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Leeds v Chelsea Preview

Wednesday night, up at Elland Road, will be a serious test of our mettle.

Following our heart-breaking defeat in Yokohoma City, to Corinthians, Rafa Bentiez is realistic enough to accept that out of the trophies left available for us to win, the Capital One Cup looks the best option.

But as those of us who have been to Elland Road, previously, to watch a fixture involving Leeds and Chelsea will testify, Elland Road will be a cauldron of hate packed to the rafters with Yorkshire`s finest spitting venom.

It`ll not be a place for the faint-hearted and those chosen to do battle will need to dig deep, match fore with fire and deny the Championship from imposing their more physical game on our cultured game.

Ahead of the game, this is something that Frank Lamaprd, expected to captain the side in John Terry`s continued absence, has spoken about in the media, as well as the defeat in Yokohoma, remarking,

"You can`t go and win every tournament every year. We`ve never done that. No-one does it. We worked very hard to get to the final."

"We`ve changed the personnel a bit this year, there has been a bedding-in process and we`ve changed the manager so there`s been quite a few circumstances this year."

"We have to pick it up for Leeds. We have to go there and stand up, then get our home form back."

"It`s very important that we do our stuff, not just at Leeds but in the league games over Christmas."

"Win at Leeds and we`re in the semi-final with the possibility of a decent draw, but it`s tough to go to Elland Road. There`s a rivalry."

"We`re aware of it and we have to play with passion and do the physical side of things because they`re going to be right at it."

"We can`t expect to go up there, tap it around and get a result. We have to do both sides of the game."

Indeed we do, but Rafa faces selection problems with John Terry still on the sidelines, the newly crocked Romeu also out with a serious knee injury and a trio of John Obi Mikel, Ramires and Gary Cahill out suspended, thereby limiting his options.

If you throw into the mixer the possibility of tiredness, form the 12 hour flight home from Japan, into the mixture, you can probably see why Leeds serious believe they have a chance of pulling off a shock this Wednesday evening.

Mutterings, from within the camp, initially suggested that Rafa might turn to the youngsters for this tie, but with Leeds in good form, having won 4 out of the last 5 Championship games, can Rafa take the gamble knowing that crashing out of this competition will heap more pressure on his troubled shoulders?

Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

The Journalist

Writer: Merlin Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Tuesday December 18 2012

Time: 4:53PM

Your Comments (oldest first)

Change to most recent first
Danny,marin,piazon should all start,with the jet leg+ so many important games coming its time to give those players and other players in reserve a chance.
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18/12/2012 17:11:00

Piazon ought to get game time before this game and marin too woukd have been useful in that game if we have given him confidence to play, I am at a loss and don't really know the personel we should use as benitez have already dampened the team's momentum, hilario, betrand,brana,luiz,paulo,rammy,saville,oscar,moses,piazon, and perhaps swift will do a decent job and we can bring in the big guns if things are getting to hard in the second half, but I doubt if this lineup can win, and we have a tough fixture in the weekend with a tough villa side
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18/12/2012 17:19:00

Can't wait for this match. The first minute will be very telling and a barometer of how the rest of the season will pan out. I'm hoping the boys are chomping at the bit right about now and give a display illustrating what happens when a sheep fecks with a wolf.
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18/12/2012 17:29:00

I am usually a very optimistic person but i honestly don't have that confidence that we would triumph at ellan road. The leeds utd players would be all fired up for this match against our jetlagged, tired and demoralised squad that would be missing key players through suspension and injuries. However like every fan should, i would be right behind the team and cheering for them as much as i can, beliving in the unpredictability of football. Up the chelz.... KTBFFH!
Chelz Akamz
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18/12/2012 17:59:00

This will be tomorrows likely lineup: cech; iva,luiz,azipeli,bert; rami, lamps; marin, oscar, piazon ; sturidge - i see marin getting his 1st start and i see us getting a win 2moro cant see it any other way!
pego sama
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18/12/2012 20:39:00

i just feel we are going to nick this one may be byt a lone goal
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18/12/2012 22:20:00

Either we come out fully fired up and do to Leeds what the gunners did to Reading or we will be in trouble. We need to score many times and early to remove all hope from these guys..the longer the match goes goalless the more leeds will believe they have a chance. God forbid they score first...we may then be in serious trouble. At any other time this should be a walk over for fact when this fixture was initially set most of us were relishing it with delight fully expecting us to humiliate Neil Warnock and his boys but now with all that has happened, the loss of form and confidence, the injuries, suspensions, jet lag and even more lagging team spirits this could go either way. For Rafas sake we had better win because if not i would hate to be in his shoes this yuletide season. Honestly if we dont get past Leeds i would say all holiday celebrations at Cobham be cancelled because in that unfortunate scenario it will need to be all hands on deck as there will be fire on the mountain making any end of year festivities totally inappropriate.
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18/12/2012 23:18:00

Well Leeds won't find a better time to play us for quite some time! Slightly worried about this one to be honest.... let's hope they're hungry and not too jet lagged. If we play as we can, then this shouldn't be a problem.
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19/12/2012 08:54:00

What sort of carelessness on the part of the entire chelsea staff and team is this? ..... ....
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19/12/2012 10:19:00

Cech-[Azpi-Iva-Nathan Ake-Cole]...[Luiz-Oscar].....[Moses-Mata-Hazard]...Torres
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19/12/2012 11:09:00

Cech-(Azpi-Iva-Luiz-Cole)....(legend lamps, Saville)...(Moses-Oscar-Marin)....Sturidge
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19/12/2012 11:55:00

Hi guys! Am new here. I think we should take the game very serious and considering injuries/suspensions on our end it will be one hell of a fight. Would love to see Marin and Oscar start..bring in Hazard in the 2nd half..
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19/12/2012 13:39:00

For the 1st time in a long while i dont know the chelsea to expect;is it a chelsea that is wounded and would go all out for vengeance?? Is it the shambolic chelsea i saw on sunday?? Or is it vintage chelsea??
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19/12/2012 13:43:00

Welcome to the family@Achn3m
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19/12/2012 13:46:00


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