We’ve an interesting clash from the Championship this Sunday lunchtime as former Leeds boss Gary Monk returns to Elland Road with his new side Middlesbrough, with both teams eyeing a push on the playoffs.
It should be another sell out at the Yorkshire club, and with plenty riding on the game its one match not to be missed.
Gary Monk returns to Elland Road for the first time since his departure last summer. The former Swansea and now Middlesbrough manager almost guided Leeds to a surprise playoff finish in his only season in charge of United but fell just short in the end.
While Monk was performing miracles on the pitch, behind the scenes Leeds were in the process of being taken over. Soon after the deal went through Monk resigned much to the disappointment of the Leeds faithful. On Sunday he’s expected to be jeered by a large section of Leeds supporters, a tad unfair perhaps.
Monks’ replacement, Thomas Christiansen, enjoyed a bright start to life in England, but that has long since dissipated. Four defeats on the bounce has seen them drop out of the play off places and down to tenth.
As Leeds tumble down the league, Boro are on the up, but it’s not been plain sailing. Similar to his start at Leeds, Monk struggled in his first six or seven games at Boro before finally turning things around. Having endured some disappointing results the Championship’s big spenders have won three games on the bounce and now occupy a play-off spot.
Leeds will be boosted by the return of summer signing Caleb Ekuban. The striker has made just one appearance this season and is yet to find the net, but will probably have to settle for a place on the bench as Pierre-Michel Lasogga is expected to lead the line. The German striker has netted five goals so far this season and is 2/1 to score anytime.
For Boro they’ll be hoping youngster Marcus Tavernier can contain his good run of form. The 18 year old became a Riverside hero before the international break after scoring the winning goal over north east rivals Sunderland. And he’s a massive 16/1 to score first at Elland Road. But it’s Britt Assombalonga who shouldn’t be overlooked. Since his summer move from Forest he’s bagged 8 goals for Boro and he’s a healthy looking 4/1 for FGS.
The international break came at the right time for Leeds and with the added incentive of getting one over Gary Monk you’d expect them to be bang up for this one. That said Boro are in good form and will be tough to beat. But I’m going to go for Leeds to take all three points, with both teams to score at 6/1.
18+ Watch and bet country restrictions apply – funded account required & bet must have placed a bet in the last 24 hours to qualify to access streams. Please gamble responsibly.