The year was a difficult one for most people around the world but Leeds United in 2020 was a different story. The club will look back at the year gone by with fond memories. They achieved what seemed impossible for many years. They got back to the Premier League and did so by being crowned as the winners of the Championship.
The journey of Leeds United in 2020 started on the top of the Championship table and it seemed certain that they would end up with an automatic promotion spot but then the unimaginable happened, the outbreak of the coronavirus. Football stopped for many months as people all around the globe started getting used to the new normal. Once it was announced that football in England will be back, no one in the country was more relieved than Leeds United fans. They went on to lift the Championship title and ended the 16 year hiatus from the Premier League. 2020 has been particularly good for Leeds United Football Club.
Let’s look at the main highlights from the year for the Whites.
16 YEAR LONG WAIT IS OVER
Marcelo Bielsa will go down in the history books of Leeds United as the man who made the city dream again and break the 16-year long wait of playing in the Premier League. For years, many Leeds fans thought that their days in the top-flight of English football were over but Bielsa made them dream again post his appointment in 2018. He did that in fashion as by getting crowned as the winners of the Championship. In doing so, Bielsa got his hands on his first club trophy. At last, he got what he deserved.
CHAMPIONSHIP PFA PLAYER OF THE YEAR – LUKE AYLING
There were many Leeds players who put some stellar performances in the Championship but there were none better than Luke Ayling. The brilliance of the English defender was his versatility. Along with that, his ability to score the odd goal when his team needed it the most made him the most valuable player in the Championship in the 2019-20 season and was rightly awarded as the PFA Player of the Year in August 2020.
PATRICK BAMFORD IS A REAL PREMIER LEAGUE STRIKER
After Leeds got promoted to the Premier League, many believed that they have to spend big in the transfer market and find a proper goalscorer. Patrick Bamford’s goalscoring record prior to this season was deemed not good enough and there were many doubters about his ability as a Premier League striker. Credit to Bamford, he didn’t take long to silence all of his critics as in their first match itself he found the back of the net against the Champions of England, Liverpool at their own patch. Since then Bamford has found the net nine times in the Premier League and is among the real contenders for the Golden Boot Award.
BIELSA BALL HAS TAKEN OVER THE PREMIER LEAGUE
It was always going to be intriguing to see how Marcelo Bielsa will adapt to life in the Premier League. Some believed that his all-out attacking style of play won’t work against the top sides in the league and that the Argentine will have to change his style. As you’d expect, Bielsa was having none of it and he continues to set his team up in high intensity football style and results so far depict that ‘Bielsa Ball’ is working in the Premier League.
Time and again his team has ruffled the feathers of the traditional top six in the Premier League and have decimated the likes of Newcastle United and West Bromwich Albion but netting five goals against each of them. His team almost always outruns the opposition and continues to play with flair till the last minute of the game irrespective of the result. Leeds United is everyone’s second favourite team currently precisely because of the style of football Bielsa’s team plays and they have been a joy to watch in 2020.
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