Leeds United v Cardiff City: YEP Jury predictions

Neil Warnock.
Neil Warnock.
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Our YEP Jury have their say on Leeds United’s home clash with Cardiff City

STEPHEN CLARK

Pablo Hernandez.

Pablo Hernandez.

The defeat to Huddersfield Town has shaken the belief for some of the more pessimistic members of the Leeds United fanbase, but this week offers a real opportunity to reignite the belief with two games at Elland Road which are extremely winnable.

The first of those takes place tomorrow as the Whites take on Cardiff City.

The win in South Wales back at the start of the season was a real boost to the team’s confidence and can be seen as possibly the turning point of the season.

The result saw Cardiff dispense with Paul Trollope as manager and saw them bring in a familiar face for yet another “last opportunity”.

Cardiff City's Sol Bamba.

Cardiff City's Sol Bamba.

Neil Warnock has had more comebacks than Frank Sinatra, and is, as I have discussed previously, in my opinion, a catalyst for Leeds United’s stagnation in recent times.

He hasn’t got many of his old cohorts with him this time and he hasn’t really pulled up any trees with the Welsh club.

They appear to be paying the price for chasing the Premier League dream and both the owner, Vincent Tan, and the majority of their supporters appear to have given up the ghost, with the stadium practically empty for home games.

Whilst Warnock will be given the reception he deserves, another returning old boy may well be greeted more sympathetically. Sol Bamba made a good impression in his stay at Elland Road, in particular when speaking out about how the club was run.

It was a desire for first-team football that saw him leave, and although we are a little thin at centre-back, there is little doubt that he would struggle to find a place in front of Kyle Bartley and Pontus Jansson.

The Leeds squad is at pretty much full strength going into this week, and it will be interesting to see if Garry Monk is tempted to change the formula that has worked so well in recent weeks.

Whatever side he puts out this weekend, I feel it will be too strong for Cardiff.

And I predict the first in two comfortable home wins that will ease any hangovers from Huddersfield.

Prediction: Leeds United 2 Cardiff City 0.

KEITH INGHAM

Leeds are going through a stage of winning a game then losing one; nobody can really see the team that impressed so much against Derby County.

The fallout from Sutton, to me, has had an effect on performances.

In ‘Town’ tomorrow are Warnock’s Cardiff City, a team you usually expect to be up there challenging for the play-offs. This season, the battle seems to be to stay safe in the division. Like most teams they aren’t to be taken lightly or they might bite your rear!

Ex-captain Sol Bamba is in their squad so expect another tough contest.

I would like Garry Monk to try and pick an XI and stick with it, barring injuries or suspensions; too many changes may be the cause of the inconsistency. Pablo Hernandez can frustrate – brilliant in some games and totally absent in others.

I worry too that both Kyle Bartley and Pontus Jansson are one booking away from suspension and the failure to add to the centre of defence in the transfer window may become a major problem.

Two winnable games and I’d be disappointed if there aren’t six points added to our total by Tuesday. Saturday may be a tight game but an early Leeds goal should send United into the Valentine’s Day’s fixture with Bristol City in good heart.

Prediction: Leeds United 3 Cardiff City 1.

DAVID WATKINS


Our last six games have seen us alternate won, lost, won, lost, won, lost, so on that basis alone Cardiff should be a home banker! Joking aside though, it is vital we get back to winning ways against a side languishing 17th in the table at a time when all the top teams are putting winning streaks together. We think we are safe for at least a play-off spot but the likes of Derby and Fulham have been making their cases strongly in recent games and other than Brighton and the Toon no-one is safe.

Neil Warnock has steadied the ship at Cardiff and he’s this week been saying how his side only needs minimal cash spent on it to turn it into a promotion capable side next season. Since the turn of the year Cardiff have won four and lost four but their defeats were all against top ten sides – Fulham, Reading, Brighton and Norwich – and all were by the odd goal. This will be no easy game and no doubt Sol Bamba will have the game of his life against us!

Prediction: Leeds United 1 Cardiff City 0.

GARY NEWBOULD

After late derby disappointment, United return to LS11 for a rare Saturday 3pm appointment when they host Cardiff City.

The Whites need to stay well clear of any nonsense surrounding the return of former employees and simply focus on the one simple objective, which is getting a much-needed three points to get their promotion aspirations firmly back on track.

Despite last week’s defeat I’d expect a pretty similar starting line up with the possible earlier introductions of home debutants Pedraza and Barrow.

It’s never easy against Cardiff, but I expect a hard fought victory.

Prediction: Leeds United 2 Cardiff City 1.

MATTHEW EVANS

You know you’re having a good season when a 3pm Saturday kick-off is as rare as it has become for United.

It’ll be good to return to familiar surroundings at the familiar time.

Respite from TV coverage will also be welcome having lost all of our last three televised outings.

This should be a better environment for our new loanees to find their feet at Leeds and shouldn’t be quite as testing as our trip to Huddersfield. That said, Neil Warnock and LUFC didn’t get on before he arrived at Elland Road and it’s probably worse since he left. He’ll want to win and he’ll have his Cardiff City team well up for it.

I don’t think it’ll be enough.

Prediction: Leeds United 2 Cardiff City 0.

MIKE GILL

After Saturday’s tough and ultimately disappointing encounter with Huddersfield, Leeds look to put themselves back on track with the visit of Cardiff.

Whilst the Huddersfield game ended in chaos, you have to hope that Neil Warnock will be digging into his anthology of plausible excuses at the end of this match. Anything less would be unacceptable. Another big crowd is expected at Elland Road, lots of noise is required from everybody including the more fickle followers.

Prediction: Leeds United 2 Cardiff City 0.

HEAD TO HEAD: Neil Warnock and Thomas Christiansen.

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