Leeds United’s fourth win a row against Yorkshire rivals Hull City meant that the Whites opened up a five-point gap over third-placed Fulham. It was another huge step towards automatic promotion for Marcelo Bielsa’s men, but with ten games to go and 30 points to play for; is promotion really nailed on for this famous club?
Ask any of the Leeds United fans whether promotion is a given with ten games to go and they will go into a cold sweat and turn the colour of the snow in February. This fanbase is under no illusions and takes nothing for granted after Leeds somehow managed to bottle promotion last year by losing to Frank Lampard’s Derby County in the playoffs.
"Stop crying Frank Lampard." 🎼
A Leeds United song rebounded as Derby County fought back to make the Play-off finals.
— BBC Sport (@BBCSport) May 16, 2019
In actual fact, the choking started a lot earlier than that as Leeds surrendered a 1-0 lead to ten-man Wigan on Good Friday and ended up losing 2-1 at home. It was on that day in the glorious spring sunshine at Elland Road that the Leeds fans probably knew that promotion wasn’t going to happen.
Further defeats to Brentford and bottom of the table Ipswich Town at Portman Road on the last day of the season meant that the Whites went into the play-offs in truly shocking form. The rest, as they say, is history.
8/1 Seems Decent Value On History To Repeat Itself For Leeds
That’s why the question has to be asked whether you can ignore Leeds’ odds not to be promoted when they only have a five-point lead over third place? For instance, when you bet on football with Betfair, you will be given 8/1 odds on Leeds not to be promoted which let’s be honest, many long-suffering Leeds fans have jumped on as an insurance policy should the heartache of missing out on promotion come around again.
The general thinking is that if Leeds miss out on automatic promotion then they won’t go up via the play-offs; it must be said that this is a point of view that the Leeds faithful more than agree with. In fact, take a stroll through the concourse at Elland Road on match days and you will be told in no uncertain terms that Leeds don’t do playoffs. So really, it is now or never for the club as they battle to keep the chasing pack at bay.
— Leeds United (@LUFC) February 29, 2020
On paper, it looks likely that Leeds will be able to do it as they have the easiest run-in of any of the top six. More good news is that six of Leeds' last ten fixtures are at the fortress that is Elland Road. Make no mistake, you can see why Leeds are at those odds not to be promoted but you can’t brush over the fact that at the end of the day, this is Leeds United; a club that specializes in making their own downfall happen.
Leeds Blowing It Again Will Be Headline News
It won’t just be the city of Leeds holding its breath but also the entire footballing world as the end of the season approaches. This is a story that will make headlines around the world whether they do or don't get promoted. Will it be a repeat of last year’s tragedy or will Marcelo Bielsa’ men finally taste redemption? Time will tell.