Is Manchester City loss Leeds United’s record defeat? The Whites’ biggest Premier League defeat explained

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Leeds United fell to their heaviest ever Premier League defeat as they lost 7-0 to Manchester City at the Etihad on Tuesday evening.

Phil Foden opened the scoring eight minutes into the match before Jack Grealish, Kevin de Bruyne, Riyad Mahrez, John Stones and Nathan Aké netted to take Leeds’ goal difference down to minus fifteen, pushing them below Southampton to 16th in the Premier League table.

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It was Leeds' heaviest top-flight defeat since the Premier League's inception in 1992, one of nine 7-0 results recorded in 19 years of the competition, including Norwich City's defeat at Stamford Bridge earlier this season.

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Leeds have never lost a game by a margin of more than seven goals, but Tuesday's City defeat matched three other losses by a seven-goal margin in the Whites’ history:

Stoke City 8-1 Leeds, Division One, August 27 1934

The record was set during the 1934/1935 season, when the departure of key player Wilf Copping to Arsenal left Dick Ray’s Leeds struggling for Division One form.

Following a 4-2 defeat to Middlesborough at Elland Road on the opening day of the season, Leeds travelled to the Victoria Ground where Stoke inflicted an 8-1 pasting.

The scoreboard at the Etihad on Tuesday night. Pic: Alex Livesey.The scoreboard at the Etihad on Tuesday night. Pic: Alex Livesey.
The scoreboard at the Etihad on Tuesday night. Pic: Alex Livesey.

Ray left the club in March 1935, though the Whites avoided relegation and finished 18th.

West Ham United 7-0 Leeds, League Cup, November 7 1966

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Leeds fell to their first 7-0 defeat during the 1966/1967 season, when recent World Cup winners Geoff Hurst and Martin Peters joined John Sissons on the scoresheet at Upton Park to knock the Whites out of the League Cup in the third round.

Eighteen-year-old reserve goalkeeper David Harvey was between the sticks for Don Revie’s side, but the Yorkshire Post refused to hold him responsible.

Norwich striker Teemu Pukki looks despairing during the Canaries' 7-0 defeat at Stamford Bridge. Pic: Shaun BotterillNorwich striker Teemu Pukki looks despairing during the Canaries' 7-0 defeat at Stamford Bridge. Pic: Shaun Botterill
Norwich striker Teemu Pukki looks despairing during the Canaries' 7-0 defeat at Stamford Bridge. Pic: Shaun Botterill

“David Harvey’s inexperience in goal at times was only too plain but it would be unfair to blame him,” the Yorkshire Post reported.

“Leeds were swept unceremoniously out of the League Cup, completely overwhelmed by the speed and accuracy of West Ham’s attack.

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“Leeds played the same side and used the same defensive formation as at Highbury, but were cracked open time and time again by a forward line whose appetite for goals was insatiable.”

Arsenal 7-0 Leeds, League Cup, September 4 1979

David Harvey in training outside Elland Road. Pic: Evening Standard.David Harvey in training outside Elland Road. Pic: Evening Standard.
David Harvey in training outside Elland Road. Pic: Evening Standard.

Leeds lost 7-0 again during the 1979/1980 season, as the Whites were still trying to establish an identity in the wake of Don Revie’s departure.

Jimmy Adamson’s Whites held Arsenal to a 1-1 draw at Elland Road in the first leg of the League Cup second round, as Bryon Stevenson converted a penalty to equalise Frank Stapleton’s 50th-minute opener.

The Whites boss felt confident that his side could qualify on the reverse.

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“Before the game I said a goalless draw would be a good result. It turned out to be 1-1 so we shall have to go to Highbury and lick them there,” Adamson said.

“I fancy our chances better at Highbury than I did at Elland Road. It will be easier for us to break Arsenal down when they play at home.”

Six days later, the Gunners put seven past Leeds, with one goal apiece for Stapleton and Sammy Nelson, a hat-trick for Alan Sunderland and two penalties from Liam Brady.

Leeds United head coach Jimmy Adamson shortly after taking over at Elland Road in October 1978. Pic: YPN.Leeds United head coach Jimmy Adamson shortly after taking over at Elland Road in October 1978. Pic: YPN.
Leeds United head coach Jimmy Adamson shortly after taking over at Elland Road in October 1978. Pic: YPN.

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