The EFL is back and with it hopes and expectations are at their highest as every fan hopes that this season can yield success in some shape or another.
That, of course, is the case at Leeds United once again, with the Whites and Marcelo Bielsa aiming to build on a fine season last year and get back into the Premier League long last.
They take on Bristol City on Sunday afternoon in what should be an early belter, and so we caught up with Tom Bradley of I’d Radebe Leeds for the first time of this new season, to grab his thoughts ahead of the curtain-raiser…
1. How would you rate Leeds’ summer work so far?
A lot of fans will probably say they hoped to see more activity in the summer transfer window, after a season ravaged with injuries. But, I think we have been smart with who we have brought in. Costa will be one of the best players in the division, and Ben White will be a fan-favourite I’m sure, once he’s in the full swing of things. We are certainly heading into the new season with a small squad, so I hope it doesn’t hinder us again like it did last time.
2. And what, if anything, does Bielsa need to add before the window shuts?
We could do with another striker, despite the fact we still have Kemar Roofe (at the time of writing) and Patrick Bamford. Both suffered long-lasting injuries last campaign, and we suffered from a lack of a ’20-goal a season’ striker. I don’t think it will happen, but it would be nice to get a proven goalscorer in before the window shuts, especially if Roofe goes. In other areas, I think we are well covered with youngsters who will be chomping at the bit to play.
3. How are you, and other Leeds fans, feeling about the upcoming campaign?
I, personally, am optimistic about the season ahead. Teams will struggle to cope with ‘Bielsa ball’. We just need to show more composure in front of goal. Other fans are perhaps slightly frustrated at transfer activity, but I often find that’s because of the commotion transfer windows cause. People feel like your team has to spend money and sign an array of new talent. We’re going to benefit of continuity of both Bielsa and a lot of the squad that finished the campaign in 2018/2019. How many teams at the right end of the table will get to say that?
4. Bristol City are tipped, like Leeds, to challenge for promotion – how tough are you expecting them to be to beat this weekend?
Bristol City are a good side. They recruit well and have a manager who knows the club from top-to-bottom. It will be a stern test, but we have a decent record against the Robins, so hopefully that continues for us on Sunday.
5. Score prediction
Bristol City 2 Leeds United 3 – I expect a fast-flowing game and plenty of goals. We’ll just edge it.