After avoiding relegation last season, expectations are high for Jesse Marsch and Leeds United. The pressure of securing Premier League safety has been replaced with the pressure of making new signings work after being backed heavily by the board during the summer. Leeds United have added six new players headlined by Brenden Aaronson, Luis Sinisterra, and Tyler Adams. They’ll have the tough role of keeping the team ticking after the exits of Kalvin Phillips and Raphinha but while a lot will be different for Leeds United quite a bit will stay the same.
The players may change but the press will remain as Marsch keeps the core dynamics honed under Marcelo Bielsa intact. Leeds’ summer business has been in direct contrast to that of Wolves. Bruno Lage needs attacking reinforcements after his side only scored 38 goals last season but instead Fabio Silva was loaned to Belgium and Nathan Collins has been the only addition. Collins was a strong defender with Burnley who will soften the blow of losing Romain Saiss but he can’t be responsible for putting the ball in the back of the net.
A lot of pressure is on the attack of Pedro Neto, Daniel Podence, and Morgan Gibbs-White who have all had flashes of good performances but due to injuries and youth haven’t put everything together for an entire season. With Leeds being defensively suspect, can they kick off the season on a positive note?
Here’s our storylines, how you can watch the match and more:
How to watch and odds
- Date: Saturday, Aug. 6 | Time: 10 a.m. ET
- Location: Elland Road — Leeds, West Yorkshire
- TV/Live stream: Peacock
- Odds: Leeds United +128; Draw +235; Wolverhampton Wanderers +215 (via Caesars Sportsbook)
Featured Game | Leeds United vs. Wolverhampton
Leeds United: Marsch has quite a few selection issues. Stuart Dallas and Luke Ayling are long term absentees and neither will feature this month with Dallas likely being out until after the World Cup. Junior Firpo and Lusis Sinesterra are progressing but Firpo is a few weeks away while Sinesterra could likely return to training next week. The biggest miss will be the heart of the defense Liam Cooper who is still carrying an Achilles injury from the offseason. He’s not in first team training at the moment but Marsch is hopeful that he isn’t too far out. Daniel James will also miss the match due to a suspension that has carried over from last season. These absentees will make team selection tough for Marsch but that’s why it’s important that the team has depth now as this many doubts would have crippled them in the past.
Wolverhampton Wanderers: Lage’s already short attack isn’t helped by injuries to Adama Traore and Raul Jimenez. Back from Barcelona, Traore is sidelined with a hamstring injury while Jimenez is dealing with an MCL injury. Without a traditional striker available, Neto and Podence will share the load atop the attack but the team usually struggles to score when Jimenez isn’t available. They also struggle with him though, so it’s not all down to absence. Nelson Semedo will also miss out but Wolves have plenty of defensive depth to cope with his absence.
This game could go a few different ways but I’m expecting more of a free flowing match than the standard performances from Wolves. It wouldn’t be shocking if this match produces the most goals of the day. Pick: Leeds United 2, Wolves 2