Date:Monday August 20 2012
Leeds United will be looking to put their poor midweek form behind them this season when they travel to Blackpool on Tuesday night for their first midweek game of the season.
Leeds have had a dismal record in the past two seasons in the championship and boss Neil Warnock felt that the side were not fit enough to handle two games in the space of four days when he first arrived at the club.
In Leeds promotion season of 2009/10, they won seven of their ten games played on either a Tuesday or a Wednesday night including scoring four at both Bristol Rovers and Tranmere Rovers.
Since their promotion to the championship though, they have been on the end of some heavy midweek defeats and have picked up just three wins from a possible nineteen games.
Leeds first midweek fixture following their promotion to the championship was at Barnsley where they suffered a 5-2 defeat. In their next midweek game, the club conceded six goals at home for the first time in their history when struggling Preston North End left Elland Road with a 6-4 win.
The whites finished the season just three points outside the play offs and their midweek form cost them dearly, picking up just six points from a possible twenty-seven.
Leeds only win that season came when they gained revenge over Preston with a 2-1 win at Deepdale and they finished the season with a record of one win, three draws and five defeats from their midweek fixtures.
Last season they managed just eight points from a possible thirty in midweek.
They enjoyed two wins, which were both good wins. Hull were defeated 4-1 at home and on an emotional night at the City Ground following the death of Gary Speed, Nottingham Forest were beaten 4-0.
Unfortunately, many of the midweek performances were nothing more than embarrassing.
Leeds picked up just one point from a possible six against relegated Coventry City.
The home form was particularly embarrassing. Blackpool won 5-0 on a night when Paul Rachubka had a nightmare in goal for Leeds. Birmingham won 4-1 in January, which resulted in Simon Grayson being sacked the following day and worse was to come. Just a season after conceding six at home for the first time in Leeds history, Nottingham Forest left Elland Road with a new record after a 7-3 win.
Warnock has always built his sides on the level of their fitness, he has rebuilt the squad in the summer with eleven new signings and judging on the performance against Wolverhampton Wanderers on Saturday, the desire and passion to give their all for their manager was clear to see.
It will be interesting to see how Leeds will do against Blackpool on Tuesday night. Blackpool are once again fancied to do well in the championship after falling at the final hurdle against West Ham in the play-off final last season.
The side managed by Ian Holloway started the season with a 2-0 win at Millwall on Saturday and the game will be a serious test of Leeds promotion credentials.
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Date:Monday August 20 2012
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