a 2-1 victory. City must improve immediately and take advantage of their game in hand over Arsenal and two games in hand over Arsenal. Both sides show no signs of their impressive form coming to end, and Manchester City can’t afford to be dropping points over the Christmas/New Year period.
Leeds United vs Manchester City Team News
Injuries and Suspensions
Might Not Play: Bamford, Klich, Summerville (Leeds United); Phillips (Manchester City)
Will Not Play: Adams, Dallas, Gray, Sinisterra (Leeds United); Alvarez, Dias (Manchester City)
Leeds United (4-2-3-1): Meslier; Struijk, Koch, Cooper, Christensen; Roca, Forshaw; Harrison, Aaronson, Gnonto; Rodrigo
Manchester City (4-2-3-1): Ederson; Cancelo, Akanji, Laporte, Walker; Gundogan, Rodri; Foden, De Bruyne, Bernardo Silva; Haaland
Leeds United vs Manchester City Prediction Analysis
Attacking Versatility – City Need More of It
It goes without saying that when Manchester City have possession, the vast majority of clubs in domestic and European football funnel back in numbers and form variants of a low block. While this is a testament to their quality on the ball in general, sometimes their attacking approach has been rather one-dimensional, with the Citizens looking to play in Erling Haaland at every opportunity – often to the detriment of other options. While this has certainly worked out for Haaland on a personal level, recording 18 goals in 13 games with three assists, they looked ponderous and predictable against Aston Villa, Liverpool, Dortmund and Bournemouth in particular, with too many speculative crosses being aimed at the big man.
It would be churlish to say that this approach is without merit – when Haaland is on his game and the service is good, then Manchester City can and do score goals for fun, but it’s noticeable that some sides have managed to martial the Norwegian fairly well and it’s at this point that City must think about reverting to more subtle avenues of attack. There’s no denying Haaland’s goalscoring prowess, but City may be forced to mix up their avenues of attack to make them less predictable at times. Of course, equally, they could find Haaland with a couple of pinpoint crosses and passes and render this irrelevant. Guardiola’s signing of Haaland is uncharacteristic and represents a gamble as it’s a deviation from City’s previous patterns of play. The logic might be sound – City need goals in tight games, therefore they signed the best goalscorer in the World at the moment, but they have been dropping points and struggling to hit the back of the net away from home.
The Opportunity for Leeds to Counter
In analysing Leeds United’s recent form, it becomes apparent that generally speaking their attack functions better when they press from the front just inside their own half and look to quickly break into space. A lot of their goalscoring blanks in the Premier League have come when they have a more or less equal share of the ball. Leeds failed to score against Brighton (57% possession), Aston Villa (44%), Arsenal (47%), Leicester (53%) and Wolves (52%). Although City are an exceptionally strong team and could blow Leeds away, it’s apparent that the Yorkshiremen prefer to play mostly without the ball, work hard to close the gaps and turn the ball over to launch rapid counter-attacks.
This is where Manchester City have to be careful because we’ve seen them come undone at times when having their customary lion’s share of possession. Perhaps this issue is fresh in the memory because of Brentford’s magnificent performance at the Etihad Stadium before the break for the World Cup, in which they could not be considered to be fortunate in any way. At their best, Leeds are set up to press with aggression, they play with terrific energy and they attack with pace and precision. At their worst, they don’t move the ball quickly enough in possession and they can be forced into committing to patterns of play which don’t suit their strengths.
Beat the Bookmaker Leeds United vs Manchester City Prediction
Although Manchester City demolished their opponents by an aggregate scoreline of 11-0 in last season’s Premier League campaign, we have to take into account the fact that right now they’re not looking as dominant as they were during the early stages of their campaign and that Leeds United at their best are something of a tough match-up for them stylistically. Guardiola has said as much in his pre-game press conference, and although City, as always, could turn up and blow Leeds United away, we’re thinking this game has goals in it for both sides.
Leeds United 2-3 Manchester City
Beat the Bookmaker Leeds United vs Manchester City Prediction Prediction – Both Teams to Score Odds:
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