On Saturday, Leeds kicked the season off with a 1-1 draw at home to Burnley, the result and performance where both impressive and should give fans confidence that Leeds will at least be able to get themselves into the top half this season, maybe a little higher even, you never know with the championship. Chris Wood made his competitive debut and whilst is link up play seems good I wasn’t that impressed. I will give him at least ten games until I make a proper judgement on whether he is a good or bad signing. On the other hand it was the best game I have seen Mirco Antenucci play for Leeds, his goal was superb and he could have had a second. What also pleased me was that he proved that he can link up well with the midfield.
I have mentioned before that I would like to see a different team to the one we saw against Burnley, mainly for fitness reasons, however, also to give other players a chance to push for the first team for our league games. The likes of Silvestri, Byram, Bamba, Bellusci, Antenucci, Cook and Mowatt. I would like to see rested as in my opinion we pretty much know already what all of these players will bring to the team. Luke Murphy, I would also like to see rested as he played Monday night for the under 21’s and I am hoping he will be able to play against Reading. Chris Wood and Stuart Dallas, I would like to see get some game time, however, I don’t really want them to start the game, as it may affect their fitness for Reading and Bristol City.
The team I would pick (4-3-3): Turnbull, Berardi, Wooton, Cooper, Taylor, Adeyemi, Phillips, Sloth, Erwin, Walters, Doukara.
Most popular team (According to forum): Turnbull, Berardi, Wooton, Bamba, Taylor, Adeyemi, Cook, Mowatt, Byram, Antenucci, Wood/Erwin.
My prediction: Doncaster, are a good team with experienced players such as: Chaplow, Wellens, Coppinger, Butler, Jones and Tyson. I think it will be a good game and I think we will just about get the win I am going for a 2-1 win for Leeds. It will not be easy, however, I still have dreadful memories of the Bradford game from just under a year ago. Of course, the result I think will depend on what sides both teams put out. At this moment in time I hope we will have learned from that Bradford game last season and will be able to get the win.
Reading are a team who I think will improve this season but I still don’t think they are good enough to reach the play offs this season. The strengths of the team are: the team has plenty of players with championship experience, they have a good mix of experience and less experienced players and I think they will be desperate to improve on their home form from last season.
The team I want to see us play and also think we will play against Reading is 4-3-3: Silvestri, Berardi, Bellusci, Bamba, Taylor, Cook, Murphy (if fit enough to start if not Adeyemi),Mowatt, Byram,Wood and Dallas. If any players play particularly well against Doncaster, then I would also like to see them play on Sunday as well, I suspect Antenucci is also very close to the starting 11 as well.
My prediction: I have to be honest but at this stage, I don’t see Leeds winning the game. I predict it will be a 1-1 draw, which is a good result for us. I think we have enough to get a draw from the game at the moment. If we put on a good show verses Doncaster then yes we could win the game, if we lose to Doncaster, then maybe it could be a first league defeat of the season.
Question for readers: Does Mirco Antenucci deserve to start against Reading on Sunday?
I think we will stick with 4-3-3, I think Chris Wood will be dropped to the bench.
The team I would pick (very similar to my predicted team) 4-3-3: Silvestri, Berardi, Bellusci, Bamba, Taylor, Adeyemi, Murphy, Mowatt, Byram (on the right), Wood (through the middle), Antenucci (on the left hand side so he can cut in on his right foot.)