Our Focus turns to Elland Road and a must-win for Fulham if our chances of automatic promotion are to realistically continue…
Head to Head
- Fulham Wins – 19
- Draws – 15
- Leeds Wins – 22
- Goals Scored – 64
- Goals For – 79
- Biggest Wins – Leeds 6-1 Fulham (1955/56), Fulham 5-0 Leeds (1959/60), Fulham 0-5 Leeds (1967/68)
Last 5 Games
- Fulham 2-1 Leeds
- Fulham 2-0 Leeds
- Leeds 0-0 Fulham
- Fulham 1-1 Leeds
- Leeds 1-1 Fulham
Last Time Out
Fulham 2-1 Leeds Utd
Fulham moved up to third in the table and 9 points behind Leeds thanks to this victory. It was a win which defied the form table, stopping a 3 match losing streak for Parker’s side, whilst also ending an 11 match unbeaten run for the league leaders.
Mitrović opened the scoring early on from the spot after Bobby Reid was brought down in the box by Ben White. Bielsa’s team came out stronger in the second half and equalised with a tap in from Patrick Bamford before Josh Onomah, the unlikeliest of match winners popped up to score his first goal for the club and restore some faith in the crowd.
Players in Common
Micky Adams, Rod Belfitt, Michael Brown, Danny Cadamarteri, Allan Clarke, Olivier Dacourt, David Healy, Geoff Horsfield, Jim Langley, Eddie Lewis, Andy Lonergan, Ross McCormack, Terry Phelan, Matt Smith, Maik Taylor & Tony Warner.
Fulham: Alfie Mawson (knee)
Leeds Utd: Kiko Casilla (Suspended), Adam Forshaw (Hip), Barry Douglas (Calf Strain, Doubt)
Fulham View: Tristan Poturicic
Leeds Utd 3-1 Fulham
Leeds View: LS11 – Leeds United Fan Hub
Leeds Utd 1-0 Fulham
Former Player: Robert Wilson
Leeds Utd 0-1 Fulham
Battle to Watch
Aleksandar Mitrovic vs Ben White
Leeds have the best defence in the Championship having conceded just 32 goals in 38 games and summer loan signing Ben White has been a big part of that. Coming in from Brighton, The centre back has started every Championship game for Leeds forming a very strong partnership with club captain Liam Cooper, as well as filling in for Kalvin Philips as a holding midfielder when he has been absent. White has developed into a brilliant ball-playing defender for Leeds, but I think that Mitrovic might target him in our game on Saturday. Mitro is a much bigger player in terms of his height and build so I think he will use that to his advantage and win this key battle.
Sam’s View (@SamCole2468)
The Championship is back, and Fulham have had a poor start; imagine my shock… The game we played against Brentford was painful to watch with very little creativity or cutting edge. The only positive to take out of the display was Harrison Reed’s performance in midfield, so it was no surprise that we capitulated when he came off. But we have to move on and our game against Leeds United is one of the most important of our season. If we can win this fixture then automatic promotion is still on the cards, if we lose or even draw, then ‘Playoffs here we come’. Leeds come into this fixture off the back of a 2-0 defeat to Cardiff in which they lacked conviction in the final third. Sound familiar? Clearly both sides are rusty after such a long layoff and this game is set out to be a very cagey affair with both sides having so much riding on it.
Despite our poor performance against Brentford, I don’t think a huge amount of change is needed to our team selection. I would only make two changes and they are in defence and on the wing. The first change is at left-back and despite delivering some dangerous crosses into the box, Joe Bryan’s defensive performance against Brentford was woeful. If he makes those mistakes against Leeds, he would be punished which is why I controversially think that Maxime Le Marchant should be given a chance at left-back. I know he doesn’t offer as much going forward but defensively he is more secure, and it would be interesting to see him get more game time.
The second change I would make is another controversial pick and that is bringing Sylvester Jasper in for Anthony Knockaert. I think it is fair to say that Knockaert has not lived up to expectations this year and his performance against Brentford wasn’t good enough to warrant staying in the team. The obvious replacement is Cavaleiro but that is why I don’t think he should start. Fulham this season have been too predictable in the way they line up and the way they attack. Whenever we get into the final third, we rarely create good chances because the defenders are intelligent enough to read what we are doing. Jasper presents a complete unknown and could give us something different going forward. Admittedly, it is a risk and is very unlikely to happen, but I think it is a risk that would pay off.
Fulham should keep their 4-2-3-1 formation with Decordova-Reid sitting behind Mitro, with Kebano on the left and Jasper on the right. I think that due to the magnitude of this game it will stay low scoring with both teams trying to balance risk for reward. I’m going for a 0-0 draw.