Leeds United Bottle Promotion For Third Season Running

For many years, particular over the course of the nineties, Leeds United were regarded as a top tier team in English football. They were one of the teams present when the Premier League formed in 1992 and they remained there until 2005 when they suffered relegation to the Championship.

Since then they have struggled to get back to the greatest stage of English football, even spending a couple of years in the third tier. In the last couple of years, in particular, the club have been knocking on the door of promotion. However, their promotion charges have fallen apart at the crucial stage too many times. It now looks like Leeds could have bottled it again this year.

Leeds United Bottle Championship Promotion Once Again

2016/17: Late Season Collapse Squander Play-Off Dreams

The Whites came into this season following a disappointing 13th-place finish. This was the fifth season in a row that the club had finished between 13th and 15th place in the Championship and was also Garry Monk’s first season in charge of the club.

Monk’s spell in charge of Leeds did not get off to a good start. With only a single win, and four losses, from their opening six games, Leeds found themselves in the relegation zone. Things began to pick up from there, however, as three wins on the bounce lifted them into the top half. They stagnated somewhat around the mid-region of the table for a few weeks following this, with only one win in four.

After this, though, Leeds’ season truly sparked into life. A run of twelve wins and a draw in sixteen games found Leeds right in the battle for third place, with a third of the season left to play. Their season threatened to go wayward around this stage with a run of three defeats in five. However, they managed to survive their promotion charge for another few weeks with a seven-match unbeaten run.

After 30 games, with eight games left to play, Leeds were in fourth place and were eight points clear of Fulham in seventh place. What followed was a complete and utter collapse from Garry Monk’s men. From their final eight games, Leeds claimed a single victory, which saw them fall out of the play-off places.

2017/18: A Strong Start To The Season Derailed By Two Fatal Wobbles

In May of 2017, Leeds United were bought out by Andrea Radrizzani. Two days later, Garry Monk stepped down as manager only a year after having taken over. Thomas Christiansen was announced as Monk’s replacement, joining the club from APOEL. Over the course of the summer, Leeds brought in a raft of new signings, although many of them were free transfers.

Leeds started the season like a house on fire, going unbeaten in the first seven games with five wins. Christiansen’s honeymoon period soon came to a swift end, however. The side lost eight of the next 11 league matches. This saw them drop from top of the table to tenth place by the end of November.

Between the end of November and Christmas, Leeds’ form improved significantly with five wins and a draw in that period. This run saw them back up to fifth place heading into the new year. However, after Christmas, their form was hit by a second serious wobble. Between December 27th and February 4th Leeds failed to win single game. As a result, manager Christiansen was sacked.

Paul Heckingbottom was brought in to replace Christiansen in charge of Leeds, who had fallen to tenth place once again. Heckingbottom struggled to recover their form, winning only four of the 16 games that remained. Leeds finished the season back in 13th place, and Heckingbottom was sacked on the June 1st after just four months in charge.

2018/19: Leeds Collapse With The Finishing Line In Sight

On the back of season which saw two managers face the sack, Leeds brought in experienced Argentine Marcelo Bielsa to settle the ship. The most notable signing they made during the summer was the acquisition of Patrick Bamford on a £7 million transfer from Middlesborough.

Leeds’ new manager, once again, got off to a flying start. Bielsa’s first eight league games bore five wins and three draws. This run guided Leeds to the top of the table in the early stages of the season. Their league form trailed off somewhat with only three wins from the following nines games, although that was soon righted by a series of seven wins on the spin, leaving Leeds top of the table heading into the new year.

Despite remaining on top of the league for much of January, their form endured a serious decline after Christmas. Four defeats and a draw from the next six games saw Leeds drop off the summit heading into February, although it was still very tight. Leeds’ form after this was somewhat inconsistent, yet with 42 games played their fate was in their own hands. Unfortunately for the Leeds faithful, two losses and a draw have seen them slip behind Sheffield United into third. With only one game left and a four-point gap, automatic promotion has been blown.

Can They Hold Their Nerve in the Play-Offs?

Leeds United, they’ve done it again. However, one major difference is this year they are still in the mix for the play-offs. The question is with Leeds’ poor finish to the season and the form of Aston Villa, can Leeds United hold their nerve in the play-offs?

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2 Responses You are logged in as Test

  1. Third season running!!
    What a load of bollox this is the first season we have been challenging for promotion since we were promoted from div 1

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