LEICESTER, fresh from winning their first Premier League match of the year, host Leeds this weekend, with the visitors looking to stop their worrying slide down the table.
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Leicester vs Leeds preview
Both sides go into this game in disappointing league positions. Leicester, who for so long punched above their weight, currently sit in 12th place in the Premier League, while Leeds’ horrendous recent form has seen them dragged down the table and into the relegation dogfight.
However, there has been something to celebrate recently for Leicester fans, as their team finally won a league match, beating Burnley on Tuesday. Amazingly, this was their first league win of the year. They’ll be boosted by the returns of Jamie Vardy and James Maddison, both key players who can lift the side.
Leeds have been abysmal of late, which led to Marcelo Bielsa exiting the club. New manager Jesse Marsch is now tasked with addressing their slide down the table. He’ll be particularly keen to do something about Leeds’ awful defence, which has let in 20 goals in the last five games.
Should Leicester manage to take three points, they could climb back into the top half of the table, depending on results elsewhere. Three points for Leeds would be hugely welcome, and could see them move five points clear of the relegation zone.
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Leicester vs Leeds team news
Leicester team news
Leicester have several injuries to contend with. Jonny Evans, Timothy Castagne, James Justin and Ryan Bertrand are all definitely out of the fixture, while Ricardo Pereira has a hamstring problem and faces a late fitness test. Wesley Fofana is also doubtful to start the game.
It could be the case that Marc Albrighton is forced to start in the right back position, which will leave room in the team for Ademola Lookman.
It’s also possible that Jamie Vardy and James Maddison will both come back into the starting XI for the visit of Leeds. Vardy was particularly effective when coming off the bench in midweek, and his return will be a huge boost for the Foxes. Leeds manager Marsch has already identified Vardy as a threat, saying his involvement will make his first match “very difficult.”
In defence, Daniel Amartey should keep his place in the starting line-up, alongside Caglar Soyuncu.
Leicester predicted line-up
Schmeichel; Albrighton, Amartey, Soyuncu, Thomas; Tielemans, Ndidi; Lookman, Maddison, Barnes; Vardy
Leeds team news
New Leeds manager Jesse Marsch will have to take control of his first match with several players ruled out with injury. Kalvin Phillips, Liam Cooper and Leo Hjelde are all going to be missing, while it’s possible that Diego Llorente will also miss the match with injury.
Marsch has also confirmed that Patrick Bamford won’t be named in the squad to travel to Leicester. The striker is back in training after a lengthy lay-off, but is not yet ready to play in a competitive match.
Many will be interested to see how Marsch sets up his side for his first match. There is speculation he’ll set the team up with a back three, although this is likely dependent on whether Llorente manages to get over his injury in time. All eyes will be on the defence, as Marsch attempts to plug holes in a defence that has been exceptionally ineffective over recent weeks.
Leeds predicted lineup
Meslier; Ayling, Koch, Llorente; Dallas, Forshaw, Klich, Firpo; Raphinha, James, Harrison
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