West Ham United v Leeds United: YEP Jury give their big-match predictions

After last week’s controversial 2-0 defeat at West Ham, Marcelo Bielsa’ Leeds United return to the London Stadium to face the same opposition in the league and our jurors have a feeling things might just be different this time around. Read their thoughts below:

By Mark Absolon
Friday, 14th January 2022, 5:45 am

ANDREW DALTON

It’s a case of deja vu for Leeds United as they return to the London Stadium for the second time in two weeks, on this occasion with league points at stake as the second half of the campaign kicks off in East London.

It’s the first time since February 1979 that we’ve played the same team back to back away from Elland Road in consecutive games in different competitions; it will be interesting to see the line-up released at 1pm on Sunday with the likes of Stuart Dallas, Adam Forshaw and Raphinha looking to be back in the starting XI.

Leeds United fans hope to see Patrick Bamford (pictured) and/or Rodrigo back in the Premier League matchday squad to face West Ham on Sunday. Picture: Tony Johnson/JPIMedia.

It is also hoped that Rodrigo and Patrick Bamford may feature against the Hammers. With Diego Llorente sitting this one out due to five yellow cards, I would expect Robin Koch to partner Luke Ayling with Stuart Dallas at right-back and, concussion permitting, Junior Firpo at left-back.

I feel Leeds can pick something up before going into a huge game at home to Newcastle and a possible reunion for the second time this month with ex-striker Chris Wood.

Prediction: West Ham United 1 Leeds United 1.

ANDY RHODES

Leeds United fans hope to see Rodrigo (pictured) and/or Patrick Bamford back in the Premier League matchday squad to face West Ham on Sunday. Picture: Tony Johnson/JPIMedia.

With United’s fans preparing themselves for another long trip south to West Ham this weekend, they will be hoping for a better result against the in-form side.

The Hammers have won their last three league games to reclaim fourth spot in the table, making four changes in midweek as they swept Norwich aside.

Leeds will ring the changes here too but how they will line up is anyone’s guess.

Raphinha would give an added threat out wide, while defensive changes are required due to suspension, but we may yet see injured players return for this game. Keep your fingers crossed.

Leeds United fans expect to see Raphinha start this time out in the Premier League encounter at West Ham United on Sunday. Picture: Bruce Rollinson/JPIMedia.

The second half of Sunday’s FA Cup game saw Leeds create far more quality chances than in the first half.

Putting the ball in the net was the issue with Jack Harrison and Dan James both missing the target.

Despite playing each other just last week, this will be an even greater test of nerve for both sides. It’s not quite winner takes all but a win for Leeds would be priceless.

Prediction: West Ham United 1 Leeds United 1.

Leeds United manager Marcelo Bielsa on the sidelines at West Ham last weekend. Picture: Nigel French/PA Wire.

DAVID WATKINS

So, West Ham again, and this time we really could help ourselves a great deal by coming home with at least a point.

Assuming we have Raphinha, Forshaw and Dallas in from the start this time, then I don’t see why we can’t. West Ham eased past Norwich on Wednesday night with a dominant display that reminded us, if we needed a reminder, that Jarrod Bowen is the man we have to keep a close eye on! He scored two and hit the woodwork twice on the night and has now been involved in no fewer than 16 goals for the Hammers this season – eight goals and eight assists.

The next 10 days will see three clashes between teams below us: Newcastle face Watford on Saturday; Burnley play Watford next Tuesday; Watford host Norwich next Friday. Any points that we can muster in this period would likely see us putting further significant distance between ourselves and the bottom three.

The only luck that came our way last Sunday was the bad kind so a helping hand from that particular lady would not go amiss this time.

Prediction: West Ham United 2 Leeds United 2.

KEITH INGHAM

Another long journey faces the Leeds fans and once again East London their destination.

Many of these fans were there to see West Ham win the FA Cup tie 2-0 and they will be hopeful Leeds can actually score a goal this time and get something out of the game.

There were rumours on Tuesday afternoon that Rodrigo and Patrick Bamford could be available for the game, if not, it looks like some of the players that started the game plus Adam Forshaw, Stuart Dallas and Raphinha with Dan James up front.

Diego Llorente and Tyler Roberts are suspended for the game but Roberts is also injured so wouldn’t have been available anyway.

West Ham are a good team, as I mentioned in the Cup preview, and, with Michail Antonio back amongst the goals, the Leeds rearguard will probably be kept busy.

Kalvin Phillips’ England international pal Declan Rice is another player to keep an eye on. They deserve to be challenging for a place in the top four.

With Leeds understrength, I can only see a defeat again making it three in a week; the Under-23s lost on Monday.

The signs are ominous of a heavy defeat at the London Stadium which would put more doubt in the fans’ minds.

Prediction: West Ham United 3 Leeds United 0.

MIKE GILL

After a creditable performance last Sunday against West Ham United, the Whites have to go to East London and do it all again, this time with the hope of squeezing at least a point from their uncompromising hosts.

What we do know is that United should be able to field a slightly stronger side than the one that faced the Hammers last week minus the services of Diego Llorente, of course.

David Moyes is one of the best coaches in the Premier League and has built a squad that is chipping away at the glass ceiling that separates the so-called ‘big six’ clubs who ‘look down’ at the rest of us.

It is a big ask to expect or hope for any sort of result this time around but Leeds have to keep fighting for every point available.

Nobody could fault their effort or commitment last week. They were also unfortunate but, in the end, they were beaten by a better side.

This is a fans’ jury not a tipster service so I don’t feel in any way irresponsible in predicting a draw.

Prediction: West Ham United 1 Leeds United 1.

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