Manchester United vs Leeds predictions: Red Devils can get the job done early
- Man United are in red-hot home form, winning their last 13 Old Trafford outings
- Leeds arrive without a manager, having sacked Jesse Marsch earlier this week
- Recommended bet: Man United/Man United half-time/full-time double result
Leeds looked aimless in Sunday’s limp defeat to Nottingham Forest and it was perhaps little surprise that manager Jesse Marsch received his marching orders, with the Whites hovering above the relegation places while those around them improved.
Now they face back-to-back meetings with Manchester United, who will not be inclined to show any sympathy for Leeds’ plight given a hellish run on the horizon for the Red Devils.
With tough games to come in Europe, the Carabao Cup final, the Premier League and FA Cup, United manager Erik ten Hag will be keen to see his team quickly kill off weaker opponents so that key men can be withdrawn once points seem secure.
A buzzing Old Trafford is sure to roar their team on against ailing visitors, and Leeds’ troubles could look even worse after two meetings with their old rivals.
United's Casemiro serves the first of a three-match domestic suspension and fellow defensive midfielder Scott McTominay is a significant doubt with a muscular injury.
Attacking midfielders Christian Eriksen and Donny van de Beek are out with long-term injuries to the ankle and knee respectively, and striker Anthony Martial is a doubt after a setback in his recovery.
Leeds suffered a major blow with the news that 10-goal striker Rodrigo will be out for six to eight weeks with an ankle injury.
Youngsters Archie Gray and Sonny Perkins are both around a week away from returning from ankle injuries and midfielder Adam Forshaw is also scheduled to return from a groin injury next week.
Key centre-back Robin Koch returns from a one-match suspension but long-term injury victim Stuart Dallas remains absent as he recovers from a broken leg.
Since returning to the top flight in 2020-21, Leeds have conceded 15 goals in four meetings with Manchester United — losing 5-1 and 6-2 at Old Trafford and suffering a 4-2 at Elland Road last term having held the Red Devils to a 0-0 draw at home in 2021.
And there is little indication the Whites will end a 20-year wait for a league victory over their rivals as no Premier League team this term has picked up fewer away points than Leeds, taking just five from a possible 30.
Leeds have also collected just two points from eight meetings with opponents from the top eight and are currently seven matches without a win, losing at Nottingham Forest and Aston Villa in their last two away trips.
Manchester United’s recent form is dented by a draw at Crystal Palace and defeat at Arsenal but their home record is superb.
Ten Hag’s men have won each of their last 13 home games in all competitions, with Marcus Rashford scoring in 10 of those.
Leeds are following a worrying trajectory as they have taken just two points from their last four games — and they were a winnable set of fixtures in which they hosted West Ham and Brentford and took trips to Aston Villa and Nottingham Forest.
Now they face a considerable step up in class against a Manchester United side who are flying thanks in large part to the excellent form of Marcus Rashford, who would make an excellent addition to Bet Builder selections.
The absence of Eriksen and Casemiro is a slight concern but a Leeds side who have been all action but no direction this season are likely to lack the quality and confidence to capitalise — particularly in the absence of star striker Rodrigo.
With a host of massive games on the horizon, Ten Hag will be keen to kill Leeds off as quickly as possible.
And a Red Devils' side who have led at half-time in six of their eight Premier League home games this season can do just that.