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After taking the Elland Road reins last week, Jesse Marsch was quickly thrust into the spotlight as Leeds boss and although his new charges fell short against Leicester, it was a much better offering than in recent times.
While on Thursday, Leeds will look to make use of their game in hand and with a red-hot Aston Villa putting four unanswered goals past Southampton at the weekend, they will be in the mood to continue their recent resurgence.
With Leeds fighting for their lives towards the bottom of the Premier League table, they can no longer be in such a generous mood when it comes to defence and with new boss Jesse Marsch already doing his best to address this, tightening up will likely be the order of the day.
Which means even though Aston Villa made light work of Southampton at the weekend, the result may not be as cut and dry as first thought and that is why after looking at all the biggest betting sites, I have opted for something a little different.
I am of the opinion that there will be more goals in the second half at Elland Road, than there will be in the first and if you are also of this opinion, you can back this outcome at odds of 11/10 with bet365.
Even in defeat, Leeds looked far better in 90 minutes than they did in the whole of February. Then again, with last month being so bad under previous boss Marcelo Bielsa, improvement would not have been difficult to come by.
An improvement though that still saw them fall short at the weekend and with Harvey Barnes getting the game’s only goal, it meant that there would be no dream start for new boss Jesse Marsch against Leicester.
Gone are the days of man marking, now it is all about zonal pressure instead and if the new man in charge of Leeds can get his ideas working quickly, it might just aid the team’s current plight near the bottom.
While at the same time, if the relative gamble of a new appointment backfires and results do not appear in double quick time, there is every chance that Leeds could be plying their trade in the Championship next season.
Ultimately, Leeds can only take things one game at a time and if they are to have any chance of securing survival, they must begin to tighten things up in defence - especially as they are already averaging 2.25 goals against per game in the Premier League.
In terms of injuries and suspensions for the visit of Aston Villa, the outlook is looking slightly brighter now and with the returns of both Patrick Bamford and Charlie Cresswell in recent times, it means only Kalvin Phillips is unavailable in midweek.
After getting the better of Southampton last weekend, Philippe Coutinho reminded the football world just what a talent he really is and with the Saints seeing their unbeaten run come to an end, it also meant back-to-back league wins for Aston Villa.
A brace of wins that have not only seen Coutinho do the business against Brighton and Southampton, but the same could also be said for Ollie Watkins and with the former Brentford man scoring in both matches, he has seen a return to form in attack.
Something that will certainly please manager Steven Gerrard and with the former Rangers boss demanding more of Watkins, it is fair to say that the England international has taken the message on board.
A message that also helped propel Villa up to 11th in the Premier League table and with them on the same points as Crystal Palace in 10th, a top-half finish is still very much a target for the West Midlands outfit.
A target that Steven Gerrard will feel is certainly reachable and although it would be easy for this Villa side to relax and be on the beach for the rest of the season, there is no sign of tools being downed just yet.
In terms of injuries and suspensions for the trip to Leeds, it is almost a clean bill of health for Steven Gerrard and the only absentee is Marvelous Nakamba, as the midfielder will not be fit until the weekend.
When it comes to the history of these two sides, their most memorable meeting was the 1996 EFL Cup final. One that saw Aston Villa run out comfortable 3-0 winners at Wembley Stadium.
In terms of their overall head-to-head record, Leeds have won on 32 occasions, Aston Villa 40 and there have been 31 draws
Although Elland Road is one of the older stadiums within the Premier League, it is also home to a very noisy bunch of Leeds supporters and when they lend their voice on matchday, it is not a welcoming sound for any opposition outfit.
With COVID-19 restrictions being lifted in England, it means there is no longer the need to show a Vaccine Passport before attending the ground. Which means, match tickets are the only item that is required to be produced at the time of writing.
While when it comes to Aston Villa, there is not a great deal to focus on in terms of outright bets and this is due to the fact that they currently find themselves in mid-table. Which also means, your sole focus should be on whether they come out on top on Thursday or not.