Home Sport Leeds United fancied to roll past Middlesbrough this weekend

Leeds United fancied to roll past Middlesbrough this weekend

Leeds United host Middlesbrough on Friday in what promises to be a superb advertisement for the Championship.

The two sides are locked together on 13 points at the top of the table after five games and both have looked genuine contenders for promotion up to this point.

Liam Cooper could return to the Leeds squad after his hamstring injury, but midfielder Adam Forshaw remains on the sidelines. Middlesbrough striker Rudy Gestede is still out injured for Boro.

New Leeds boss Marcelo Bielsa has been a breath of fresh air at Elland Road, introducing a style of play that has immediately endeared him to the club’s fans.

Tuesday’s Carabao Cup defeat against Preston North End was the club’s first reverse this season, but Bielsa did make numerous changes to his starting XI.

Leeds are the league’s top scorers so far and they will be eager to make it three Championship wins from three on home soil this Friday.

The double figure odds offered at the start of the season for Leeds to win the title could look one of the best betting offers of 2018 if they maintain their form over the coming weeks.

While United have drawn plenty of praise for their early season performances, Middlesbrough have gone somewhat under the radar.

They conceded twice at Millwall on the opening day of the season, but four clean sheets since then bear all the hallmarks of manager Tony Pulis’ organisational skills.

Pulis’ side are unbeaten in all seven of their competitive matches this season and barring the game at The Den their defensive strength has been clear to see.

Leeds defeated Boro 2-1 in the corresponding fixture last season, but Patrick Bamford’s hat-trick proved to be the difference when the two sides met at the Riverside Stadium later in the campaign.

Bamford is yet to score for Leeds since his summer switch to Elland Road, but he will hope to be handed the opportunity to figure against his former side this weekend.

Leeds have won four of their last five home league matches against Middlesbrough, drawing the other.

Pablo Hernandez could be worth watching in the goalscorer markets, with last week’s srtike at Norwich City taking him to six goals and seven assists for the club during 2018.

Leeds have made their best ever start to a second-tier season, winning 13 points from a possible 15, and while the visitors will undoubtedly provide a tough test, Bielsa’s boys are fancied to come through it with flying colours.

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