Friday, 13 January 2017

Leeds United vs Derby County Live Stream Championship Match Preview & Prediction 2017

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LEEDS UNITED will look to increase the gap on promotion rivals Derby County when the two go head-to-head in the Championship at Elland Road on Friday night. As ever, we’ve asked our regular panel of Whites fans to give us their pre-match thoughts and their predcitions. See if you agree below

Leeds centre-half Liam Cooper is hoping to be fit and avert a potential defensive crisis for his side's home game against Derby.

Cooper was forced out of Monday night's FA Cup win at Cambridge with a knee problem and if he fails to make it head coach Garry Monk will be without two centre-backs as Pontus Jansson is suspended.

Jansson received his 10th booking of the season at Cambridge and starts a two-game ban so Monk could be forced to switch right-back Luke Ayling into central defence to partner Kyle Bartley.

Chris Wood, Liam Bridcutt and Pablo Hernandez are among those expected to return to the starting line-up, but left-back Charlie Taylor remains sidelined due to an Achilles injury.

Will Hughes is a doubt for Derby but new signing David Nugent should be in the squad.

Midfielder Hughes has been banned for the last two matches but is now unlikely to be risked at Elland Road as he nurses a knee injury.

Striker Nugent arrived at the club this week from Middlesbrough and is set to be involved, but Jacob Butterfield remains suspended.

Right-back Cyrus Christie is expected to return to training at the start of next week after over two months out with a broken bone in his right foot. Chris Baird has impressed in Christie's absence and will be involved against Leeds.

Reason For Leeds vs Derby Betting Tips
This is a really big game in the race for the play-off places. The longer the season goes on, the more you are convinced that Gary Monk’s Leeds are the real deal and they look like very strong top six contenders now. Derby meanwhile are the side outside of the top six that looks most likely to gatecrash it, so this promises to be a good contest and it’s likely to be a tight game between two sides that are strong at the back.

Leeds are the slight favourites and when you look at their recent home form, it’s not hard to see why. They’ve won 8 of their last 10 in the Championship at Elland Road, with only Newcastle winning at the ground during that period. The defence has very much been the foundation for their success at home. Leeds have conceded only 0.69 goals per game at Elland Road this term. They’ve kept clean sheets in an impressive 46% of their home games and are bidding for their 5th consecutive home win to nil here.

Derby though will provide them with one of their sternest tests. The Rams have kept clean sheets in a massive 56% of their Championship games this season, conceding just 0.72 goals per game on average. Only leaders Brighton have a better defensive record than Derby and in a tough game like this, they are likely to set their stall out to be tough to break down, particularly after an uncharacteristic performance as they sank to a 3-0 defeat at Norwich last time out in the league. They responded well to that though by dumping top flight West Brom out of the FA Cup at the Hawthorns last weekend, so it was probably little more than a blip.

The bookies are having a hard time picking a favourite for this match and it could be a cagey affair, at least in the opening stages. There was only one goal when they met in the East Midlands earlier in the season and both teams have scored in only 40% of Leeds games and just 20% of Derby matches in the Championship this term. Given that, there looks to be value in backing Both Teams to Score – NO at 8/11.

Head To Head
The last 6 meetings have been evenly contested with 2 wins each and 2 draws. Derby won 1-0 when the sides met in the East Midlands earlier in the season.

Leeds vs Derby Stats
Leeds have won 46% of their home games this season to nil, including all of the last 4. Derby's Championship matches this term average a league low 1.68 goals per game. Only 2nd bottom Wigan have scored fewer goals than the Rams, who average just 0.96 per game.

Leeds Team News
Liam Cooper picked up a knock on Monday in the FA Cup but Leeds are hopeful he will be fit. They could use him given fellow centre-back Pontus Jansson starts a 2 game ban and left-back Charlie Taylor is still out with an achilles problem.

Derby Team News
Will Hughes returns from a 2 game ban but Derby have numerous absentees. Fellow midfielder Jacob Butterfield is suspended while there are big problems at left-back with Marcus Olsson, Craig Forsyth and Max Lowe all injured and Ikechi Anya, who has filled in there, rated doutbful. George Thorne, Cyrus Christie and James Wilson are all still out.

Match facts

Since a run of four consecutive league defeats at Elland Road against Derby between 2006 and 2013, the Whites haven't lost against the Rams in their last three (W1 D2).
Derby won 1-0 against Leeds in October, last doing the double over them in the Championship in 2012/13.
Chris Wood has scored the first goal of the game on seven occasions in the league this season - more than any other player in the Championship.
Derby goalkeeper Scott Carson - who made his professional debut for Leeds - has kept more clean sheets than any other Championship goalkeeper this season (14).
Leeds have already equalled their tally of league wins for the whole of the 2015/16 season (14) in just 25 games this season.

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