‘Far from reliable’: Mark Lawrenson predicts who will win out of Chelsea and Leeds tomorrow

Mark Lawrenson has rather unconvincingly backed Chelsea to beat Leeds United on Wednesday evening.

Lawrenson prophesied a 2-0 Premier League win for Thomas Tuchel’s men at Elland Road whilst writing for the BBC.

Tuchel would probably bite your hand off for a 2-0 scoreline right now, considering not only the events of last weekend, but the importance of securing all three points.

Chelsea were two goals to the good against Wolverhampton Wanderers before conceding twice in the final flourishes of the fixtures.

Romelu Lukaku’s rare forays in front of goal ultimately only drummed up a draw, rather than a triumph that his contribution deserved.

This latest hurdle means Champions League football is still not yet confirmed for next season, a rather startling scenario bearing in mind the Blues were top in December.

Photo by Stephanie Meek – CameraSport via Getty Images

Leeds are fighting for their lives

Meanwhile, down at the opposite end of the table, Leeds need the victory for very differing reasons.

Jesse Marsch’s initial honeymoon period, which included five games unbeaten, has hit a snag after successive losses to Manchester City and Arsenal.

The 2-1 defeat to the Gunners, coupled with Everton’s conquest over Leicester City, means Leeds are just three matches away from relegation.

Their chances haven’t been boosted by the fact they face another of the top-four sides in quick succession, even if Chelsea are not exactly formidable right now.

But this didn’t influence Lawrenson’s verdict too much when handing the gold medal to Tuchel’s team for tomorrow’s encounter.

Mark Lawrenson makes his prediction

“Leeds were frantic and frenzied against Arsenal on Sunday, and it didn’t help them very much,” said the former Liverpool defender.

“They might have lost that game anyhow, but to be beaten the way they were was not a good sign for a team that is now in the thick of a relegation scrap.

“Chelsea are not exactly in convincing form themselves. They threw away a 2-0 lead against Wolves on Saturday and are now looking over their shoulders at Arsenal and Spurs when they should already have their Champions League spot secured.

LONDON, ENGLAND – MAY 07: Chelsea’s Christian Pulisic and Kai Havertz react after their side concedes their second goal during the Premier League match between Chelsea and Wolverhampton Wanderers at Stamford Bridge on May 7, 2022 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Stephanie Meek – CameraSport via Getty Images)

“That doesn’t really help Leeds much, to be honest, because instead of looking ahead to the FA Cup final this weekend, the Blues need to get something from this game.

“Chelsea are far from reliable at the moment but they have got some excellent players in their side.

“In among the hurly burly I am expecting from Leeds, enough of that Blues quality should shine through.”

Never a dull moment at Chelsea

There was certainly plenty of hurly burly when the two historic rivals met earlier in the campaign.

Chelsea and Leeds played out an entertaining and enthralling 3-2 at Stamford Bridge, eventually won by the hosts.

Three penalties were awarded in the game, with Jorginho sticking away the winning spot-kick in the 94th minute.

Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images

For the neutral, similar drama in the reverse fixture would be wonderful viewing.

For Chelsea fans, a quiet and routine evening will be the preferred outcome.

Keep up to date with all the latest Chelsea news and opinion by following The Chelsea Chronicle’s Facebook and Twitter accounts

Nathaniel is a football journalist who graduated from the University of Derby. He has worked at Burton Albion as part of their media team for two years. Nathaniel produces regular articles for the club’s official website and match-day programme. He covered the 2018 U20 Women’s World Cup in Brittany and has reported from grounds ranging from non-league up to the Premier League.