Stoke City's Leeds United blueprint outlined as Schumacher makes key demand ahead of Elland Road clash

Stoke City travel to Elland Road to take on Leeds United this evening
Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now

Huddersfield Town's performance against Leeds United on Saturday might just provide Stoke City with something of a blueprint to take something off the Whites. Steven Schumacher brings his relegation-threatened Stoke side to Elland Road this evening and while he knows they have their work cut out, he has stressed that Leeds are not 'invincible'.

The Whites saw their nine-game winning run halted over the weekend as the Terriers, who were reduced to 10-men following the dismissal of Jonathan Hogg, clung on to claim a 1-1 draw at the John Smith's Stadium. That was enough to see Leeds fall out of the automatic promotion spots, but they know a win over Stoke, who they lost to in the reverse fixture last October, would give them a chance of rectifying that.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Daniel Farke's side are unbeaten at home this season, of course, and they're heavy favourites to pick up maximum points this evening. The Potters have done their homework, though, and after slipping into the bottom three last month they'll determined to build on their win over Middlesbrough last week and climb the table.

Schumacher has already been to Leeds once this season while in charge of Plymouth, who despite losing 2-1 pushed Leeds close, and he's confident that his Stoke side can go at least one better.

"They’ve got so many strengths," the Potters boss said. "They’ve got players with speed, players with Premier League experience, players with quality who can handle the ball in all areas of the pitch. The goalkeeper’s excellent.

"There aren’t many weaknesses in their team. But as Huddersfield showed, if you get the game plan right, if you get the attitude right to go and compete with Leeds and stand toe-to-toe with them, you’ve got a chance of getting a result.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"Huddersfield had 10 men for the whole of the second half and did really well so that should give us confidence. They are not unbeatable or invincible. We have to go there and be positive."

He added: "You’ve got to do both sides of the game as well as you possibly can. The first goal in this league is crucial and that’s proven pretty much every week. But if you do have a set-back, there’s no point throwing the towel in.

"You have to stick together and try to grind your way through tough moments. If you can keep the score close you’ll have a chance.

"When I went there earlier on in the season with Argyle we went 2-0 down but found a way in the second half to get back into the game and push Leeds right to the very end. We’ll try to do a little bit better than that here."

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

On the injury front, Stoke will be travelling without the likes of Enda Stevens, Luke McNally and Jordan Thompson, but Schumacher has confirmed there are no new issues within the group.

"It’s all clear from the weekend, no issues thankfully," he added. "That doesn’t often happen. Everyone trained today, which was good. We had everyone in yesterday for recovery. We’re the same squad and ready to go."

Related topics:

Comment Guidelines

National World encourages reader discussion on our stories. User feedback, insights and back-and-forth exchanges add a rich layer of context to reporting. Please review our Community Guidelines before commenting.