Leeds United hope to put further distance between themselves and the bottom three as Newcastle visit Yorkshire on Saturday

Leeds United go in search of a third straight Premier League win on Saturday afternoon, as struggling Newcastle United head to Elland Road.

The Whites have turned something of a corner in recent weeks, bouncing back from a 7-0 hammering by Manchester City and a 4-1 defeat to Arsenal to beat Burnley and West Ham in their last two games.

Those results have opened up a nine-point gap between Marcelo Bielsa’s side and the bottom three, an area of the table Newcastle have been toiling to escape for a matter of months.

They could have done it last weekend, but a late header from Joao Mario denied them what would have been just their second win of the season, and kept Watford above the Magpies in the battle against the drop.

On the back of that result, Newcastle have reportedly been busy in the transfer market once again, but nothing is expected to be completed in time for the trip to Yorkshire.

Sevilla defender Diego Carlos, Manchester United midfielder Jesse Lingard and Barcelona winger Ousmane Dembele are all linked with moves to the North East daily, but none of the trio’s rumoured transfers have materialised yet.

That means it will be largely the same squad that played well in spells against Watford that travel to Leeds, with Chris Wood set to lead the line against his former club. Defender Federico Fernandez is back in training but not expected to be fit enough to play after injury, but Isaac Hayden and Callum Wilson are both out. Ciaran Clark’s availability is unknown, but Javier Manquillo could return to the squad after serving a one-match ban for picking up five yellow cards.

As for Leeds, their injury worries show little sign of easing. Eight first-team players are missing for the visit of Newcastle, but there is some good news in the form of Tyler Roberts and Joe Gelhardt being fit enough to play, and Diego Llorente returning from suspension.

The Spaniard’s return could mean Robin Koch moves into midfield in place of the injured Kalvin Phillips, who joins Junior Firpo, Adam Forshaw, Liam Cooper, Jamie Shackleton, Charlie Cresswell and Sam Greenwood on the sidelines.

There was hope that Patrick Bamford would be back from a hamstring injury for this game, but Bielsa confirmed that the striker has picked up a foot injury during his rehabilitation, and will miss out. The last time Bamford completed 90 minutes was against Newcastle at St James’ Park earlier this season, with the former Chelsea man missing 14 of the 15 games since.

The outcome of that game was a 1-1 draw, with both sides finding the net through their electric wingers – Raphinha and Allan Saint-Maximin. If that result is repeated on Saturday, Leeds will stay in 15th place, while Newcastle know a win would take them above at least one of Watford and Norwich, who meet on Friday night.

Leeds United take on Newcastle United on Saturday, January 22nd. Kick-off is at 3pm.

ScoopDragon Football News Network

About the author

Marley Anderson

Marley Anderson

Head of Social Media at Sport Social
Social media for Sport Social. The man behind the memes. Regular guest on Football Social Daily, usually bemoaning Steve Bruce and his beloved back five system. Cumbrian born, Manchester drawn.
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