Leeds

Crawley stun Leeds in shock of the round in FA Cup

League two side Crawley, produced one of the biggest shocks in recent FA Cup history, with an emphatic 3-0 against Leeds.

The Lillywhites who are in mid-table in the Premier League, were fielding a weaker side. Having said that, the Yorkshire side did include Rodrigo, Kalvin Phillips and Ezgjan Alioski in their side.

So they did have some of their first team squad at their disposal. What would have been alarming for the visitors, is that the League Two underdogs Crawley could have scored even more.

There was no such look for Morecambe, the Lancashire side were well beaten by Premier League side Chelsea 4-0.

Goals from Tino Werner (His first since November), amongst others helped The Blues through in this one.

Former winners Manchester City capped off a good week, with a convincing 3-0 win over Birmingham.

City’s rivals Tottenham, who were facing Non-League Marine, ended up winning 5-0 in a match that could have been difficult for Spurs.

Marine, did well to get this far and were rewarded with a glamour tie with North London side Tottenham.

In a show of respect by Spurs boss Jose Mourinho, the Portuguese boss did field a starting line up that has 402 international caps between them.

The beauty of the cup, is still alive and going going strong. We will bring you the FA Cup fourth and fifth round draw, which takes place on Monday 19:00.

Unpopular opinion; why Leeds will get relegated

Love them, or loathe them, Leeds United are a team that divides opinion.

Being known as Dirty, dirty Leeds, or their association with being a team with a bad image in terms of how their fans behave, one thing is for sure is that ever since veteran Argentine manager Marcelo Bielsa wound up in West Yorkshire, it’s left the world of football stunned.

Spells with Atletico Bilbao was a success, where the Basque side stunned Sir Alex’s Manchester United in the Europa League and would go all the way to the final that year.

There would also be success, with Chile’s national team. The high intensity and high pressing made Bielsa’s Chile team a nightmare to deal with.

A round of 16 defeat to South American rivals Brazil in the world cup, wasn’t the end they would have wanted in the 2014 World Cup, but the fact that Chile qualified for the tournament after being absent in the last two tournaments before softened the blow.

Spells with Lazio and Lille were threatening to unravel one of the legends of the game’s managerial legacy.

So when Leeds United announced in 2018 that they have managed to secure the services of former Newell Old Boys, Argentina, Atletico Bilbao manager Marcelo Bielsa, eyebrows were raised and there was shock.

Notorious for his unusual seating position on the touchline, (something not too dissimilar from someone from the Asian Subcontinent going to the gents/ladies).

That point aside, his teams make you sit up and take notice. Marcelo Bielsa was a manager who had a damaged reputation, which was in need of repair and Leeds United were in need of a fresh start too.

A Fast, attacking, high energy and high press game, now moved to English shores and in the Yorkshire lanes . Kalvin Phillips has been seen as the Yorkshire version of Andrea Pirlo, partly due to the Bielsa affect .

The Italian legend Pirlo, with his luscious hair and a beard to match, ensured he wasn’t only easy on the eye off the pitch (being lady crush and man-crush material)

Former Juventus midfielder Pirlo was also easy on the eye on the pitch with how he effortlessly played the game. Where some players, looked like they embarked in a battle royal, he looked like he could has played in his suit and tie.

Back to the topic of Leeds, and after the Elland Road side came so close yet so far, in the 2018-2019 season, the 2019-2020 season was a successful one, all be it in unusual circumstances.

Last season’s Championship winners Leeds, were a neutral fan’s favourite, due to their swashbuckling approach.

With that in mind, many pundits and fans alike (yeah I was one), had Leeds United down as one of the sides who will take the Premier League by storm.

After an initial good start where the Lillywhites were up to third, battering’s against Crystal Palace and Leicester (both 4-1) and Manchester United (6-2) are just some examples of the point I am going to make.

Now, it’s brilliant when you’re not getting counter-attacked, but this is very Naïve from Leeds.

Yes, their attacking approach is highly commendable and admired, but someone needs to tell Leeds, this isn’t under 10’s. I am a football purist and love football to be played in the beautiful way, but I am telling a cautionary tale.

Bournemouth and Wigan are two prime examples of teams who face the severest consequence of naïve football, relegation. Leeds United fans after waiting for 16 years for Premier League football, will surely not want that.

Bolton Vs Leeds Match Report

Eidur Gudjonsen grabbed a crucial equaliser to keep Bolton's resurgence under Neil Lennon going.

Eidur Gudjonsen grabbed a crucial equaliser to keep Bolton’s resurgence under Neil Lennon going.

Former Chelsea striker Eidur Gudjohnsen’s first goal since since rejoin Bolton allowed the Trotters to gain a crucial point from this one.

Bolton who endured a very difficult start to the season which saw them in the bottom three, have been a different proposition for opposing teams under Neil Lennon as Bolton gradually move up the table. At the start of the season the Lancashire looked like they ‘lacked fight’ but that’s all changed since the arrival of Neil Lennon who has only suffered a single defeat in 10 games as Bolton manager.

The former Celtic boss started with veteran duo Emile Heskey and Eidur upfront for this game, Andy Lonnergen started in goal in place of usual number one Adam Bogdan.

Visitors Leeds who have endured all sorts of turmoil this year off the pitch and on the pitch with three managers this season, find themselves flirting with relegation.

Former Bradford player and current Leeds boss Neil Redfearn decided to drop Mirko Antenucci and Tomasso Bianchi to the bench in aim to freshen things up. Sean Morrison made his third league start for Leeds since joining from Millwall.

It was the visitors Leeds who drew first blood in this one. Leeds’ Sam Byram managed to draw a foul from home keeper Andy Lonnergen in the penalty area, which gave the referee no choice but to point to the spot. Leeds skipper Rodolph Austin stepped up and scored to give the Yorkshire side the lead.

The home side were lucky not to be 2-0 down, Steve Morrison who impressed as a lone striker, drew a fine save from home keeper Andy Lonnergen. That chance seemed to wake up the home side – and Bolton were starting to get into the game – and it was Leeds this time who were indebted to their goalkeeper, Marco Silvestri doing well to keep out Luke Murphy’s effort.

Bolton did eventually equalise through a penalty of their own, Luke Murphy fouled Darren Pratley in the box, again leaving the referee no choice but to point to the spot for the second time in the game. Upstepped Gudjohnsen who confidently placed his penalty into the top left corner of Silvestri’s goal.

In an evenly fought contest Eidur Gudjohnsen did have a chance to grab his and Bolton’s second – but the former Icelandic International saw his fantastically blocked by Leeds defender Liam Cooper. So a point it finished then, which isn’t the best result for either side – but Bolton would be the slightly happier.

As for Leeds they are only two points above the drop zone. Neil Redfearn will need to turn things around quickly otherwise he could be out of a job soon.