Burnley vs Leeds United will be an early kick-off on Saturday, May 15 in the Premier League. Leeds United would be delighted by how their first season panned out while Burnley, against all the odds, survived yet again in the top-flight of English football on a limited budget.
The previous meeting between the two clubs was decided by an early penalty netted home by Leeds striker Patrick Bamford. The Whites then were able to keep a clean sheet against relentless attacks from Burnley. It was a resilient performance by Marcelo Bielsa’s team in late December 2020 and they’d be hoping for more of the same from this encounter as well.
To build up to the game, we’ve identified four key player battles that can decide the outcome of Burnley vs Leeds United.
BEN MEE vs PATRICK BAMFORD
The captain of Burnley, Ben Mee going head-to-head against Leeds’ talisman, Patrick Bamford can be a key battle to look out for in this game. Bamford has scored 15 goals and assisted seven times in the league this season. His goal contribution is higher than any player that would take the pitch on Saturday and that’s predominantly the reason why Burnley have to find a way to keep Bamford quiet.
Ben Mee is a remarkable defender and should be able to win most aerial battles against Bamford, but he’d certainly be worried about the speed of the Leeds striker.
ASHLEY WESTWOOD vs STUART DALLAS
Both Ashley Westwood and Stuart Dallas got on the scoresheet in their previous matches for Burnley and Leeds. Both are expected to start in the midfield holding role with Dallas given more freedom to run forward in the opposition box. They both have the ability to dictate play and with Leeds’ man-to-man defending style, they’d often be up against each other in the middle of the park fighting for second balls.
NICK POPE vs ILLAN MESLIER
This is the battle of two young and future stars of their respective countries. France are looking for a long term replacement for Hugo Lloris and Illan Meslier has shown this season that he has the potential to be a top keeper in the future. While England are already looking at Nick Pope ahead of Euro 2020, as the England number one job is up for grabs. Expect both the custodians to be difficult to beat and they’d be making some crucial saves in this game.
CHRIS WOOD vs DIEGO LLORENTE
Chris Wood is Burnley’s highest goalscorer in the Premier League this season and he is a tall, strongly-built striker who likes to bully the opposition centre-backs. Given Wood’s size, Leeds would look to have Diego Llorente up against him given that he is their most aerially dominating centre-back. This battle could get feisty as the match progresses and surely one to look out for.
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