A really good looking weekend of action in the Sky Bet Championship begins at the King Power Stadium on Friday night when two promotion chasers meet as the leaders Leicester City play host to an improving Leeds United side.
Both teams would have set out to make an immediate return to the Premier League this term. Leicester look well on the way to achieving that aim while Leeds have found enough form after a slow start to suggest they can still achieve that ambition too.
Where to watch
The match will be shown live and in full on the Sky Main Event and Sky Football channels with the build-up at the King Power Stadium beginning at 7.30pm ahead of the 8pm kick off.
Leicester City managed to hold on to enough players from their relegated squad and bring in sufficient reinforcements that they were expected to be right towards the top of the table for much of the season but the way that they have begun the campaign they are on course to break plenty of Championship records this term. They have won 13 of their opening 14 matches and are looking very much like an even better version of Burnley from last season, which took some doing.
Everything is working nicely for the Foxes. They are the joint leading scorers in the division, which you would expect for a side with the attacking talent that they have at their disposal, but they have conceded six goals fewer than anyone in the division too having conceded just eight goals in their 14 matches. They are already 14 points clear of third placed Leeds and could open up an even bigger game on them with a win here.
Leeds United needed a bit of a rebuild after a complete shambles of a final season in the Premier League last term so it is probably understandable that they only won one of their opening five matches in this campaign. Gradually they have built what they wanted to and they head into this one off the back of four wins from their last five, although their doubters would be quick to point out that all four of those victories have come against teams in the bottom nine in the league at present.
Only the top two teams in the league have scored more goals than Leeds United this season. That is a big thing because Leeds really struggled for goals the longer last season went on. Where they really needed to change was defensively and while there are signs of them improving in that area, they head to the King Power without a clean sheet in their last six and that is a concern. No team has scored twice on Leicester this season so were Leeds to concede their chances of winning would drop substantially.
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Tom Cannon is closing in on a Foxes debut but the consensus seems to be that this match will come too soon for him but Kasey McAteer is expected to be in contention to start the game. Leicester will be without Wilfred Ndidi and Yunus Akgun.
Leeds United defender Joe Rodon left the win over Huddersfield Town last weekend early with what seemed to be a hamstring injury so he will be assessed ahead of the match. Willy Gnonto will be pushing for a start after coming off the bench last week.
This should be a cracking game, one which I think Leicester City will win but we shouldn’t take Leeds United lightly. I’ve a feeling we are going to see some goals in this one but the way Leicester control the ball it isn’t an absolute guarantee so I’m going to look at the player markets for a bet on this game and I’ll take two of them which both revolve around the Leicester defender Jannik Vestergaard, who I think could have some joy here.
One area where Leeds have struggled for a while now is defending set plays and in their last three matches Shane Duffy and Michal Helik have scored from the back against them and it was a set piece which the Stoke goal came from too. Vestergaard was recently on the scoresheet against Swansea City and is a physical presence in the opposition box for the classy Leicester dead ball takers to find. Leeds are not a big side and so the even money on the Dane to register a shot looks big and I’ll add a point on top to see if an effort from him finds the net too.
Back J.Vestergaard – Over 0.5 shots for a 3/10 stake at 2.00 with Bet365
Back J.Vestergaard to score anytime for a 1/10 stake at 12.00 with Bet365