Leeds United vs Stoke City: Preview and Prediction

Leeds United will look to keep the pressure on Leicester City at the top of the table when they welcome Stoke City to Elland Road on Tuesday.

The 2023/24 EFL Championship season begins only two days after the previous round of fixtures ended. Matchday 36 gets underway on Tuesday, which will bring us seven matches. The table-topping Leicester City will be in action on the day, with Leeds United also taking the field simultaneously when they host Stoke City at Elland Road.

Leeds United have been the most in-form team in the EFL Championship in 2024. The Whites managed only three wins in their first nine outings in the league this term but have gone ten games without a defeat this year. Daniel Farke’s men began 2024 with nine successive victories but dropped points for the first time in 2024 this past weekend, with Huddersfield Town holding them to a 1-1 draw.

As for Stoke City, they have been horrendous thus far in the 2023/24 season. The Potters began the campaign with a win and were as high as 11th in October. But they have steadily fallen in the standings in the last four months, winning only four of their 21 games during this period. So, it is hardly surprising that they have seen a managerial change, although Steven Schumacher has not galvanised the squad.

The reverse fixture ended in a 1-0 win for Stoke City, with Leeds United defender Pascal Struijk scoring an own goal to condemn his side to a defeat. The Hard Tackle takes a closer look at the encounter ahead of the latest meeting between the two sides.

Team News & Tactics

Leeds United

Daniel Farke does not have many pressing injury concerns hampering his preparations ahead of his side’s latest fixture. Against Stoke City on Tuesday, the Leeds United manager will be bereft of the services of three first-team players.

Karl Darlow (thumb), Pascal Struijk (groin) and Stuart Dallas (hip) are the only players on the sidelines for Leeds United. Jamie Shackleton (illness) and Joe Gelhardt (back) might return to the squad this midweek. But Farke might make a few rotations, with preserving Crysencio Summerville and Patrick Bamford being on his agenda.

So, Joel Piroe should spearhead the Leeds United attack against Stoke City, with Daniel James starting on the left flank. Georginio Rutter will play behind Piroe, making his usual ghosting runs, while Wilfried Gnonto will take his spot on the right wing.

As for the midfield unit, Ilia Gruev and Glen Kamara should pair up in the double pivot in the middle of the park. Finally, Illan Meslier will take his spot between the sticks, with Archie Gray, Ethan Ampadu, Joe Rodon, and Junior Firpo protecting him.

Probable Lineup (4-2-3-1): Meslier; Gray, Ampadu, Rodon, Firpo; Gruev, Kamara; Gnonto, Rutter, James; Piroe

Stoke City

Like his counterpart in the Leeds United dugout, Steven Schumacher does not have many roster issues to deal with ahead of the trip to Elland Road. The Stoke City manager will be without three players on Tuesday.

The left-back spot is an issue for the away side, with Jordan Thompson serving a suspension and Enda Stevens not fit enough to return to the starting eleven. Meanwhile, Luke McNally is recovering from a hamstring injury and will likely become available towards the end of this month.

Stoke City will line up in a 4-3-3 formation against Leeds United, with Daniel Iversen taking his place between the sticks. Lynden Gooch should start as the makeshift left-back in the absence of Stevens and Thompson. The American winger will join Ben Wilmot, Michael Rose, and Ki-Jana Hoever.

As for the midfield unit, Lewis Baker, Wouter Burger, and Josh Laurent will look to keep things tight in the middle of the park. The trio will also initiate quick transitions to catch Leeds United unaware on the counter. Finally, Niall Ennis should lead the line for the away side, with Million Manhoef and Bae Jun-ho accompanying him in the offensive trifecta.

Probable Lineup (4-3-3): Iversen; Hoever, Rose, Wilmot, Gooch; Baker, Burger, Laurent; Manhoef, Ennis, Bae

Key Stats

  • Leeds United have won three of their last five league games against Stoke City, scoring three or more goals in each win (L2). The Whites’ most recent meeting with the Potters at Elland Road came in July 2020 under Marcelo Bielsa (5-0).
  • Stoke City have won just one of their last 11 away league games against Leeds United (D4 L6), a 4-0 win in October 2006 under Tony Pulis.
  • Leeds United can record two different runs of at least seven successive league victories at home in the same Football League season for the first time by beating Stoke City on Tuesday.
  • Stoke City have lost their last three EFL Championship games on the road. They last endured a longer such run in away games in a single season in March 2021 (four games).
  • Patrick Bamford has scored in his last three league games at Elland Road for Leeds United (three goals). He last had a longer run for Middlesbrough, finding the back of the net in four successive home league games in March 2018.

Player to Watch

Crysencio Summerville

Embed from Getty Images

Summerville might not start on Tuesday as Daniel Farke looks to keep his star attacker fit for the business end of the 2023/24 season. But the Dutchman will likely appear off the bench if Stoke City can keep Leeds United at bay for long periods on Tuesday.

The 22-year-old has been the game-changer for Leeds United this season, showing incredible levels of productivity in the final third. That has brought him interest from several high-profile clubs. But Summerville remains focused on the job at hand and will be eager to ensure automatic promotion to the Premier League.


Leeds United 2-0 Stoke City

Stoke City will head into Tuesday’s fixture on the back of a morale-boosting 2-0 win over Middlesbrough. That should give the players a spring in their steps this midweek when they lock horns with Leeds United at Elland Road.

So, the Potters might succeed in keeping Leeds United at bay for long periods on Tuesday. But the gulf in quality should shine through, with Crysencio Summerville and Patrick Bamford delivering the goods off the bench. The Hard Tackle predicts a 2-0 win for Daniel Farke and his charges.

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