Football Predictions

Leeds United vs Derby County preview, predictions & expected line-ups

By Harry Edwards

Published: 13:31, 13 May 2019

Leeds United will be looking to keep their quest for a Premier League return alive when they welcome Derby County to Elland Road.

Marcelo Bielsa’s men go into the Championship play-off semi-final second leg with a 1-0 advantage, thanks to Kemar Roofe’s goal at Pride Park on Saturday.

Read on for Leeds vs Derby live stream options, team news, predicted XIs, stats and TV channel info.

When is Leeds vs Derby?

Competition: Championship play-offs

Venue: Elland Road

Date: Wednesday, 15 May

Kick-off: 7:45 PM BST

Where can I watch live?

Leeds’ game against Derby can be viewed by UK residents on Sky Sports Main Event and Sky Sports Football, channels 401 and 403 respectively on Sky and channels 501 and 503 respectively, for Virgin Media users.

Head-to-head

Leeds and Derby have built up a rivalry this season due to the ‘Spygate’ incident, and it is one Bielsa’s side have dominated. The Whites have won all three games so far this season, while also extending their all-time record to 57 wins compared to Derby’s 37.

Leeds United wins: 57 Draws: 28 Derby County wins: 37

Match preview

Leeds United have not been a Premier League club since 2004, dropping as low as League One since their demise. But the Whites are now just two games away from the big league once more – though Derby will be doing their best to rob Leeds of a Wembley date.

For some, Leeds should not even be in the play-offs, after their storming start to the season under Bielsa had them looking like certainties for automatic promotion. But poor form in the final 10 games of the season saw them drop behind Norwich City and Sheffield United, and they will now rely on the play-offs to keep their Premier League dream alive.

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And they are in a good position, taking a 1-0 lead over Derby into Wednesday’s second leg at Elland Road, where they won 2-0 earlier in the season. In fact, Leeds are unbeaten in their last four games against the Rams and Bielsa has had Frank Lampard’s number all season – as shown by the extensive presentation post Spygate.

Though Derby will feel slightly hard done by in the defeat, having seen a penalty decision overruled after Jack Harrison brought down Jayden Bogle inside the box. It brought about a fiery end to the game, and Wednesday is expected to be much of the same.

Can Derby overcome the odds?

After finishing sixth in the Championship, Derby once again gave themselves a chance at returning to the Premier League. But history is against them.

This season is Derby’s eighth appearance in the play-offs of England’s second tier – the most of any other team. However, they have only advanced once out of the previous seven occasions, winning promotion to the Premier League in 2006/07.

And any Derby fans worried by their chances would not have been buoyed by their sixth-placed finish – a less than successful position for play-off glory.

In the past 13 seasons, just one sixth-placed team have managed to win promotion to the Premier League via the play-offs, with Blackpool breaking the trend in 2009/10. In contrast, third-placed teams have had the most success in second-tier play-off history – being promoted to the Premier League 37% of the time.

Things really don’t look good for Derby.

BetBull odds – Leeds win: 8/11 Draw: 5/2 Derby win: 7/2

Is Leeds’ play-off final place secure?

Given all the odds appearing to be in Leeds’ favour, you could be forgiven for expecting the Whites to reach the Championship play-off final. But Bielsa has a warning to any fans or players expecting a Wembley place.

The past week of English football has been simply ridiculous with both Tottenham Hotspur and Liverpool advancing to the Champions League final, despite being three goals down in their respective semi-final ties against Ajax and Barcelona.

And Bielsa understands his side’s 1-0 lead means nothing with the second-leg still to play.

“The Champions League games this week are a warning of what could happen,” he told reporters.

“A 1-0 lead is not enough to be comfortable going into the second leg. It is an advantage, but we still have 90 minutes to play.”

Team news

Leeds will be sweating on the fitness of Adam Forshaw and Pontus Jansson who picked up injury problems on Saturday, forcing Bielsa’s team to deal with a lack of squad depth. The Whites will also be able to call upon Patrick Bamford who returns from his two-game ban.

Meanwhile, Derby have no fresh injury problems ahead of the second leg.

Predicted Line-ups

1. Forshaw to miss out

Leeds were excellent on Saturday, taking the life out of Derby’s attack with a well set-up defence. And there is no reason for Bielsa to make many changes.

At right-back, Luke Ayling was superb in keeping Tom Lawrence quiet while Stuart Dallas combined well with Jack Harrison on the opposite flank. But Forshaw and Jansson may not be risked with a potential final on the horizon.

Then, there’s Derby’s worst nightmare: Roofe. The forwarded ended an 11-game goal drought at the weekend to net his fourth against the Rams this season.

Predicted Leeds XI (4-1-4-1): Casilla; Ayling, Berardi, Cooper, Dallas; Phillips; Hernandez, Shackleton, Klich, Harrison; Roofe.

2. Lampard to drop Nugent

Derby’s attack as a whole was poor on Saturday but David Nugent was especially toothless in front of goal. The veteran striker managed just one shot on goal in 64 minutes and was unable to offer anything threatening for his team-mates to look to.

As a result, Lampard could opt for a bold move and drop Nugent, replacing him with Jack Marriott as he did midway through the second half on Saturday.

There could also be a move further forward for Mason Mount, who struggled from a deeper position, with Tom Huddleston coming in to help in the midfield battle.

Predicted Derby XI (4-2-3-1): Roos; Bogle, Tomori, Keogh, Malone; Huddlestone, Johnson; Wilson, Mount, Lawrence; Marriott.

Squawka Prediction

Yet again it seems Derby County are set to go out at the play-off semi-final stages, condemning them to another season in the Championship. Leeds 1-0 Derby.

BetBull odds – Leeds United to win 1-0: 11/2

BetBull odds correct as of 12/05/19 14:50