Leeds United v Burnley: Key battle, Clarets key man and YEP prediction

Ahead of Sunday's showdown between Leeds United and Burnley, the YEP's Lee Sobot looks at the key elements of the contest at Elland Road.

By Lee Sobot
Friday, 31st December 2021, 5:27 pm

Date: Sunday

Time: 2pm

Venue: Elland Road

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KEY THREAT: Burnley's former Leeds United striker Chris Wood. Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images.

Odds (best available): Leeds win – 11-10; Draw – 13-5; Burnley win – 29-10

Last time the teams met at Elland Road: Saturday, December 27, 2020; Premier League: Leeds United 1 (Bamford pen 5), Burnley 0.

Key battle: Raphinha v Charlie Taylor

Leeds have netted 18 goals from their 18 Premier League games so far this season and Brazilian star Raphinha has been responsible for bagging eight of them. The winger has continually caused all sorts of problems down the right flank and former Whites defender Charlie Taylor will need to keep the 25-year-old quiet from left back although Taylor himself offers a threat going forward, particularly with his crosses. All eyes on that side of the pitch.

Clarets key man: Chris Wood

Ivory Coast international Maxwel Cornet is Burnley's top scorer this season having netted five of the Clarets' 15 league goals. However, the former Lyon player has recently been out with a thigh injury followed by coronavirus and missed Thursday's 3-1 loss at Manchester United in which two former Whites players were paired upfront in Aaron Lennon and Chris Wood . Lennon netted and had a fine game but £15m signing Wood is Burnley's big target man and keeping him in check, particularly in aerial battles, is likely to be key.

Lee Sobot's verdict: 2-1 Leeds

United's first game for two weeks following a small outbreak of coronavirus in the Whites camp and one look at the Premier League table clearly highlights the huge magnitude of this fixture, 16th-placed Leeds five points ahead of third-bottom Burnley but having played two games more. Both sides have key absentees to deal with but Leeds ought to have enough to secure what would be a hugely important victory in leading to more comfortable viewing of the top-flight table. That said, Burnley will be physical, tough and hard to break down and a tense affair would be no surprise. Perhaps Leeds to win by a single goal with Raphinha adding to his tally. Let's say 2-1 Leeds.

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Thank you Laura Collins